When we’re working to recover from addiction and mental illness, it can help to learn more about happiness and some of the myths surrounding it. When we believe these myths, it can actually work against our happiness and our pursuit of it. We can actually be stalling and postponing our ability to be happy and well. Let’s take a look at some common myths about happiness, so that we can think about things differently and find happiness more easily for ourselves.
Happiness is a Destination
We tend to think of happiness as a destination, a point in time, or a chapter in life we’ll get to eventually, and everything will magically work itself out. We focus on the happy ending, the happily ever after. For some of us, we associate happiness with getting married and having a family, a house with a white picket fence, finally finishing that degree, or achieving financial success. The truth is, happiness isn’t guaranteed with anything, no matter how much we might want it or think it will make us happy. Happiness is not a destination, it’s a journey. It’s finding ways to feel content, satisfied, excited and fulfilled in our daily lives. It’s finding those things that light us up from within, that make our hearts sing, that make us look forward to the next day. Happiness is exploring our interests, passions and talents. It’s is in the healthy coping skills we develop to help ourselves relieve stress, find inner peace, and tackle our problems head on rather than avoiding them with addictive substances and behaviors. Happiness is not a finite destination point we’re working towards, it’s the potential we have to find happiness along this journey we’re taking every day of our lives.
Happiness Should Come Easily
For many of us, happiness is something we have to work at. Struggling with addiction and mental health issues can rob us of our feelings of joy, gratitude, peace and fulfillment. We have to work to get those things back. We have to practice. Luckily there are some tangible things we can do on a regular basis to help build our feelings of happiness. A gratitude practice is one of the best things we can do for ourselves. When we focus on what we’re grateful for, in our lives, within ourselves, in the world, we train our minds to start looking for the good in everything around us. Focusing on the positive helps us start to see more things to be grateful for, every day. It’s a simple practice that yields tremendous results. We feel less depression, anxiety and worry. We become naturally more optimistic and hopeful. We develop our happiness naturally and holistically.
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