Surviving Your Split

Is this the secret to happiness after divorce?

Is this the secret to happiness after divorce?

As we continue our journey of learning how to take our lives back and reclaim it as our own, I often hear a common question.

“How can I be happy?”

This million-dollar question seems to be on everybody’s minds. We often wonder if there’s some magic potion we can drink to be there. Or some secret code we can crack that will then enlighten us on how to attain happiness.

But I think it’s a lot easier than taking some round-the-world journey. Or selling all your worldly goods and living the rest of your life as a guru in the mountains.

Mountain Meditating

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

No drastic measures or hiking required. Image via Sundance Studio. 

 

The secret to happiness lies in living and loving the present.

It’s really that easy.

You may be doubtful, or think I’m full of shit.

 “But Martha! What if I’m currently at a stage in my life where nothing is going my way? I still feel hurt and betrayed over the divorce! I’m stressed out about not finding a job or never being able to retire!”

I get it. Because I’ve been there, too. But remember what we talked about two weeks ago? Happiness can only come from internal factors…not external ones.

And being happy comes from loving where you are…now.

It doesn’t matter if you feel like your life is a mess.

It doesn’t matter if currently, your life is a lot different than what you thought it would be ten years ago, five years ago, even a year ago.

What matters is your ability to see the good in whatever your current circumstances are, and to be grateful for what you have in this life, versus what you do not.

And it’s not just me who thinks this. A recent TED talk goes in-depth to find the traits of the happiest people around the world. And the common thread between all of them wasn’t their income, or their material possessions, or their relationship status.

What linked them together was the fact that they could enjoy and thrive in the present moment, regardless of what circumstances surround them.  

They were happy because they were grateful. Not grateful because they were happy.

If you want to know learn more, check it out here!

Road to Happiness

 

 

 

 

 

The only fantastic voyage you need for your happiness is the one within. Image via GetMotivated.

 

Exercise: How to love the present, whatever it looks like.

Learning how to be happy with wherever you are right now can feel foreign, mainly because most of us live in a culture or were raised to not think in this manner. But I promise it’ s a lot easier than you may think!

Let’s start with this simple exercise. In the next few weeks, we will dig deeper on how we can get rid our own self-doubt and really become empowered. But for now, let’s build an awesome foundation.

1. List obstacles you think are keeping you from being happy. Need some help? Take a look at the examples below.

My retirement took a hit from the divorce and now I’ll never retire.

How can I be happy when I am in a job that I absolutely hate?

My ex left me heartbroken and angry. It’s hard to be happy with these feelings.

 

2. For each of those obstacles, flip the script! List 3 GOOD THINGS about them.

Retirement

  • At least I am no longer in an unhealthy and unhappy marriage

  • Although I have to continue to work, I now have an opportunity to focus on doing something that I love, or can now explore something new

  • If I want to retire, maybe this gives me the opportunity to think about nontraditional retirement and relocating to someplace with lower costs of living and good weather, like Costa Rica or Thailand!

Awful Job

  • This job is giving me an income so that I can have a bed to sleep in, food to eat, and opportunities to do things outside of work that I love

  • If the work is really bad, it now serves as motivation to find something better and inspires me to find another line of work that I am more compatible with

  • I am now learning more about myself with this job—the things I can tolerate, the things I won’t stand for…things I previously did not notice

Do you see the pattern here? Now, you try it! 🙂

 

3. Repeat when you feel stressed, overwhelmed, resentful, sad, etc.

 

4. Do this exercise every day. The smallest habit can change how you view the world.

I love doing both this exercise and the exercise to find your own joy together. What you find is some calming internal switch that turns out when you list what you’re grateful for. And after you list those things, it makes listing the good things about our perceived obstacles so much easier. And when we begin to have the mindframe of finding the good, being grateful for what we have, and seeing each day not as another crazy roller-coaster of divorce that we once did, then little by little we understand the beauty and promise we all have…right here, right now.

And what can be happier than that?

So, let me know how this exercise goes! Are there any obstacles that you still struggle with seeing the good in that you would like to discuss? I love hearing from you so drop me a line!

Next time as we continue to learn how to take our lives back, we will discover how to love ourselves better. It’s going to be a lot of fun, empowering, and I promise you won’t want to miss it.

Until next time, remember to take care of yourselves. You deserve it.

Warmly,

Martha

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