How to be happy is a topic that I find crops up almost every day with not only my clients but with friends, family and colleagues.  Despite being a coach, it still never fails to surprise me when during conversation, it becomes obvious that others are purposefully avoiding happiness yet openly pursuing it.  Oh, the irony!  Indeed, I myself have lived this way for most of my life, not recognising that I had the capacity to always be healthy and well because healthy and well is my natural state.  Learning of the principles behind clarity and how thought affects our experience in any given moment was my catalyst to begin to access success.  Success in my relationships, business, health, infact, in all areas of my life.  As my grounding in the principles deepens, my experiences of and in life lift, become lighter and brighter, yours can too.

Speaking to a friend of mine recently whom I had not seen for around 10 years and she was telling me, quite intently, of her dreams, her future goals and her great aspirations.  Whilst she was using such phrases as “I cannot wait until…..” and “Everything will be great when….”.   I sat quietly and just listened to her future plans and how some day, when she had everything she wanted, life would be great.  “Of course” she explained, “after such a stressful and sad time following the divorce, I know I just need to get back on my feet and then I can follow my own dreams”. Whilst I wholeheartedly agree that space to greave is definitely a good place to start following any such traumatic life event, whether it be divorce or death, I quietly asked her why she believes that ‘being back on her feet’ is a future event?  She stopped right there and I sensed her understanding shift as her realisation of the fact that there was nothing preventing her from being happy now, impacted her.  My emotion mirrored hers as I felt her heart swell, I was right there with her, connected and feeling love.

Most of course, do move forward and go on to live happy healthy lives, but, there are some who, for one reason or another, do not.  It is so easy to get stuck in resentment and pain and embody that pain as their identity.  Before they know it, they are unknowingly playing out the role of being victims of their thinking, however, would you ever dare point this out?  I would advise caution and instead, simply point them gently to their inner connection, their innate wellbeing, with love and empathy.

You see, very few people really want or enjoy being a victim or even recognise that they are.  Often, when stuck in their grief and pain, it is due to fear, guilt and anxiety rather than need or desire and the fact that we are simply feeling our thinking from moment to moment.  That is both our human gift and our failing.  Our ability to think, conceptualise, form perceptions and weigh up possibilities does not always afford us the freedom we would assume that it does.  We all at some time, lose someone whether it be death or the end of a relationship and we experience a whole host of emotions and although this is perfectly natural and normal, to stay for longer than necessary in those emotions is not healthy.

My friend for instance, her divorce was finalised over 3 years ago and the relationship had broken down 18 months beforehand.  Although there are no set rules for how long the grieving process should or can take, over 4 and a half years later, one could be closer to becoming comfortable with the idea.  There could be an element of acceptance and a mellowing of the emotions rather than the raw pain experienced in those early days.  An inability to deal with or move through grief extends stress and anxiety and can mentally paralyse the person experiencing such emotions.

An understanding of Clarity and it’s principles can help to move someone through this process and towards a settled state.  Thought is always the culprit.  Once we understand how the mind operates and that emotion is borne of thought, it easier to gain an isight into how people get stuck in their own grief. Emotions are powerful and the effects are often physical, leaving one in pain.  This cycle can feel scary and almost always leads to further pain and further thoughts.  Our thought though, is neutral and says nothing about the actual experience, until we think it does.  Thought is a perception of actual reality and not a mirror of reality as we might assume.

Being able to take a break from thought is a huge help and most people do this naturally in a reasonable amount of time.  Even the briefest break from thought can be helpful and doesn’t always have to be noticed.  In fact, often, these small breaks occur naturally when distracted by conversation with others, social events, work and so on and gradually extend themselves for longer periods, giving the mind that much needed rest from the chatter and a natural recovery ensues.  Understanding that we are only ever living in the present moment, for that is the only moment we have, can help thought to begin to drop away and bring space for fresh thought.  Along with that come new opportunities, new thought, new perspectives on experiences in the moment and space to continue to connect with our own innate health and wellbeing.

If you recognise that someone you know is or may be suffering in this way, one of the kindest and most loving things you can do is to reach out and connect with them.  Listen to what they have to say without judgement and really hear their message and show that deep level of understanding that they so need.

We are human, thought created feeling is one the traits of humanity, but, it can also be drawback.  Once we get a deep understanding of how our mind works, we can change our inner peace.  We then know in our essence that losing someone does not signal the end of a connection with a loved one, for that will always remain.  We are after-all, each connected to each other and learning to appreciate that we live in the present moment, we can really begin to experience that connection.

The all illusive question, how to be happy following a difficult and upsetting experience does not lie in the future, the answers are always in the present.  One of the commonest thoughts to prevent happiness is blame.  Blaming a partner for ending a relationship or blaming oneself for not being able to save it, is not rare.  But if thoughts don’t move on to acceptance, at some point, the feelings created by remaining in that blame state are often anger or guilt and or any other number of insecure thoughts and feelings.

We are always acting in accordance to what our own perceptions of the world are and perceptions are illusions.  Someone else’s perceptions of the same situation may be totally different and so how do we resolve this?  Well certainly, we can argue it out and try to work out who is right and who is wrong, however, both or all parties are right as we can do no more than act in accordance to that which we perceive to be true or correct.  Knowing this, really gaining an insight into the principles brings clarity and makes it easier to see how these misunderstandings arise and can in turn alleviate guilt, anger and blame.  In fact, we are all subject to the same misunderstanding and so in this vein, we are innocent of blame.  What you experience, perceive, is true for you, therefore, that is the only truth available in that moment.  Another or a different truth is however, only a thought away and opens up the possiblity for a whole new and different experience.

If you are interested in finding out more about Clarity and the underpinning principles to help support yourself or someone you know through a difficult and traumatic time you can email me on nicky@nickybartley.com