- Thoughts for inspired living

March 9, 2016

Hurdle to Happiness

Filed under: John Morgan's Blog — John Morgan @ 7:52 am

Declaration of Independence“One of the biggest hurdles to get over in life is that your unhappiness is someone else’s fault.” So said The Grasshopper.

As long as the cause is out there somewhere, unhappiness will remain in here.

It’s quite the lesson to learn to own your own unhappiness. It’s also transformative.

As long as you assign it to a person, place or thing, your unhappiness will continue to cling. Once you have the realization that you have unhappiness within you without assigning blame, you will get ahead of the game – the game of assigning cause to something outside of you.

The transformation begins when we end using the word “because.” “I’m unhappy because . . .”

“Because” by its nature justifies whatever we’re “be-causing.” It’s much more useful to stop at the word “unhappy,” as in “I’m unhappy.” Notice the period after “unhappy.” Or use the phrase spiritual writer Eckhart Tolle recommends: “I have unhappiness within me.”

Assigning unhappiness to an outside cause will trip you up every time. Yes, you may have an unhappy response to an event that’s outside of you, but the sensation of unhappiness will linger as long as you continue to point a finger. Reminds me of a story I’ve told before . . .

Years ago, I was driving on interstate 95 at about 65 miles an hour when I was cut off by someone traveling at a much higher rate of speed. My car swerved out of the way and it was a hairy situation for the next moment or two. Thankfully, I was able to regain control of my car, but not my feelings. My body was filled with adrenaline and my head was packed with profanity.

I was issuing an out loud tongue tirade about the situation and the feelings in my body were getting worse. Lucky for me that I noticed what was happening. I immediately took massive deep breaths and audibly and forcefully expelled them with loud sighs. That action dissipated the excess adrenaline, and now I had to deal with the “because.”

I could have gone on for hours, days or weeks about the idiot who cut me off but all that would do is revivify the experience and keep the sensations inside. I had to interrupt the thoughts that continued to assign my mental state to someone who belonged in a state hospital. Once I continually interrupted the thoughts of blame, they melted and faded away and so did any lingering feelings from the situation.

Here’s something you can do when you notice unhappiness within you: Recognize that whatever cause you have assigned it will not take it away, only keep it in play. Take some deep breaths and audibly sigh them away. The final step is to continually interrupt the thoughts associated with your unhappy mental state until they move on.

Often it’s just enough to recognize that you have unhappiness within you. Just the noticing starts the ball rolling and you can then, as it says in the Declaration of Independence, pursue happiness.

All the best,


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