I have been the advocate that true happiness must come from the inside to be lasting. When we rely on ourselves as the source of our happiness we are empowered to not let negativity infest our thoughts. Yet, is it solely an internal process?
As I had mentioned in the previous weeks, happiness hasn’t been in abundance lately. Well, last Sunday we added a new addition to our family that brings us so much joy and love that now I am contemplating if happiness only comes from the inside. My spirits have felt so elevated these last few days watching our new dog play, give me hugs and kisses, and interact with my kids. I haven’t cried much at all this week. That’s huge!
I know that I cannot rely completely on Rocko to lift my spirits, but he is helping me through my grieving process. I truly feel that my Katrina and Speckles are blended together in Rocko and were a part in bringing him to me because they knew I needed the perfect dog to decrease my stress and lift my heart. I still miss them terribly, but Rocko is filling a hole that was left by their departure.
So is it ok to fill a void with something else or should we continue to struggle through our emotions and let time heal our wounds? This goes back to the question of traditional medicine versus a holistic approach. You do what you have to do so you don’t sink down so low that you can’t get back up. You find healthy vises to hold you up until you can stand on your own two feet again. If you broke your leg, you would use a wheelchair until your leg healed. You wouldn’t just keep walking around on a leg that didn’t support you. My depression was getting very challenging for me to independently try to lift myself up. I needed an outside source to be my wheelchair until my grief has lessened. So, Rocko got a really good home and my spirit is lifted. It meets both of our needs. It is mutually beneficial and that makes it ok.
When you are around things that make you happy, endorphins/hormones, are released in your body just like medicine would do if you took a pill. So, some of our happiness can come from the outside which boosts these natural happy chemicals on our insides like a runner’s high. I read a post by Gail Schuster, LSW called “Can we control our own happiness” that stated that we are 40-50% in control of our happiness and the environment and genetics gets the other 50-60%. That tells me that happiness is a combination of how you feel on the inside and what is going on outside of you. Alan Cohen says that what is happening outside of you is what is happening inside of you. They are mirrors of each other.
Keeping that in mind, can happiness come from the outside? Just as sadness can be derived from outside events, like losing my horse and dog, so can happiness, but only if the internal 50% allows it to. You still have a big role in your level of contentment. You are still the driving force. I could have gotten Rocko and not let him into my heart and resented that he was there or I could open my heart and allow him to lift me up. It’s the same way with letting God into your life. You have to make the decision to acknowledge his presence and guidance or not. My life is so much richer, more peaceful, and more complete with an open heart and knowing God’s presence in me. My 50% responsibility for my happiness stems from that presence of God inside of me. I knew love was the answer. That’s how God wants it to be.
Open your heart to the Lord and allow all things will be made possible. ~ Your Inner Guide
Voyage to HEAL Weekly Task
Stretch: Let’s open our hearts by placing our hands on our hearts and looking up. If you have neck pain, do not look up call the way to the ceiling. Respect pain. Focus on the gentle pull down of the weight of your hands against the skin on your chest. Feel free to tilt your head to the right or left. Move where it feels best and soften into the stretch as you hear the messages from your inner guide.
Exercise: Laying on your back or in standing, hold a can of beans or a 2lb weight. Slowly open and close your arms out to the side like you were a butterfly horizontally flapping your brings. Make sure you activate your core while doing this and breathe. Do this for 1-2 minutes a few times a day.
Habitual Change: Have you ever thought of your office chair or favorite chair like a pair of shoes? The more you sit on it, the flatter the cushioning will get. So, if you have an office chair or favorite chair that doesn’t seem to be supporting you as it did in the beginning, it may be time for a change. Add a cushion to it, such as the Everlasting Cushion. Make sure that it is firm enough to support your pelvis.
Perspective Enlightenment: I open my heart and allow all things to be made possible.
Godspeed on your Voyage to Heal Learning Healthy Everyday Activities for Life.