“The most important thing is to enjoy your life. To be happy. It’s all that matters.” – Audrey Hepburn
My definition of what happiness means has evolved over the years and now for me it means feeling healthy, feeling loved and feeling peace. Ten years ago, I would have read this quote and thought happiness meant grabbing my high heels and pulling an all-niter or seeking attention from unavailable men but all these activities just left me feeling empty and drained. A weekend of so called “happiness” would send me reeling into a week of sadness, loneliness, depression, guilt and unhappiness, of all things.
I would wonder, “Why do I feel so bad if I just did all the things that were supposed to make me feel good?” I slowly began to realize that the things I had chosen and the ideas that I had inherited about happiness did not work for me anymore. After finding myself in enough compromising situations, I began making small shifts.
The first and most important shift I made was to set the intention that I loved me more. I decided no matter what, that I loved me enough to put myself first from now on. Little by little I began choosing activities that filled me up and scenarios that I wanted rather than those that were expected of me or requested of me.
I began choosing me first and although it was difficult at first, the more I did it, the easier it got. Little by little, I began carving out a life for myself. A life that I was happy living, day in and day out, all the time. That’s the type of self-generated joy that created a deep well of security within me that keeps my soul nourished.
But it takes effort. It doesn’t just happen. I had to fight for what I wanted and put myself first even when I had to go against the grain. And it paid off. I wouldn’t trade what I feel inside today for a million dollars.
Nourish yourself and your desires. Find happiness within. Begin your journey.