Nothing can can make you more happier than working on yourself. Did that seem a little typical? See I used to read quotes and paragraphs on how you are your own source of happiness, and quite frankly I scrolled past them.
I was/am very ambitious and my happiness was absolutely determined on my success. I had a notepad with my dreams written down and they were the answer to giving my life enjoyment.
The subject itself is confusing. People will either mention their children or their animals or go down a spiritual route. What I have learnt, is that it is not fleeting. Being happy, that is ever changing. Life will have sad times and moments you would rather not re live. But happiness, that is a complete state that I fully believe is not monumental. Unless you lose the spirit within.
It never mattered how much attention I received or compliments I was given, if I felt insecure, I felt insecure. All my life really I had this horrible self esteem. I once said it was like a black cloud that would come to steal my contentment. Every little flaw was magnified, and to this day if you told me my hair was a mess or my clothes don’t look nice, that would probably hurt me more than I would like to admit.
I kept trying to be happy and by happy I mean with my life and with who I am. It aimed entirely at things that I could do. I tried to be really skinny, then I tried to be really glamorous. I tried to mimic people or stars, anyone that had rays of light that I could potentially capture.
Of course it didn’t work. I always ended up short. Nothing was ever as good, and that taught me that I was never good enough.
Society teaches us to try and fit in, and at the same time to try and stand out. How many times do you hear someone say; “I did this because people are doing it”. That was me, running to whatever without really thinking if I even wanted it.
Nothing can make you more happy than yourself.
Yes, a partner can come and fill your world with laughter and enjoyment. Having money to travel and do what you want can make you much happier. This isn’t about debating what makes a person happy. This is about happiness and living a life where you are free to be who you are, not weighed by negativity and insecurity.
When you look deep down and focus on you embracing-not accepting but embracing, who you are and what you want, life stops looking so half empty, and more half full. If I lose a friend now or if I go through some bad times, I’m not the mess that I was. I’m not fading into a deep hole criticising myself. I get back up, and push myself, and work even harder.
It took me twenty three years to finally wake up one morning, and decide to like myself. I wanted to be happy without even liking myself!
Why do I have insecurity and why do I try to be somebody I’m not? Analysing this question, I realised I had traits I didn’t want and qualities I didn’t want to admit. I completely procrastinate. All the 2am mornings before school trying to write an essay that I was given a month to write. I can be lazy; looking for shortcuts in every direction. Never having the guts to speak my mind or too afraid of standing out.
As I started to tackle these problems revolving in my head, I started being nicer to myself. Slowly I started working on ways to improve my health and to do what I want. As this started to unfold, for the first time happiness appeared in reach. This happiness with myself does not disappear or get tired. It’s not a new piece of clothing that fades after a while.
If a family member makes a comment or a person treats me badly, I don’t blame myself anymore. This level of optimism is there and as I keep making strides with me, it keeps billowing. Keep buying what you love and doing what you love, just remember a permanent solution to happiness is right there inside your mind.
Photographs all captured by Hattie Day.