I have a confession. It wasn’t always my nature to be happy. Somewhere early in my childhood, I lost it.

It feels like a really odd thing to say for someone who coaches others and writes about mindset, happiness, and general life enrichment.

I wasn’t always happy. I didn’t even know how to be happy. But that’s changed.

I’m going out on a limb to open up and share a bit of my story with you, so you’ll know you’re not the only one.

I didn’t want to admit I wasn’t happy.

It’s possible I didn’t even recognize I wasn’t happy. When you’ve been in the same state for most your life, it just feels normal.

Grouchy, angry, bored, unsettled…those feelings were constant companions, so they felt normal.

One day, someone asked me if I was happy, and that time it really hit me. I didn’t think I could say “yes”.

At the same time, I didn’t want to admit I wasn’t happy. It’s like admitting you hate puppies. What sort of horrible person does that?

I’m half joking with that last thought, but to a degree, admitting I wasn’t happy made me feel like a failure. Life was pretty good, so there were no actual reasons for me to be unhappy, I just felt that way on the inside.

That left me feeling even worse. Generally unhappy, and on top of that, a failure for not being able to do something as easy as being happy.

I felt broken.

You’re not broken, screwed up, or lacking in anything.

You might not believe that right now, but please trust me.

I know when I wasn’t happy, I sure felt like tons of things were broken, screwed up, and lacking.

Sometimes I felt that way on the inside. What was wrong with me?

Other times I turned that broken feeling outward. Nothing was right. Everything needed to be fixed. Everyone else was a pain. That would leave me feeling angry and resentful.

In the end, neither scenario was right.

So, if you can, trust me when I say nothing is broken, screwed up, or lacking. That alone is a great step toward your own lasting happiness.

Now I choose Happiness.

Right now the idea of choosing happiness may seem absolutely ridiculous to you.

And I’m certainly not saying choosing happiness is like flipping a switch, and ta da, happiness abounds!

Happiness is a skill, a habit, a study, and a choice.

Happiness became a study for me, and over the years I exercised the muscles needed for strong and true happiness.

Like exercising any muscle, it’s not always easy. Sometimes it hurts. Sometimes I don’t want to do it. Sometimes I’m clumsy with it.

But in spite of those challenges, I exercise happiness anyway, because that’s who I want to be.

I love this quote by Eckhart Tolle:

“Discontent, blaming, complaining, self-pity cannot serve as a foundation for a good future, no matter how much effort you make.”

Discontent, blaming, complaining, self pity…they felt like unwelcome house guests.

As a result, I spent my whole adult life learning about the power of human thought and how it influences our experiences and our health.

I’ve had first hand experience with physical, emotional, relationship, and financial healing because of changes in mindset.

Now I help other people navigate that healing road to happiness.

I want to embark on this journey together. Keep reading and studying everything that comes your way.

You’ve found a great source right here, plus there are tons of other talented coaches and guides out there.

Practice what you learn, but be gentle. Like a baby learning how to walk, you’ll take a few steps and fall down. But then you’ll get up and do a bit better the next time.

That’s how I did it, and if I could cultivate lasting happiness in my life, I know you can too!

At my website, you can download my free PDF 5-day Happiness course. Visit me at www.christinebradstreet.com

You may also enjoy these other popular posts on happiness:

How do You Slash Stress and Disappointment from Your Life?

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Everything is Temporary – and it’s all going to be ok