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  • Written by Eric North aka “The Happiness Warrior”



"If someone can prove me wrong and show me my mistake in any thought or action, I shall gladly change. I seek the truth, which never harmed anyone: the harm is to persist in one's own self-deception and ignorance." Marcus Aurelius

I believe that there are only two ways to look at life. Option one is to think of our existence as a great and challenging game. One that we can all play to win using our unique skills and powers. Option two is to view our lives as a never-ending wheel that’s constantly spinning and repeating the same things over and over again. We have choices to make throughout our lives but how we view ourselves and our ability to change and adapt with ease is how we learn to play the game of life and change the world.

As The Happiness Warrior, I want to help you take the first option and choose to view your life as something that if we’re lucky, we get to play every day. The truth is that every problem has a solution and often it’s only an adjustment to our attitude that’s needed to create a happy result.

Changing ourselves can sound hard and impossible but it starts when we know deep down that we deserve to live in our truth and create peace and fulfillment in our lives. Intuition is the inner voice that helps us align with our authenticity. Listen to your heart and remember that life is too short for settling for less than we deserve.

Fully understand and know that challenges are what makes life richer. We can all experience the clarity that comes with understanding that reinventing ourselves is a gift that we can all experience. Each new beginning starts with each new breath and every morning when we open our eyes. Our lives look brighter when we tell ourselves that we deserve the best and move forward in creating our own experience. Opportunities are more abundant, and choices are clearer when we believe in ourselves and know that we are capable of change.

Only when we are unashamed to be our authentic selves and show our vulnerability can we change and create the lives we’ve dreamed about. Personal change and renewal are the catalyst to growth and happiness. Changing ourselves is how we change our perception of ourselves and others and how we change the landscape of our lives.

In my younger years I lived with a lot of hurt that accumulated from my conservative upbringing and well into my early adulthood. I didn’t fit in, was lonely at times, and persevered through abusive relationships. I had a hard time being authentic and revealing my true self. I feared my vulnerability more than anything and went to great lengths to change who I was to conform to societal expectations. As a natural high achiever, I lived for others’ expectations and feared their scorn and shame.

Rejection stemmed from my fear of the unknown, and I felt uneasy and unable to change my outlook. I became adept at hiding who I was and lived in constant fear of rejection and humiliation.

This type of behavior that I exhibited usually has an unhappy outcome and I spent many years in abusive relationships feeling trapped and unhappy. My spirit had never truly been free in my younger years, and I knew that I deserved and needed a change of heart and attitude. I began to focus on gratitude, forgiveness, and belief in myself. I felt myself naturally attracted to other happy people and I became happier than I’d ever known I could be.

When I broke free and literally escaped with my life, I felt grateful, and my spirit rose. I knew that my defensive and insecure behavior in the past was not who I was and set out to discover myself for the first time. I learned that I wanted to be happy and could use my pain to help others navigate their lives. My life started to change, and I began to look at the journey ahead as a magical adventure of my own creation. I realized that only I was responsible for my happiness and that my choices and self-belief were embedded in my attitude and intention. My pain and the miserable memories from my past were also my wisdom that I could use to help others find their own greater purpose, forgiveness, and understanding.

TAKE RESPONSIBILITY

Don’t let your negative experiences define who you are. Take responsibility for your actions. We are not the summation of our tragedies but rather the survivors of our past. Victimhood is a trap that never ends that stuns our progress and development. Realize that growth comes when we are at peace with our past and able to forgive ourselves.

So many suffer so needlessly with a mindset for self-inflicted pain and martyrdom. These are choices that we never need to make and are only there to control us and make us easier to control and manipulate. Be your own best advocate and rise and show them how capable and relatable you are. We can’t change the world unless we are sure of ourselves first!

BE THE EXAMPLE AND ACCEPT OTHERS FOR WHO THEY ARE

Now more than ever in our society we’re seeing examples of people who want to control others by altering the attitude, behavior, preferences, and mental processes of others in the belief that they will live happier lives with their rules. They firmly believe that only their way of life is good and that everything others do or how they act is inappropriate or sinful. They yearn to feel better about themselves by proving others incorrect and assisting them in changing. They want to take your spirit and make it theirs.

The truth has a way of righting these wrongs, but nothing has more impact than the example we set ourselves. We all have the power to be our own warriors and stand up for the truth and good for all!

Authenticity and empathy are the antidote, and we have the means within each of us to stand up and use our voices for compassion. Remember that people who judge and shame others are often mirroring themselves. Why listen to the words of someone that you wouldn’t trust and find offensive?

 Be proud of your empathetic and authentic nature and use these to guide you:

--Changing others doesn’t work and is not your business.

--Respecting another’s identity is everything you need to know.

--Happiness comes from within and not from external forces.

--Don’t forget who you are and live in your truth.

--Drop the ego and love your authenticity.

OWN IT AND WIN—NOTHING IS FAIR UNLESS WE MAKE IT FAIR         
                                              
When times are tough, how we respond and the attitude we take is all we need to win. We have power over our actions and every detail matters. It’s a great responsibility but one that we all have within ourselves when we learn to take accountability and tell our stories without apology or shame.

Know that someone who seeks to alter others is insecure, dissatisfied, and not mature enough to accept others’ differences. They are unaware that in their efforts to transform others, they are insulting the essential personality of that individual and harming their own spirit. It’s our connection with ourselves and the all-knowing power of the universe that shows the way. When we listen to our inner voice, we know who we are with clarity and conviction.

THINK CREATIVELY

As humans we never stop searching for new sources of inspiration. Our creativity is the life force that moves us forward, helps us make decisions, and sets our path.

Creativity takes work and self-discipline and helps give us fresh ideas, renews our motivation, and helps us to readily adapt to change.

Creativity:

--makes us present. We are taking action and doing something!

--helps build our passion and solidify our relationships. The more we’re connected with ourselves the better our connection with others.

--is playtime. The act of engaging in playfulness helps lower our defenses and opens new sources of original thought.

--leads to new opportunities and choices.

--helps lift out of depressed times in our lives.

--makes us happier and more fulfilled.

--takes us into unknown territory and always teaches us something new.

--builds intuition and intention. Both are essential factors for growth.

--builds character and helps us to become the best authentic versions of ourselves.

--helps us to love what we’re doing and create more purpose and happiness.

Happy people like to share their creativity and knowledge with others to help make their lives better!

LIVE ADVENTUROUSLY

Attitude is everything and how we look at life is a choice we make. When we create a sense of adventure for our lives even ordinary things can take on more shine. We can live each day in the simple joy of knowing that we have chosen a path to get more out of life.  Adventure changes us and makes our lives richer and more fulfilling.

When we live with a sense of adventure an ordinary day can become an amazing event. Live without fear and understand the feelings of peace and contentment that comes when we live in the present. Life can be magical when we picture ourselves moving through the obstacles and lessons in life in a place of personal happiness.

CHALLENGE YOURSELF TO CHANGE AND BE HAPPY!!!

As The Happiness Warrior, I believe that the only thing holding us back from happiness is ourselves. Listen to your inner voice. Give yourself permission to be happy and watch your life change. When we are happy, we want others to share in our happiness and our world grows brighter. Why fear change when the most important lessons of life come when we learn to change ourselves and see the world in a new light?



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