Archives for category: Happiness

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Hi my name is Kit (putting my left hand up), I think I am obsessed with happiness? Why? I have been through my fair share of aches, pains, challenges and struggles since I could remember my earliest memory. I have enough psychological scars from these life experiences which has drowned me most of my life. Therefore, I decided over seven years ago that I would be a happiness millionaire. Being wealthy to me doesn’t mean I need to be stinking filthy rich. Being wealthy to me means that I am happy. Being wealthy to me means that I am happy with whatever I have at the present moment. Being wealthy to me means I am happy because it is good for my health.

Happiness is subjective. Happiness is fleeting. Happiness comes and then it goes just as quick as lightening. Happiness to me is like a muscle that needs to be worked on each day, each week and each month. Happiness needs constant fuel. Happiness is something that requires your time, energy and attention.

On Thursday this week, I asked my fellow Toastmasters at our regular Table Topic session how they define happiness. The member who got the question answered it with a wide variety of valuable insights. She said at the beginning of her impromptu speech “Someone who is smiling doesn’t mean that they are happy. Someone who is not smile, doesn’t mean that they are not happy!”  I thought her answer was thought provoking and I learned from her intriguing answer.

From my personal experience with surrounding myself from people in different ages, backgrounds, cultures, different social status, different races, different religions, different gender orientation, different believes, etc etc you get what I mean by now……I have noticed that there are some people who do not experience happiness quite like the others. There seems to be a certain group of people, now I am not putting labels on these people here. I am sharing with you my observations about how different people handle their happiness.  What I want to share with you is this, some people are so damn focused on the tiny and minute details of their problems and they shall share these tiny and minute details with you that lasts en eternity and you fall asleep whilst they are still talking, yes believe me I have known such people and were friends with them, they just don’t seem to be able to handle happiness as well as the others. This particular group of people are what I call the “drama queens or drama addicts”. It is not their fault that these people behave in this way. It is how they were set up. It is how they were taught. It is how they were conditioned to behave. Sadly, these people do not have a place in my life any longer. Why?  I have no time, energy or attention to give to these people because they suck the happiness out of me. I become sick when I am surrounded by these people. Let’s just say that I am allergic to the “drama queens and drama addicts”. Therefore I keep them out of my life for good.

Since happiness is one of my priorities, I am mindful and aware of who I am friends with. After all, we do become a product of the first five people we spend the most time with. Therefore our friends do influence us in a way that can have a huge impact on our habits, our behaviours, our health and well being, our success, our happiness……need I go on?  I think not.

I know that having friends is vital to our overall health and well being. Yet I would rather have a handful of friends than friends that I cannot keep up with like the number of friends you have on your Facebook. I would rather spend time alone than spend it with a “drama queen or drama addict” because I want to keep my happiness intact. There are people whom I can only spend three minutes with. There are those whom I can only spend three hours with. If you are the lucky few whom I can spend three days with, you must be above average!  You must be able to laugh at yourself. You must be able to fool around with me, be childlike and crack a few jokes here and there. Otherwise I have no intentions whatsoever of being friends with you. Now there is no need to take this personally because you cannot possibly be every one’s friend.

How do you choose your friends? How happy are you with your current friends? When was the last time you checked in on your current friends as to:

  1. Where do they have you heading?
  2. What do they have you focusing on?
  3.  What do they have you reading?
  4. What do they have you listening to?
  5. How do they support you to move forward and grow?

These are vital questions you must ask yourself regularly with your current friends in order to check in how you are doing with your friends.

The quality of our life is determined by the quality of the relationships we keep. Being an adult, we are fully responsible for choosing who we keep in our lives and who we limit our association with. Our happiness then is determined by the relationships we choose to keep. Imagine you are keeping a relationship that is dysfunctional and unhealthy for you. How do you expect your life to be functional and healthy when you are keeping such a dysfunctional and unhealthy relationship in your life?  How do you expect to attract happy relationships to you when you are not happy with this particular relationship that you keep around you?

All it takes to destroy your happiness is for one poor choice of keeping a dysfunctional and unhealthy relationship around you. You may not be aware of what a dysfunctional and unhealthy relationship is. I didn’t until I read a few self help books on the subject. I suggest that you do your own research and read up on dysfunctional and unhealthy relationships.

I made an exceptionally tough choice a few years ago to let go of a number of friendships that were no longer serving me well. After I let go of these friends, I have a more peaceful and happier life, without the drama, without the boring details and I was ever so proud of myself for taking care of me. My happiness soared each day. I could finally focus on my happiness and keeping the level of happiness steady.

Life has a habit of throwing struggles and challenges your way now and again just to test you. I had an extremely unpleasant day on Tuesday. My happiness was nowhere to be seen. I felt anxious. I felt a deep sense of sadness and intense pain surging through my body. I felt overwhelmed by all of this that came out of the blue without warning. It almost took my life. At that particular moment I had an inner voice that was ever so dark I was petrified of it. I had no idea where it came from, why it was there and what triggered it. I  just knew that the inner voice was not me. I did everything I possibly could to kick that dark and evil thought out of me. Thank goodness I was mentally and emotionally strong other wise I may not be here today to write this.

Today was a much happier day for me. I went to our local park for a short walk. I took my time, soaking up everything there. I was mindful and aware of the sounds and smells, the flowers and trees, the falling leaves of different colours, the people and dogs, the breeze of wind swishing to and fro, I looked up at the sky, I look at the leaves on branches blowing in the lively wind, I saw mushrooms around an old tree. Some of those mushrooms had turned so black they looked like coal. I took some photos of these mushrooms because I was intrigued and fascinated by them.

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I had thoroughly enjoyed this short fifteen minute walk. It was leisurely without me rushing to go anywhere, to do anything in particular and it was most enjoyable for me. I think I neglect to “smell the roses” when I am ever so rushed to complete my tasks and work obsessively on reaching for my goals.

I sat down to have steak pie with Cory and Calvin, my sons. I had a chat with them and that brought more happiness to me.

Next, I went to a large stationery store called Paperchase to indulge in my inner child’s stationery obsession. I browsed their latest collection and thoroughly enjoyed the customer service I received from a young girl who rescued me from not finding the large hardback journal I wanted for my daily journal-ing habit. She was eager to help me and offered me her full attention. I felt important and valued. To me, that’s how you keep your customers happy. When your customers feel important and valued, they shall keep shopping with you. That’s a win win and spreads joy to their customers.

Next on my agenda was to attend a Toastmasters meeting in the south side of my city. I was running late and was in a pickle. Hehe

The meeting was lacking some energy this evening. Nonetheless, I was enjoying it and laughed at some of the speeches. James was the funniest of them all. He can make his audience laugh at anything he says. He is comfortable with making a fool of himself. He is after all a champion who has won a number of speech contests. I could certainly learn some winning tips from just watching him. Hehe

The meeting ended more or less on time and I got to chat with some fellow members. The bonus of the evening was when I was offered a lift home by the president Will. Apparently, he lives close by where I live. That was excellent. In future, I could ask Will to drive me home after a meeting at his club to save me on travelling on two buses to get home.

I am feeling ever so happy I am grinning from ear to ear. Hehe

I know this happiness thing is fleeting and shall come and go as quick as a flash. Yet I define happiness as feeling comfortable with feeling the negative emotions and still be able to smile and spread the joy, happiness and love. I certainly managed to spread some joy, happiness and love today all because I chose to.

Thank you for my happy day full of joy, gratitude and love!

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When was the last time you felt alive, physically?

feeling alive

I feel most alive when I feel free from the aches and pains from life’s daily struggles and challenges. I am feeling my body ageing daily as I drag myself out of bed to start my day. I miss the mornings when I was a tender teenager, waking up to start my day with boundless energy and enthusiasm. I miss the feeling of a pain free body to move freely and vivaciously. I miss the endless supply of energy I had in my tender teens to see me through each day’s struggles and hardships. I miss feeling the care free thought of no responsibilities like I have now, as a mother to three sons and a wife, a daughter-in-law, a sister-in-law, an employee, a mentor and a role model to so many people. I miss having the fun that I had back then, in my tender teens, with the endless laughter and care free being that I was.

I thought it was the gargantuan amount of responsibilities that weighed me down many years ago, until I learned that it was the aches and pains from going through the hardships, the struggles, the challenges, the setbacks and the daily tasks that needed my full attention. The aches and pains from all the emotions that I had learned to stuff down my body, ignoring them, suppressing them, dismissing them and brushing them under the carpet. This only created something uglier that came back up some years ago when I was diagnosed with mild depression, signed off work for two weeks and I was beginning a journey with life in total darkness.

There was light at the end of the dark, dull and scary tunnel for me when I was fortunately introduced to personal development back in 2011. I learned that my depression was caused and created from my set up……… my dysfunctional family set up, my childhood of not knowing who and what I was and this created so much chaos in my early life. I remember my childhood was full of drama, chaos, shouting and screaming after I began living in Glasgow, Scotland after I moved from Hong Kong. I remember mum was a very different person prior to our move to Scotland. She was always cheery, bubbly, happy and fun to be with. This all changed when we started living with dad. He was far too serious and grumpy for mum to have fun with us. Mum was being influenced by dad’s sour faced grumpiness! Dad never ever smiled or laughed the way mum did. Dad never ever had so much fun with us like mum did. Dad was just an old grumpy sour faced Scrooge.

I slowly learned to be authentic, to be open and honest and most importantly to be myself. The journey in finding myself, finding out who and what I am was ever so painful. I experienced so much pain from learning that I was denied so many of my basic needs as a child growing up. I felt rage in full throttle coming through my body. I wanted to punch someone. Anyone and in particular, my dad and mum. I wanted to cause them as much pain as they had caused me to live with. I want them to feel all the aches and pains that I was carrying around, all day, everyday. I wanted them to suffer twice as much as they caused me to suffer.

There was one particular book I remember reading, at the end of 2012, which helped me to let go of this full throttle rage I was carrying around. I felt so much lighter after I had completed it’s final chapter. I even remember calling my ex husband asking him to talk to Cory, our eldest son because he needed us to be there for him during a tough time he was having. There on my bed, I was as cool as a cucumber, talking slowly and calmly. This was all new to me as I rarely felt this relaxed and calm with such a loser of an ex husband.

As I continued with my delightful journey into developing a better self, with my new attitude to life, I started to feel less aches and pains. Then the aches and pains would come crashing into my body, like I was hit by a double decker bus, as new struggles and challenges came my way. Oh my goodness! Why me?  Just leave me alone!  I have had more than enough shit to deal with in my life.

Life gives us lessons to learn, disguised as struggles, challenges and setbacks. They are there to help us grow, develop, expand and move out of our comfort zone.

When I lost my dearest big brother to a very sudden death in November 2013, I was thrown into the darkest rut I had ever experienced. His death came at a time when I was growing and expanding. I had learned a few things about this and that, which all came to me at the appropriate time to help me through this latest life experience. I lost the most vivacious part of me when big brother died. I was dead inside. Something inside of me died the morning we received news of big brother’s sudden passing. It took me over eighteen months of painful therapy, grieving and crying to get through losing my big brother, my twin, my one and only lifetime companion. I eventually found myself again. I was slowly thawing and becoming alive once again. Alive enough to enjoy the good, the happiness, the love, the health and wealth that life has to offer each one of us.

It is said that when something or someone is taken away from us, something or someone takes their place. That was to become true for me. I met my Aussie hubby just three months after losing my dearest big brother. My Aussie hubby has helped me, educated me and brought out the best in me when I had lost myself to the most heartbreaking life experience I had endured. We have thoroughly enjoyed everyday of our long distance relationship since our paths crossed in unexpected circumstances.

Life is brighter than it ever has been for me. Yes, there are days when I still feel the aches and pains from life. Yes, there are days when my body says “No you are not dragging me out of bed” just like today.  I say to my body “Just do it and you shall feel happier!”  I talk to myself in a much more positive and constructive manner. Unlike what I did prior to my journey with working hard on myself. At the end of a tough day, I say to myself “Well done for getting through another challenging day”.  I sleep a deeper sleep which helps me to feel revitalised and rejuvenated in the mornings.

life adventure

Life is so much more enjoyable nowadays as I smile more each day. The only make up that I ever need and it costs absolutely nothing in terms of money. I laugh at the silliest things and I am finally living for myself and that is success. Life is a fun adventure with my craziness and that is all that I need to inspire others to live for themselves. Happy living!