News Flash, you’re not! I think I spent most of my life trying to keep or make people happy. It wasn’t until I started this journey that someone told me that it wasn’t my responsibility, my responsibility was to make sure I was happy. That seemed selfish to me. It was pointed out that a lot of the times I was trying to make someone else happy was selfish because I wanted something in return, even if it was just the acknowledgement, to myself or others, that I had done it, I wasn’t doing it out of the goodness of my heart, it didn’t mean anything to me unless someone had taken notice, and, in a sense, I was using them to try to fill a void in my own life or to prove I was a good person.
As a kid I had always tried to make my parents happy, they were the first, I think we all did that, it was something I wore like a badge of honor, until my teens when what seemed to make each other happy was no longer the same, but there was still something in me, even into adulthood, that wanted to please them and make them smile, or proud, even with my rebellious streak. If I wasn’t making them happy I would go out of my way to try to manipulate or craft that outcome, and when that didn’t work, I then wore that like a badge of failure, and transferred that need to other people to make happy, but in truth I was really not happy myself and put all of my worth on my ability to do something for someone else’s happiness, which is a dangerous place to be since we only have control of your own happiness.
I really believed that if I could make someone happy that meant I had won, that meant I had worth, and maybe, just maybe, I was a “good” person. What it meant is that I put other people’s feelings and wants ahead of mine and then went on to not have my needs met, my voice heard, or me finding, well happiness. I then would become the martyr when all of my good deeds were not noticed or appreciated and I would lash out or resent the other person for not seeing all the good I was doing for them, or for not appreciating it, but what I was trying to do was someone else’s job for them, and not doing the work for myself.
We are all responsible for our own happiness, it’s not anyone else’s job but our own. Sure it’s nice when someone thinks of us and does something they know will make our day better or easier, but relying on someone else to provide us with happiness is like expecting someone to go to work for you but you still want the paycheck. Happiness is our job, and our job alone, if we can’t find happiness in ourselves nothing anyone else can provide will ever be enough.
It also goes back to what I’ve talked about previously, about trying to find outside fixes to an inside problem, we need to truly find happiness within ourselves, not look to outside people to provide it, or feel we’re responsible to provide it for someone else. It’s about living our authentic selves, yes, that again, and living in our truth, being honest about what we want and what we’re looking for, and not being afraid to ask for it and tell people about it. Now, I’m not saying we should just blurt stuff out and not care who we say it to or how it’s received, I think as loving and caring individuals we should be compassionate towards others, but we shouldn’t skirt around our own happiness for the sake of others. We need to live our lives, not live a life for someone else. When we’re living life and finding happiness on our own we are better able to share that with others, authentically, we can share our light and love with those around us without expecting anything back, just because we want to and know it might make someone else’s day brighter, and the love we have for ourselves naturally spills over into the people’s lives we care about.
Now, I totally understand that doing nice things for others is also a way to make ourselves happy and feel like we’re spreading love, and it is, as long as it’s not at the expense of our own happiness or replacing it, sometimes it is easier to see what will make other people happy before we can see it in ourselves, and seeing that just might open the door to help us see what our own happiness looks like, doing something for someone else might help us understand or see how we can find our own happiness, just make sure you are finding your own. One should never replace the other, it should nourish the other, the other being you.
As we continue down this path we should start to find those things that make us happy, US, what truly makes OUR hearts shine, that should always be our base, now that’s not to say we’re not going to have to sometimes do things we don’t want to do, but we should never be doing something because we’re afraid of not making someone else happy, we’re cheating ourselves, and we’re cheating them of finding their own happiness. Feed your life with what makes you happy and see how that spills over to the people in your life, by making your own happiness a priority you might even inspire someone else to find theirs. See how that works? Find your true happiness, and if you don’t know, try new things, SAY YES, explore, investigate, listen to your heart, happiness is out there, we just have to find it for our self and choose to live in it.
SLAY OF THE DAY: Do you think you put other people’s happiness before yours? Why do you think you do that? Do you believe you deserve to be happy? If not, why not? YOU DO! Ask yourself, what makes you happy, and challenge yourself to find your happiness and do those things. Happiness is your job, make it a priority. SLAY on.
S – self L – love A – appreciate Y – you