Saturday, December 31, 2011

I am Happy.

I don't know if any of you have ever noticed, but in my "about me" section of my facebook, it only says 3 words:
I am happy.
That's all I could think to put, because it's really that simple. I am happy.
Now, of course, I have bad days. In the past, I even had some really, really bad days; I've hurt myself before. Many times, actually. And at some points, I really did think the best option was to just end it all. I have been able to get past both of those things for the most part, but please trust me when I say that I have some inner demons that I have to battle. Everybody does. No matter how happy, confident, eloquent, content, or beautiful somebody appears to be, they have hard things, too. That doesn't mean that they aren't really those things that they appear to be, but that's not all that they are. Everybody gets some good, some bad.

I have found that for me to be happy, I simply choose to make the most of the good that I get, while accepting and working through the bad.
Optimism is key, in my opinion. Simply looking for the positive side of any and every situation. At the very least, you can say you learned something new.
Being grateful and counting blessings are great ways to develop optimism.

I don't want it to sound like crying, feeling helpless, or occasionally asking "why me?" makes you bad in any way. I don't think that any of those things are inherently bad. But I do believe that a lifestyle of that is awfully damaging. As I said before, everybody has bad times, some more than others, but as long as you can look forward with faith and realize that though it hurts now, there will be relief, that is what will keep you from becoming angry or resentful.

I believe very strongly that being happy, when you really come down to it, is merely a choice. The fact is, I want to be happy. So I choose to be happy.
I've thought a lot lately about the fact that one of the YW Values is "Choice and Accountability". It's right in there with things like Faith, Individual Worth, and Virtue. Its so important to realize the importance of not only our choices, but the fact that we must accept accountability for those choices. Agency is one of our greatest gifts given to us from God. What better way to use that amazing gift than to choose to be happy?
When we make bad choices in our lives, we can't hurt ourselves or those close to us even more by trying to place the blame somewhere else. Admit your fault, repent, move on, learn, and make better choices that will help enable happiness in your life.
I think so many people make life much more complicated than it needs to be. To me, everything is a choice. There is no need to be acted upon. If you want something to happen, make the choice(s) to make it happen! If you're hurt, choose to forgive. If you're weak, choose to do things that will make you stronger. If you're in need of help, choose to ask what you need from those who are able to help. Often, it takes time to get to where you can fully heal, or forgive, or complete a goal that you've set for yourself. That should go without saying. But it will still be your choices that get you to that point, as well. You always have a choice! My favorite thing to say to pessimists: "only you can choose your attitude." So even if you feel like you have absolutely no options, remember that at least. You can choose to have an attitude of happiness :)

I have kept the faith.

Hugest M.I.A. in the history of my blog. I am not bored of blogging, nor clueless as to what to write, but honestly just can hardly ever seem to convince myself that dragging my lap top to the clubhouse to sit on my butt (for what will undoubtedly be at LEAST an hour) should take precedence over the other number of things that I may have left for my day off (ie, cleaning my bathroom/kitchen/doing laundry/vacuuming/catching up on my dishes/reading a neglected book nearing its due date at the library/visiting friends or RS sisters...etc. you get the idea!)

I am really, really hoping that someday I have the opportunity to regularly write, because I enjoy it immensely. So, rather than try to "update" you on mine and Evan's life (honestly, not much to update anyway) since who knows when I'll write again, I'll just share a few thoughts.

A friend that I follow shared a link to this website, and I came across this article.
Honestly, the whole website it full of incredible articles, but this one really sums up my approach to life.
The 10 things you should be able to say before you die:
1. I followed my heart and intuition.
2. I said what I needed to say.
3. I did what I needed to do.
4. I made a difference.
5. I know what true love is.
6. I am happy and grateful.
7. I am proud of myself.
8. I became the best version of me.
9. I forgave those who hurt me.
10. I have no regrets.

I would like to add my own personal #11. One of my favorite scriptures, if not my most favorite of all, is 2 Timothy 4:7-
"I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith."

I have such a strong testimony of the plan of salvation. I know that there is a greater purpose, for each and every person here on this earth. For me, I have found the most happiness when I try to discover that greater purpose through divine inspiration.
Knowing myself, my weaknesses and natural tendencies, I am fully confident that if I had no knowledge of Heavenly Father, His plan, and how I fit into it, I would not be here. I would have never made it this far in life, and I mean that literally. I would drive myself insane, wondering what the point of doing anything was, until I got so confused and frustrated that I would just end everything. I'm sorry if that's an awful thing to say, but it's simply the truth.

Luckily, I have been blessed with that knowledge. And with that knowledge, I have found a way to live my life to what I would definitely consider "the fullest".
I try to be optimistic. I try to be thankful for what I have. I try to treat everybody with the realization that they are a child of God, which most often is merely a sincere smile and "thank you". I try to be patient. I try to forgive.
Notice that word "try"...I am not by any means perfect. But I am continually trying, and I feel that that is what's important.
I think that making an effort to do these things will help me be able to say those 11 things listed above. Especially my own #11: I have kept the faith.