When we look deep inside ourselves, we should ask ourselves what makes us so happy that we don’t hide our happiness from others. What is it that separates us from the times when we were dissatisfied with ourselves? It is love. Love is the one and only thing which always leads us to happiness, inner satisfaction, peace, mutual understanding… First the love of ourselves, and then of everyone else.
Why don’t we allow happiness to knock on our door, what are we afraid of? First of all we are afraid of our own selves when we don’t admit to ourselves that it is good to be happy and that people who are unhappy won’t suffer due to our happiness. When we show our happiness to the outside world, it becomes a part of us. When we look within and tell ourselves, ‘I’m happy and I’m going to show this to everyone,’ those who envy us will gradually distance themselves from us all on their own, because our happiness will have made them even more painfully aware of their unhappiness and dissatisfaction they carry inside.
The path to happiness isn’t always easy, sometimes we need to get rid of all the clutter burdening us day after day, and find our place under the sun among our equals. Whenever we want to feel happy, we should start celebrating even the smallest part of our day which will bring us joy. At times we are afraid that other people won’t accept us the way we really are, so we conform to that belief and want to please others. At other times we fear that no one in our life will love us the way we are, so we create a desire to be different, to be the way that other people will like us. We suppress our true emotions and come across as cold, since we don’t dare to show what we are feeling in a certain moment because our feelings may not be consistent with what we think other people expect from us. So we grow increasingly similar to everyone else day by day, caught in the everyday mediocrity. But when we decide not to live for others anymore, we shall begin to live for ourselves, please ourselves and become who we truly are.
When we become who we really are, it is time to let go of everything we are not. If people around us disagree with our new image, it is their own problem, not ours. We can say to them, ‘I’m sorry I’m not the way you would like me to be, but this is my life.’
When we are changing, we encounter numerous obstacles on our way, but if we are self-confident, inwardly believe firmly that we can do it and that we are the ones who will succeed, it won’t be difficult to overcome any obstacle. But where do the patterns holding us back stem from? They are dormant within us and lead us through everyday life either consciously or unconsciously. The unconscious patterns have been part of us for a very long time, eventually they have become the emotional mental programme directing our life, our way of thinking… These are the things we have picked up from our parents, our environment, some we have cultivated ourselves… Then there are also the conscious patterns, our character… If we look within and observe ourselves, we will discover which of our characteristics can make us proud and which can’t. If we try and change everything we can about ourselves, and accept everything we cannot change, we are already on our way to our new image which will pave the way to our happiness and satisfaction. As long as we are dissatisfied with ourselves, we are annoyed by everything in other people as well. Only when we begin to accept ourselves, with all our pluses and minuses, with all our peculiarities, shall we find ourselves on the way to shaping our personal character we will eventually take pride in.
The world won’t look more beautiful because it will have changed for the better, but because we will have changed. And if we change, the world shall change by that much as well. By radiating happiness and with our new self-image we will act as a role model for many who will follow us on their way to happiness and personal satisfaction. And that is the right path to transformation transcending personal happiness.
While searching for personal happiness we sometimes get caught in a vicious circle and cannot seem to find a way out of the existing situation which keeps repeating itself over and over again. Some people give up and resign themselves to their fate, others keep fighting, but only few find a way out of a crisis immediately. For example, we are disturbed by what someone is doing to us, but instead of telling them about it, we keep our dissatisfaction to ourselves. Or else someone hurts us and then withdraws from us, thus preventing us from dealing with emotions we are experiencing, or we experience a loss and act outwardly calm while suffering inwardly and we cannot express our natural emotions. In such cases we bottle our emotions up, turn them against us and create emotional blocks in our body which prevent us from expressing our emotions even when we do want to show them outwardly. Many people have been disappointed in their intimate relationships more than once. Later in life they tend to find it more difficult to connect with others, they don’t open up or show their emotions, since they are afraid of another disappointment and their fear is stronger than their love. In all those instances it is us who place limitations upon ourselves, which hinder us in everyday life. After we have been suppressing natural emotions for a long time, it often happens that they suddenly burst out as their opposites and become an even greater burden for us.
That happens mostly because our inner and outer self-images are moving further apart. On the inside we suffer, while on the outside we pretend to be happy. That causes severe stress for our body. Eventually, the body itself turns on the defense mechanism and creates inner peace by balancing out our inner and outer self-images. The inner image begins to show outwardly as an expression of the consequences of bottled-up emotions; for example, when the suppressed emotion is sadness, inner peace is created through the manifestation of depression. That way our body frees itself from constantly having to put on a front which doesn’t match what we feel inside. This becomes even more evident considering the fact that a considerable amount of time elapsed between repressing an emotion and the emotional balancing which is expressed outwardly. This means that we don’t deal with certain emotions as soon as they are aroused by an event, but instead suppress them, only to see them erupt later on in a situation which is no longer appropriate for releasing those emotions.
A similar process occurs with mental patterns which hold us back at every step. We create views and perceptions of most everyday things, and form deeply rooted rules of what is right and what wrong…
What is also extremely important on our path of transformation is accepting the fact that we can only change ourselves, we can never change others. Indeed, we often try our hardest to change people around us, but we keep forgetting that the only one we can change is ourselves and that others will change if we change first. This is particularly the case in intimate relationships. If we are unhappy with our relationship, we need to make the first step and change ourselves, and that is the only way the relationship will change. It is also important to allow our partner to be him or herself, and not limit them in any way. We can only limit ourselves, with our conscious and subconscious patterns, whereas we need to allow our partner their personal freedom. Personal freedom is irreplaceable.
The first step to accepting ourselves is to accept all our plusses as well as minuses, to change everything we can about ourselves and accept what we cannot change. And when we accept ourselves, other people won’t disturb us anymore. Next, the path to our love leads us further through wisdom and inner peace. The latter will be achieved when our body is completely relaxed and unburdened with everyday stress, troubled relationships… What happens in our life are events, and it is our subjective emotional-mental responses to them that cause stress. If we accept everything that happens to us as something good, although it may not seem as such at first glance, the events in our life won’t be stressful for us anymore. That goes especially for events we have no influence over. We often get involved in all sorts of things, and then get annoyed when the consequences result in further unpleasant situations. It is therefore extremely important to learn to accept responsibility for and the consequences of our actions. When we master that, we grow up.
Similarly, events which occur as a consequence of our mistakes won’t be stressful for us either. Everyone has found different ways of limiting the effects of stress and release the tension resulting from them. Some people go to a bar, do extreme sports or overwork, some use sex as a release, others take their anger out on a punching bag… But if we haven’t got a coping mechanism at our disposal in the moment, the tension only builds up within us. Furthermore, these methods of release only function for a short while, in the long run they are inefficient. It is therefore in our best interest to prevent the events from having a stressful impact on us. Whenever it does still happen, we can meditate for a couple of minutes and work through all our tensions and strains. That way we will have limited the effects of stress on our life in the very beginning.
In everyday life, meditation can help us in various ways. It is a form of relaxation and a way of establishing contact with oneself. By meditating we relax inwardly, calm our thoughts and generate within us the creative power to resolve all everyday problems. And when we learn how to incorporate our spiritual help into our meditation practice, the process of working through our stresses and strains becomes significantly faster. Our spiritual path is our life itself. We know that reading countless spiritual books, going to everything that resembles spirituality and then thinking about how enlightened one is, doesn’t make one a spiritual person. We become spiritual when we put our life in order; when we resolve all our difficulties and learn to deal with even the smallest problems as soon as they arise, when we create strong physical foundations which will be the base of our future. That way we also balance our life and achieve perfection in our existence. That is when spirituality becomes an upgrade in our life and opens up higher goals of our life.