How to Improve Your Life Right Now, Post 2
So many of the women I know seem to spend way too much time angry. They're angry at their husbands, their siblings, their children, their parents, their employers, the government, their school districts. In fact, it sometimes seems as if they are in a permanent crouch, just waiting for someone to give them a reason to be angry so they can spring.
I remember one time long, long ago, when Lance and I were dating, and things were moving into a serious place between us. There was a family function on his side, and I was waiting for him to ask me to attend with him. I was also certain he wasn't going to, and boy was I going to be pissed if he didn't. I mentioned this to my best friend, because this was back in the days when I still thought complaining was a synonym for conversation. (Tip: It's not.) And she called me on it. Totally called me on it, looked me in the eye and said, “So you're setting him up. You're not telling him what you want, you're just waiting for him to not do it so you can be mad.”
I was stunned. She was exactly right. And I think that was the first time I understood one simple, life altering practice that I adopted then and there. Tell your beloved exactly what you want. Do not expect him to figure it out on his own. And remember too, every time you decide to gripe about the man you love to your friends or relatives, you are undermining your relationship, and slowly killing the love between you.
We have this very strong tendency to make our moods entirely dependent upon the behaviors of other people and the conditions of our lives. If our husband brings us flowers, we're in a good mood. If he forgets, we're miserable. If the kids behave, we're happy. if they're acting out, we're frustrated. If money is good, we're thrilled. If money is tight, we're furious.
That's a backwards way to live our lives. We can only rise above it by coming to understand that we are the ones in charge of our mood. No one else. We can choose to be happy regardless of the circumstances. It is not our husband's job to be on his best behavior at all times so that we can be in a good mood. It is not our kids' job to toe the line in school so Mom doesn't get upset. And by the same token, it is not our job to jump through endless hoops to make other people happy. Happiness is an inside job.
Each person can be happy by choice, not by circumstance. When we choose to be happy regardless of what others are doing, we take our power into our own hands, rather than giving it away to others.
Each time we find ourselves getting angry at someone, what we are really saying is, “If only he/she/they would (fill in the blank) I would be happy!” What we're really saying is, “The key to my happiness lies in his/her/their behavior. They have to do X, Y, and Z so that I can be happy.” What we're really saying is, “My happiness is in their hands, not my own. I'm choosing to give them my power.” What we're really saying is, “I am making my happiness their responsibility. I am placing it squarely on their shoulders and it's their fault if I'm unhappy.” What we're really saying is, “I'm absolutely helpless to control my own mood. It's all in the hands of others.”
Instead of continuing to focus on the horrible, awful, very very bad thing someone we love did or failed to do, let's shift our focus to all the wonderful qualities that we love about them. Or if that person is being a pain, we can simply turn our attention to doing things we adore, spend some time noticing how full and how blessed our lives are. Notice the natural beauty around us. Remind ourselves that our purpose in coming to Planet Earth is to live and experience and enjoy and relish and bask in the myriad wonders of this physical world. Not to hold other humans to impossible standards and breathe fire upon them when they dare to disappoint us.
Another vital tip you need to know. When we stop focusing on the things they do that piss us off, and instead, focus on all the wonderful things they do that make us smile, they'll start giving us less of the former and more of the latter. And yes, that does mean that the bad behavior they've shown before, was drawn from them by us.
A habit of looking for things to get angry about creates more things to get angry about. But that means that developing a new habit of looking for things to love, will bring us more things to love.
The very day you begin putting this new way of thinking into practice, your life will improve drastically. When you master it, you'll be living a life of bliss.
But that's the point where you might want to go even deeper, and realize that even looking for things to be happy about instead of things to be angry about, is still conditional living. You're still looking for things to be happy about. The deeper goal here is to be happy regardless of things.
The spirit-being inside you, looking out through your eyes and hearing through your ears, is as delighted to be here in this physical body as a little child would be on his first trip to a toy store where everything is free. That part of you is happy all the time. Your goal is to be in complete harmony with that part of you, your soul, your higher self.
When you get that on a deep enough level, then everything you look at is beautiful, even the things you once found ugly. And on an even deeper level, everything you look at is God, even the things you once thought were evil. And on a still deeper level, everything you look at is a reflection of you, showing you another aspect of yourself.
That's a lot. That requires some mulling. But do the easy stuff.
Look for things to love instead of reasons to gripe.
Stop holding others responsible for your mood.
Never ever complain about the one you love. These things will change your world!