Think Yourself Happy Change #3: Meaning



If you were a 35-year-old executive and walked into the office holding on to the old, ratty teddy bear you used to take to bed every night as a child, people would think you were crazy, and they’d be right. Yet how many of us are still holding on to some really old, ratty stories from our past that continue to make us miserable?

As humans, we live out the stories that we make up for ourselves. And the meaning we assign to whatever happens in our lives affects everything that we do and don’t do. The problem is that most of us choose to tell ourselves some really lousy stories — again and again and again.

You know what I mean. The relationship that imploded. The business venture that failed. The class you flunked or the college you didn’t get into. The race or game that you blew. All too often we hang onto the pain of these pieces of our past and let them shape our lives for the worst.

Things that have happened in the past have hurt you enough. Don’t let them continue to do their damage by giving them energy in your thoughts.

Though these things happened, they only happened once — and you can choose not to keep living them. This is the story of you, who you are and why you are the way you are. What is the story and meaning that you have given to the events that have happened in your past? How does that story continue to affect you every day in every way?

Although you can’t change the events of your past, you can always choose to change what those events mean and how they affect you. Re-examine the beliefs you have that may be holding you back. If your story is that someone you loved left, and therefore everyone that you love in the future will leave too, how would that belief cause you to treat the people trying to get close to you? Change the meaning: someone you loved left, that means they had to go and that is all. This is where you can choose to believe that everything happens for a reason and it is for your benefit.

The Universe conspires for you, not against you.

The mind can only occupy one space in time, so choose to fill your mind with active thoughts that move you in the direction you want to go, not to the place you want to stay away from. If something is coming up and you can’t bear the thought of what might be, then don’t. The event hasn’t even happened yet; so don’t live the worst thoughts as though they are really happening now.

If we let it, our mind will take us through the worst possible scenarios, ones that couldn’t possibly happen, and emotionally we get to live through every one of those visions as though they actually happened. Chose to believe things will work out for the best every time, and whatever happens when it happens, will only happy once and you will deal with whatever that is then. But until then, chose a story that works for you, not against you. Choose a powerful meaning, and you will take back the power over your own life.

To develop a better meaning often requires us to look at the past, present or future from a different perspective. That’s the next step to thinking yourself happy.

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