Okay everyone, listen up. We’ve been through some very trying times and they’re not over yet. A crisis makes you rethink your life and make some changes. If you’re like me, the desire to make some positive changes in your life are floating around in your mind in an endless swirl. Being in the midst of a crisis makes us long for major changes and believe it or not, this is a great time to begin to make plans. New doors need to be unlocked and pathways forged where you begin to challenge the status quo of your life. Your life should be a happy adventure—make it a good one.

We need to get rid of repetitive and negative mind-sets and relationships that are keeping us in a rut. Now is the time to stop, take a breath, and to be honest with yourself. Forget age—healthy, positive changes can be made no matter the ‘number’ you see. It is only a number after all. Don’t let stereotypes of that number influence you in your decisions. You need to begin to prepare for a new chapter, one that you alone can write.

Ask yourself this question and be honest in your answer. Am I really on the correct pathways to what I, only I, need and want? Do I really want life as I knew it before the pandemic to return or do I see this time as the time to prepare for a new and happier future? If the answer is YES, here are a few tips to help you make some needed decisions.

Seek and make your own happiness

I love my family and friends but if I depended on any one of them to provide me with happiness on a daily basis I would be disappointed. The reverse would be true if they expected me to do the same. Your happiness is your own responsibility. What makes you happy? Discover your own unique talents and skills and work towards opening a door in your future that lets you use them.

Get off the guilt-trip.

Guilt is the most useless emotion we have. We are amazing creatures, we humans. We hold onto guilt and wear it like Hester Prynne wore the scarlet letter in Hawthorne’s famous book. We wallow in it, we develop a relationship with it, keeping it with us night and day. Guilt becomes our constant companion stopping us from living. Never think that by feeling guilty you are showing an acceptance of responsibility and never allow others to impose ‘guilt-tripping’ on you.

Be a life architect and design a blueprint for yourself.

Create a master plan for this new part of your life. Throw away what isn’t working, including family and friend relationships, and begin designing a life that you want, a life that feeds you emotionally and creatively.

Some relationships aren’t only unpleasant they can be destructive to your health, physical as well as mental, and your creativity if you allow them to go on too longer. You owe nothing to anyone who is an emotional vampire, sapping your energy and capacity for happiness until you live a life that is drained, unhappy, and unfulfilled.

Perhaps a friendship that you had thought was solid was really built on shaky ground or the person you thought was a friend turned out to be someone whose ideas on life have become detrimental to you. Or a love relationship is making you more unhappy than happy. Changes, as hard as they may be, need to be made.

Live life your way  

Actor Sandra Bullock has the right idea about living life her way. She once said that her attitude is what’s made her happy.

I never did anything according to what anyone else wanted. That’s why I think I am happy. I do everything 100 per cent. I fight every single day to live my true life because I don’t ever want to come home saying, ‘I should have spoken my mind. I shouldn’t have let someone tell me how to live.”  

What a great piece of advice!

The hell with what others have. Make your life enviable!

Jealousy is a human emotion and perfectly normal. You couldn’t get through life without having been bitten by the green-eyed monster at least once. But here’s the problem—when you allow the envy to consume you, you are creating your own misery. Never spend part of every single day obsessing over what other people have or how they live. Spend more time on thinking of ways to make your life become the way you want it to be.

Remember that the happiest people are the ones who enjoy what they have, create attainable goals, and think of ways to make life better for themselves first. Become one of them. Seriously, whose life are you living? Make sure you’re living for you and that you make your own life an adventure worth taking.

© 2021 copyright Kristen Houghton all rights reserved


  • Kristen Houghton

    Kristen Houghton

    Thrive Global

    Kristen Houghton is the award-winning author of the popular series, A Cate Harlow Private Investigation.  She is also the author of nine novels, two non-fiction books, a collection of short stories, a book of essays, and a children’s novella. Her horror novel, Welcome to Hell, was nominated for a Bram Stoker Award. Houghton has covered politics, news, and lifestyle issues as a contributor to the Huffington Post. Her writing portfolio includes Criminal Element Magazine, a division of Macmillan Publishing, Today, senior fiction editor at Bella Magazine, interviews and reviews for HBO documentaries, OWN, The Oprah Winfrey Network, and The Style Channel. Before becoming a full-time  author, Kristen, who holds an Ed.D. in linguistics, taught World Languages on the high school and university levels. Along with her husband, educator Alan William Hopper, she is a philanthropist for Project Literacy and Shelters With Heart, safe havens for victims of domestic abuse and their pets . mailto:  [email protected]