I love watching the Olympics for what humans are capable of as well as for the stories behind becoming an Olympic althlete. Over and over I hear how the athlete has chosen to commit to what makes them happy, even when that happiness takes sacrifice, courage, and challenges them over and over. As Gabby Douglas said so beautifully “What makes my heart sing, what makes me happier than anything else in life, needs me to be it’s champion”.
Happiness is our birthright and as with any right, requires you to champion it through your actions. Even the US Constitution weighs in on happiness, stating how all citizens of the United States have the right to pursue happiness. And with the Webster dictionary defining the word “right” as “the moral entitlement to have or obtain something or to act in a certain way”, it is clear happiness takes action……action that is yours to take and action we often demand others take for us.
One of the first things I establish when working with a client is clarity on where lies their happiness, for happiness is personal. Often people are living scripts handed to them by those who love them, but whose scripts are not true for YOUR life, times, or happiness. Yes,it takes effort, courage, and investing your resources to discover and champion your happiness in life. And when you pursue your right to happiness and learn how to champion your happiness, you are choosing to empower your life abundant in joy, delight, and satisfaction.
Want to pursue your right to happiness? Check out my suggests below:
1. If you find yourself writing in your journal or diary about the same
“unhappies” as when younger, your right to happiness may need some
pursuing! No need to cast blame or shame, nor compensate when not
happy….reality TVanyone? ACTION- Find yourself a good coach, mentor,
or healer and begin to champion yourself and your happiness as your
right and your priority!
2. Listen to yourself during the day and notice where you blame others
for your feelings, your reactions, your burdens. (This one may take a
few passes as our cultural training supports blaming others for almost
everything!). ACTION-Choose something in your life to pivot from “not
happy” to happy and commit to it for a week and notice what changes.
(One of my faves is keeping my mouth shut when I want to react to those
who bug me with their driving!). When I pivot from reacting/judging,
not only do I take responsibility for my ignorant judgements, I find my
mood is much better at the end of a day of driving!)
3. Take inventory for where in your life you have resigned yourself to
“less than happy”, perhaps even chalked it up to life as an adult. This
is an example of living a script handed to you by those, who while they
loved you, their life is not yours to repeat. Don’t despair…simply
take action, for pursuing happiness needs your attention and your
care. ACTION-Make a list of what makes you happy-no matter how
“childish” it may be-and commit to action on one at least once a week.
It may be challenging to the adult you” but the “child you” knows how
important having fun is for being an adult.
4. Happiness means different things for different people, and even
different things at different times in your life. Make your right to
happiness a priority in your life, gather the support you need for
growing your happiness, and delight in sharing your happy with others.
Don’t despair if your happiness differs from those you love, nor insist
on common happiness. ACTION-Exchange happiness, delight in other’s
happiness, and don’t deny your happiness as deserving your attention,
your time, and your pursuit.
Truth is, it does take effort, can be uncomfortable or challenging to pursue your right to happiness. And, taking responsibility for your own happiness inspires others as well for taking up their right to happiness. And a world with more people championing their happiness is a world with less people choosing blame and unhappiness…..now that sounds like a right happy to me!