No matter how great your achievements are, happiness doesn’t seem to come from your circumstances. Is it possible to experience happiness all the time? Join author Kirra Sherman as she shares “How to Actually Achieve Happiness… Permanently!”
Written by Kirra Sherman
It can seem as if happiness is the most elusive part of our existence. Have you noticed in your experiences how it comes, and it goes, and the roller coaster of life seems to be ever present? Many people seek balance, but ironically True Happiness is our natural state of being. Have you ever been happy for no reason? YOU CAN’T ACHIEVE HAPPINESS.
Because no matter how great your achievements, happiness doesn’t come from your circumstances. That’s the truth. You only have to realize that who you truly are IS happiness itself. Easier said than done?
I recently came across this quote:
“Pleasure can be supported by an illusion; but happiness rests upon truth.” – Sébastien-Roch Nicolas De Chamfort
What does this mean that pleasure can come from illusion, but happiness depends on truth? And why is it important to your everyday life?
The first really important question to ask yourself is: how important is true, permanent happiness to you?
My personal happiness is the most important thing in my life, and I’d do anything to be one with the feeling of love. I feel like I’ve spent much of my life devoted to finding happiness in some form, whether through my experiences of religion, intellectualism, therapy, science, atheism, philosophy, even partying, and of course, in achievement.
When I was younger, I thought happiness derived from my circumstances, but this is the illusion. The experience of temporary pleasure can be derived from your external circumstances, but true happiness rests on the connection you have to the feeling of love within: who you truly are.
When happiness rests on the truth of presence, rather than the illusion of your circumstances, it becomes possible to experience happiness all the time.
People label that feeling within differently. Some call it presence, consciousness, being, higher self, intuition, your power, life itself, the soul, or love. The one thing many philosophers agree on is that feeling, the truth, can only be experienced in the present moment.
When you are 100% devoted to the present moment, do you not experience that energy of happiness within your body- for no reason?
For most of you reading Identity Magazine, I suspect you’ve likely experienced the truth of your own presence deeply.
So then what gets in the way of living that happy feeling all the time? What takes you away from your own presence and truth of the moment?
In my experience, what gets in the way of truly living in the moment—where we experience joy for no reason—is chasing positive experiences of pleasure and avoiding negative experiences of pain in our external circumstances.
The mind is like a slave driver: “I want more business, more security, more of what I love, more recognition, more love from others, a loving life partner, a new house…” It also says: “I want less hurt, disappointment, rejection, failure… if only I had this… if only I didn’t have that…”
What is important to the wisdom of the heart? Isn’t it just a connection to aliveness itself? And when you follow what you love to do or say, do you not immediately feel more alive?
One of the simplest and greatest ways I’ve learned to cultivate a connection with my true self is following my feeling of the moment to do what I love.
Make your life journey about the love, and love will become your direct experience of life.
Usually people look to create circumstances that will give them a sense of security or love based on what appears possible.
Living the truth of the moment is the opposite: you first connect with the feeling of your presence, second await the messages of your hearts yearning moment to moment, and third act externally. You live this even when you don’t have the money (yet), even if you’re afraid of rejection, even when the world says it’s impossible.
All it takes is a willingness to say yes to the feeling and then your circumstances change to reflect the love of your decisions. But it takes a great level of willingness to make true, permanent happiness possible because living the truth of the moment is completely illogical.
In times of doubt or thinking I was crazy to go after my intuitive feelings, which are often illogical (therefore crazy), my heart once responded with this:
“Ask not: ‘Is this crazy?’ Ask if you’re willing to be crazy to remain true to what you love.”
There is always a risk in following what you love. But if you’re unwilling to give up temporary pleasures or the security you “perceive” your external circumstances give you for the sake of what you love, it’s going to be difficult to experience happiness all the time.
It doesn’t take a genius to figure out that if you’re doing anything in your life that isn’t true to your heart, you’re probably not going to experience as much love as when you’re doing what you love.
Doing what you love doesn’t have to be changing your profession or business, it can be as simple as calling someone, going to a new supermarket if the feeling strikes you, traveling down a different direction than you don’t usually venture down, or speaking how you feel from your heart, which takes vulnerability.
Sometimes it’s allowing yourself to experience pain if that’s the truth of the moment.
When your life is about knowing your true self, you can still experience happiness even when your circumstances don’t look how you want them to because you’re not dependent on your happiness from achieving success, just achieving a connection with your heart.
For example, I’ve failed and let businesses go, but been just as happy as times when I’ve fallen in love. I’ve even experienced the tears of pain from love lost, but while not in the resistance of it, I’ve felt a depth of peace and love in those tears with presence in the moment. It’s a beautiful experience to release pain while in presence, not one of suffering.
When happiness is no longer sought from the external, the illusion, that’s when happiness can flourish because you are experiencing your true self in your presence, who is already happy for no reason.
Another way to cultivate this connection with your truth of the moment is to stop doing everything you think you have to do “because…” especially if you aren’t connected with your own presence regularly.
Because if I don’t ____, this will happen. Because if I don’t ____, then that person won’t be my friend. Because if I say this, I’ll hurt that person. Because if I do that, I’ll lose… because I can’t because…
If you stop doing everything you’re doing out of the agenda to be accepted by others, prove something to yourself, and get security or recognition from your circumstances, you will naturally start to connect with what you love.
There are three main things that get in the way of following what you love: fear, fear, and fear. It is the fear of not being accepted, fear of not having enough, and fear of losing something or someone in your circumstances.
The more emphasis you place on your external circumstances for your pleasure—the illusion—the less willing you will be to live your truth of the moment because of a fear of loss. False Evidence Appearing Real = illusion.
YOU CAN’T ACHIEVE HAPPINESS. Because happiness is who you are when you stop following the goals that come from your thinking mind, and start following the feeling that moves you within from presence, Intuition, the voice of love and inspiration.
The more you follow your heart, the more you realize how that feeling of inspiration who you truly are moment by moment, no matter how much or how little you achieve in the world. It is also then that you will effortlessly achieve what you love in your external circumstances.
I saw this sign in my neighborhood. It made me come alive because I asked myself what I will do before I die.
Before I die…
…I will truly Live.
How about you?
Identity Magazine is all about empowering women to get all A’s in the game of life – Accept. Appreciate. Achieve.™ Every contributor and expert answer the Identity 5 questions in keeping with our theme. As a team, we hope to inspire and motivate ourselves and inspire you to get all A’s.
What have you accepted in your life that took time, physically or mentally?
It’s not just the big stuff that matters, what’s really taken time is all the little stuff that adds up. A friend called me last night to share how she and her partner were fighting about the furniture. “You know it’s not really about the furniture, right?” The little things are pointing to the big things, the things you have power in, judgments (positive and negative charges) that prevent you from connecting with the love inherent in all circumstances. The journey of acceptance as a daily part of my life is what takes time and patience.
What do you appreciate about yourself and within your life?
In this moment, the opportunities I give myself to go beyond my challenges.
What is one of your most rewarding achievements in life? What goals do you still have?
Starting a new business. Writing a book.
What is your not-so-perfect way? What imperfections and quirks create your Identity?
The not-so-perfect way is truly perfect: the willingness to fall down time and time again to learn life lessons that are greater than the momentary stumble. Without judgment, life isn’t so serious.
How would you complete the phrase “I Love My…?”
I Love My … heart.