Is it that simple?…
Certainly, there are exceptions and levels to almost every experience, but the good news is that science tips wildly in favor of happiness being an “inside job”! So then, regardless of whether you feel you may fall a bit short on the naturally optimistic and happiness scale as a matter of course, the empowering fact is that you can indeed think and shift your way to a happiness mindset regardless of your natural bend!
Perspective and your mind’s eye can even trump the reality of your circumstances with the right thought habits as your secret sauce. In fact, I still enjoy rehearsing some of the funny stories my mother has shared over the years about her childhood and her revelations as an adult about the truth of her experience. Her story was rich in simplicity and deeply abundant in joy. But unbeknownst to her, it was a life quite poor in the way of means. This happiness paradox can exist because happiness is significantly connected to our thoughts and perspective. The tales you tell yourself in your mind are vital when it comes to creating a sense of happiness.
So, what are you thinking?
The thoughts you produce the most about people, your work, your relationships, and experiences have the greatest impact on your emotions. Interestingly, when it comes to thinking our way to happy, it’s important to understand that science suggest that it is much easier for our minds to retain a negative thought or experience than a positive one. So then, we think our way to happy through an intentional commitment to re-frame our experiences and thoughts to honor what positively can be gained. The idea and an empowering habit is to set the intention to 1.) identify the negative mindset that is looping in our mind and causing the unhappy emotion 2.) arrest it by committing our thoughts and perspectives toward a determined and alternative positive thought or statement. For instance, that boss may truly work the very last nerve that you have (ha!), but you win by intentionally and consistently replacing that thought and conversation with a more positive (but true and believable) one. One like, you are on a journey not at your destination and that you are just gathering experiences daily for your next level. Ahhh, that already feels a ton lighter, doesn’t it?
As you consistently take active happiness steps whether implemented through a practice of journaling, meditation, or simple gratitude prayers, new neural connections begin to form, and novel thought patterns will similarly evolve.
The bottom line is that negative thoughts have an upper hand in the archives of our thought-life, but you can indeed think your way to a more liberating mindset of happiness by empowering the positive ones.
The thinking to being connection…
Thinking over potential problems in our minds can make them real for us, so much so that we can experience the unhappiness that comes from them being realized in our minds and not actually. Your body doesn’t know the difference between what you have imagined and what is real. That’s a pretty powerful connection. In fact, although you may understand the negative possibilities you have rehearsed are imagined, your body can still produce stress chemicals that can affect you negatively as if these were real events. In the same way, we can be empowered to think our way happy by generating positively inspired thoughts that will aid in the production of feel-good chemicals and neurological responses.
Finally, simply expect great! What you seek, or expect to see, is what will show up along the way. As the book of Proverbs (verse 23:7) so aptly encourages us: “As a man thinks within, so he is.” Your journey is enriched by each choice you make towards the destiny you want to see. Choose your thoughts wisely because every thought counts!
Greatness is your destiny, Kingdom is your calling, Victory is your choice.
Choose powerfully! You’ve got this!
How might you implement a new happiness intention in your life this week?