So if you look back at January, my happiness journey was off to a great start. However, I must admit, this past week I’ve slacked on my goal to spend one hour a day doing something that makes me happy, whatever that might be. Like I explained before, I’m a workaholic. It drives my friends and family crazy. But, you know what I say to that? I’m happy when I’m doing work I enjoy. I’m not happy unless I’m pushing myself to learn and grow in my work. Even when it’s hard, and I am feeling like I’m missing sleep, I still end up being better off for having gone through it in the end. So, while I’m trying to find more relaxing time and enjoy doing things outside of work, I will always be a workaholic and I’m okay with that.
I’ve thought hard about what to pick for February, and I must say that I’m not really choosing it all by myself – God is nudging me. My choice for February is to spend at least 30 minutes a day in complete silence and prayer. You might think this is meditation. Well, maybe it is, but I’ve never been good at meditation so I’m choosing not to call it that. I also know that what you’re about to read, may be controversial. I don’t really care, because this is about my happiness journey, not yours.
If you’re not a spiritual person, you might be asking yourself, “Why would she choose prayer for happiness?” The answer to this is simple for me. I am a very spiritual person – not religious, but definitely spiritual. What do I mean by this? I don’t attend church on a regular basis but I do enjoy a good sermon. I am not into all the religious practices that normally go along with being a dedicated member of a church. I’ve been down that road in my past, and it did not make me happy. For myself, I was way less connected with God when I was going to church all the time, because I was doing it for the wrong reason; I was doing it because that’s what was expected of me. When I was away from church, I only opened the bible to prepare for my Sunday school lesson, and only prayed when I wanted something from God, not to pray with gratitude. Granted, I do want to get back into a good church, but now I want to do it because I want to be of service to God and help others, not because that’s what is expected of me. I want a church where I can look forward to going and be sad when it’s time to leave. I want a church that is accepting of all people. Honestly, I feel that the reason I never felt like I fit in before is because I was not exercising my spiritual muscle. Yes, that’s right, I was NOT in constant connection with MY God. Now, I feel that I will find the right church for me, and I am confident enough in my relationship with God that I don’t have to feel any pressure by anyone. God will guide me to a loving and accepting church, where I can be free to be myself. I can serve my God and be of service to others, and be happy. If someone doesn’t like that I decide to stay home on a Sunday to get some much needed rest, then that’s their problem, not mine. My God will still love me no matter what. You see, I can be just as connected to my God at home, as I am in a manmade building we call church. I could go off on a tangent now of how I know the scriptures say we should assemble together, and my view about this, but that’s a whole other issue. I’m not here to argue any points about religion (remember, I’m not a religious person). I’m simply letting you know where I am today in my life, and why. I pray regularly (maybe you can call it religiously). I read the bible some days (but not as much as I should). I talk about God with my friends and family on a regular basis. I am a Christian, but I’m also open to other religions. When I die, I know I’m going to a better place. You are entitled to agree or disagree with my choices, but it doesn’t affect me, whatsoever. Keep in mind, this is what I choose. If you disagree, that’s your choice. I’m just being honest, and doing what I feel works for me – right or wrong.
Again, why did I pick 30 minutes of silence and prayer each day for my February happiness project? Well, I try to pray every morning and every night. I also pray all throughout the day. My life is often chaotic so sometimes this prayer is rushed or in a setting with many distractions. For example, I find myself often praying when I’m driving down the road. I truly believe God hears all prayers no matter how or where you pray them; however, I also believe that we should humble ourselves before God when possible, and get down on our knees and pray. Having said this, I’m committing to finding a place without any distractions where I can truly have a conversation with God. I need to not only speak, but I need to listen. Instead of sometimes rushing with my prayers in the mornings. I am going to make sure I slow down and take that time with God. I find that when I really take the extra time to pray, my day goes much smoother. I walk around with a confidence that God is handling things. I feel peaceful and more happy (which is the goal…right?). So now I will not just go through my prayer list in a rushed way, but I will slow down and listen to God. I will wait in silence for any answers he might want to give me at that moment. If I don’t receive any answers, I will still have the joy of going about my day knowing that I’ve started with a clean slate. I will have confessed my sins and asked for forgiveness, prayed for peace and for people in need (including asking for help with my own shortcomings), and expressed my gratitude for my many blessings that continually flow my way. What a great feeling to start the day off knowing your heart is right with God! That can surely bring me more happiness
One last thought, remember that happiness is a choice. How will you choose to become happier? Your happiness journey is unique. Only you can truly know what will make you happier. I’d love to hear about your choices and experiences.Google+