Thursday, 10 August 2017

You've got to do what makes you happy

I have always been a people pleaser and worried about what other people think about me. That has sometimes come in the way of my happiness, as in the past I have done things that I didn't necessarily want to do, just to make others happy. Even if that was just going out when I needed a night in, or bigger life-changing decisions that brought about a change that I wasn't happy with.

More recently I have started to realise that I need to do what makes me happy. Happiness gurus are constantly preaching about being more selfish and making more time for number one - and it's so true, as I don't think you will ever truly be happy unless your own wants and needs are satisfied. I've started to turn down more social invitations, as sometimes I just simply need a night in by myself. But I've also found myself feeling less awkward about asking people to spend time with me, as I am not so worried about them turning me down. I also think that I value myself more since I have started to put myself first in more situations, so I realise that people probably do actually want to spend time with me and be my friend (rather than me being insecure about friendships when I was going through depression).

I also feel like I have really got to know myself more since I have allowed myself to do things that truly make me happy. I know what I want and need from life, and the sort of people that I want to surround myself with. I have also been more adventurous as I have allowed myself to explore more things in life - such as skydiving, long travelling trips away from home, and even just simple things like trying new foods.

I've found that turning down social invitations hasn't affected my friendships - in fact I've realised that it's a totally normal and often necessary thing to do. Everyone gets unwell, everyone gets tired, everyone has problems, and everyone needs their own space from time to time. Life gets in the way sometimes, and most people are understanding of that - if they're not I guess are they really a great friend to have around? Surround yourself with those that are supportive of you and your choices, and who love you just the way you are. And if they cancel on you, remember that they most likely have a perfectly valid excuse and it doesn't mean that they don't care about you.

And I guess the most obvious effect of this new-found life motto is that I really do feel happier. I'm more comfortable in my own skin, able to say 'no' easier, and I have more to talk about. I like myself more and I like the person that I am becoming each time I make a decision, whether it's about what to eat tonight or where in the world to visit next.

Take time to get to know what you want from life and what makes you happy - and respect yourself enough to be able to go after that. I promise you that you'll be so much more content for it.
What if I told you that everything is meant to shatter first -
And that your best life begins when you stop worrying about picking up the pieces,
And start building something new instead.
Would you continue staring at broken glass?
Learn to recycle.
                                 - Wine and Words

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