Do you ever have those days when you’re thinking ‘my god I’m so happy right now, life actually feels amazing’? Then have those days when there isn’t much going on and you actually feel pretty lonely, even though you have many a friends and family within reach and maybe even a great relationship? Or maybe you’re one of those self-assured individuals that feel you’ve mastered, and are able to sustain, a positive optimistic mind-set for the majority of the time but still sometimes never feel ‘complete’?
Well for those of you reading this that follow and read my blogs, you’ll know that I left my job last November to simply (and in all honesty) ditch all responsibility so I could live for a while without stress or worry. I still felt so young to be obsessing about my career and how my life would pan out; I wanted to just experience more ‘fun’ instead of the seriousness that came with settling down and having a plan. But here’s where I always fell down never allowing myself to be truly happy. See if you can see yourself in any of what you’re about to read. Last week I came across this quote…
"You can't finish your masterpiece if you never start it"
…you know the kind of quotes you see that get you thinking and feel they’re speaking just to you, ha! Like for god’s sake stop reminding me (or implying) there’s something I’m avoiding doing or acting on. Anyway, when I saw this quote something hit me. I realised that my view of happiness and how I went about finding it in the past was all wrong. The ‘masterpiece’ for me was always my work, my career, my mission, it was everything. If I didn’t achieve MASSIVE success then I was never satisfied or happy because I’d never felt I’d done enough. For you reading this, what do you think you see as your masterpiece? Is your focus solely on always finding that perfect partner for a relationship, is it on making money or is it on your body image and being in the gym all the time?
The other day I had one of those days when everything felt amazing, I genuinely felt happy and ‘whole’ like everything was happening exactly how I wanted and I was enjoying the uncertainty of things. Now you would think I’d have been content sitting and enjoying that feeling but as usual with my tendency to over-think I started to worry, but what if this feeling goes away and I can’t keep hold of it?!
In that very same moment I stopped my usual pattern of thinking and decided it was a stupid negative way of looking at things, I asked myself a better question. ‘If I feel this happy right now, what is it that’s contributing to me feeling this way?’ I literally asked myself to list the events that had led up to me feeling that good. And do you know what, for the first time ever I realised that all the things that had made me happy were such little things with different people, different situations, environments, and with different feelings and emotions being felt – it was variety, balance! It was nothing to do with one master plan to do with my career or future, it was purely living in the now and appreciating single moments.
If you’re interested in what those moments were, it was things like meeting with a friend for a £2.99 coffee and cake deal (bargain!) :-D …..whilst looking out to sea chatting all about her life and how she’d come to be in the same place as I was travelling. I’d got up to sing at an Open Mic night a couple of nights before even though I was as nervous as always. I submitted my first paid article to a company excited to hear their feedback and had a great night out with new people I’d met the past week, drinking much red wine and laughing A LOT!
So what is the overall point of this blog? My inspiration to you this time around is that your masterpiece is not one single end goal, ambition or result, your masterpiece is your whole life right now and what it looks like on that huge canvas. It’s the big picture, the people, the friendships, relationships, your job, your interests, hobbies and the passions that you choose to pursue.
I will simply finish on mentioning something I learnt from a Ted talk on happiness this week (I’ll post the vid below for those that aren’t familiar with TED). The talk basically sums up and showed after research carried out that the less choice we all have, the happier and more likely we are to appreciate the choices and things we do have. Basically the more options and possibilities available to us, the more confused it leaves us about what the ‘right’ thing to do is in certain situations.
Which brings me to this final thought. I have found that to be happy in life you have to take note of those times when you feel happy and ask what it is that’s making it so. What are the ingredients, the recipe, the method for what's making you tick? When you know or find those things, you’ll know exactly what to keep asking life for more of, what to keep attracting so you can create the kind of life that provides a sustained happiness, not just bursts every few days.
The great news is: You’re the master of your masterpiece, your life. So paint away, paint big, paint in colour and paint continuously until you’ve left no experience to imagination. Live your masterpiece now :)
TED Talk Vid below. 'Why are we happy? Why aren't we happy?'
Katie Bunting's strong desire to make a difference and bring out the best in everyone that crosses her path has never left her.