As a Marriage and Family Therapist, I have encountered many people of various ages, different ethnicities, and all walks of life; and when asked what determines happiness, most people will respond by stating having money, a great job, a house, car, jewelry, the latest hand bags and shoes, or having a significant other. Things or people do not create happiness. Happiness comes from within. Happiness occurs when you are at peace with your circumstances. Happiness occurs when there is self love. People have the habit of consuming themselves in material things, work, other people, and substance in order to avoid addressing the underlying problems that are preventing true happiness.
Most people today have become so accustomed to wearing a mask; however, in order, to experience happiness, one must free his or herself. It’s time to become free of past mistakes, free from hurt, whether it was from family, friends or a partner, and free from guilt and shame due to bad choices. The media has played a major role in making people think if you don’t have the finer things in life, then you can’t be happy. Family and friends have also instilled in us that if you are not married with kids, with a great career by a certain age then you’re not doing well which results in feeling unaccomplished and unhappy with life. I’m here to tell you based on experience; the people who have the most money and who you think have it together DON’T. This also applies to family and friends. When your identity is based on deception, it creates destruction.
While it may not be showing externally, internally people are suffering inside. Eventually what is manifested on the inside will flourish externally. When it does, it can lead to physical, emotional, spiritual, and financial problems. There’s a quote I use with clients by John Webster and it states, “We think caged birds sing, when indeed they cry.” People have become so accustomed to living a lie when in reality they are crying out for help. Some people have self sabotage for so long that they have become numb to all emotions. Some people have been hurt so many times that they are afraid to be vulnerable again and experience the fullness of life. People are afraid to be happy because sometimes it requires us to leave people behind and walk alone.
Therefore, if I have described you in any way, it is time to take responsibility of your actions. It’s time to divorce yourself from the opinions of others. It’s time to stop living in fear. It’s time to rise up and address your problems, remove the mask, and free yourself. It’s time to Choose the art of L.O.V.E (Life, Opportunity, Vulnerability, and Empathy). It’s time to be HAPPY.