5 Ways to Realistically Be Happy: Or, Weeding Through the Bullshit

The whole idea of positive thinking is wonderful. Duh. I have no real issues with it, whatsoever, aside from the fact that I think sometimes “mentors” or “gurus” promote this notion that if you click your heels and think happy thoughts, all will be well in your world.

Having dealt with my owns up and downs, traveling to hell and back and making it out alive (and kickin!) I have some things I want to share. Happiness is a journey, littered with mistakes, epiphanies, horrific meltdowns, empowering moments that make you feel like you’ve reached nirvana, and a flurry of other emotions that will keep you on your toes.

As a life coach, I kind of cringe a little when I see people promoting this idea of “perfect happiness.” Blogs awash with glossy, uplifting quotes and images of dandelion fields that never talk about REAL life. No mention of the epic meltdowns you might have while trying to figure your shit out. No mention of the mortifying missteps you may take even if you really are generally in a good place.

Some coaches, gurus, teachers — whatever you want to call them — are adamant about never talking about your own fuck-ups. I couldn’t disagree more. I think we relate to each other more based on our imperfections than we do on anything else. And I for one would never, ever want to send a message that I have it all figured out, because I sure as hell do not. What I do share are my experiences; my triumphs, my failures, my wounds, my dreams, my wins. It’s full disclosure at all times.

There is no such thing as perfect. Nobody is more enlightened than the next. We are a team of people, put here in this universe to help each other. Nobody dictates excellence. We’re all growing and learning and if you’re not, then you’re stunting yourself. I just so happen to be one of those people that can wrap my words up in a bow and put them out there for people to read and vibe on. And I have a compelling desire to share what I’ve learned with other women and egg them on to achieve their own version of greatness.

So while I’ll never preach perfection, I can give you a few tips that will help you achieve realistic happiness, sans bullshit:

  1. Sometimes love just ain’t enough – Love is a fucked up thing, for a lack of a better term. Realizing that just because you love someone doesn’t mean you belong with them will save you loads of heartache. We’re not all compatible, even if we are in love.
  2. You don’t have to live your passion 24/7 – You know I’m all about following your passions. Without heart, life is pointless. But don’t be bummed if you can’t do what you love for a living right now. We have responsibilities; bills, mortgages, marriages, children. While you can’t throw caution to the wind and run off to Barcelona to stitch handmade blankets, you can definitely incorporate your passions into your every day life. Every bit counts.
  3. Nobody is responsible for your happiness but you – I’m over the victim bullshit. Your dad, your mom, your ex, your best friend – done. You are the keeper of your happiness. You control your emotions. Don’t give up the power to anyone else. It’s yours to own.
  4. Bad days are okay – I’m definitely hard on myself when I get into a funk. “But I was so happy last week!” We’re human. We have emotions. We get our periods. It can’t all be roses. Expect and accept. The good days will be that much sweeter.
  5. Stop trying to control everything – because you never, ever will. Set the bar high for yourself, but when it comes to others, let them be. People don’t learn by being controlled. Do them a favor and allow them to grow on their own.

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Showing 3 comments
  • Diana Antholis

    I love this! Especially #1. I learned that the hard way.

  • The Champagne Diaries

    Didn't we all? 🙂

  • Stylemindchic

    Hi Cara, Your thoughts truly echo with me. As a School Psychologist/Lifestyle blogger I'm trying to find that balance between living/working your passions. I make a difference in my day job and yet am loving the creative outlet and expression of blogging. I agree-we must have both…therein lies the balance.
    Congrats on your new Life Coach practice!
    I've been reading your blogs long before I started one myself. You are inspiring.
    Cheers, Heather

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