Last week I introduced the  “I’ll be happy when…” scenario (it’s here if you want to catch up).

And, as I mentioned, the first step to almost any change is awareness … awareness of what we are thinking.

What does this have to do with happiness, I hear you ask?

Happiness is a feeling, and feelings originate from what we think about something, i.e. what we feel comes from our thoughts.

If we don’t clean up our thoughts we will continue being unhappy even when…

  • We fall in love with the soulmate of our dreams; get that new job; new promotion; awesome pay rise and finish paying off the debt or move to a new house…

If we don’t change our thinking we take the old thought habits with us and recreate the same result that we wanted to get away from.

I used to have the thought habit; I am lazy, that I couldn’t be bothered to _______ fill in the blank with almost anything; go to the movies, organise my house, get a new job, or even book a holiday.

Now I know and can call myself out on my own BS whenever it comes up again. Because the thought in itself isn’t the problem, BELIEVING the thought is the problem.

Without awareness, we don’t even know it’s happening.

Without my coach showing it to me, I would still believe I am lazy – even with all the evidence pointing otherwise.

I broke the cycle of self-pitying thoughts that constantly created my feelings of unhappiness – The “woe is me, why am I so lazy” thinking that lead to me not doing enough FOR myself result. Constantly. On repeat.

There have been many studies trying to find out how many thoughts we have in a day – some studies state up to 80,000 – and a recent study from 2020 has reduced that number to 6200.

No matter the number, we have a lot of thoughts and when we leave them unchecked; the result is kind of like the proverbial bull in a china shop… a mess!

A lot of our thoughts are reoccurring conversations we have with ourselves; reoccurring thoughts that form habits, what I call thought habits.

As with any habit, we can learn new thought habits. 

Also, as with any habit, we often don’t know we are doing it EVER, unless someone helpful points it out. although, that is often the least helpful thing because unless it’s being pointed out by your loving coach, [who only has your interest in mind and always wants the best for you] you might not ‘hear’ it or believe it is true.

Happiness is a feeling, and feelings originate from what we think about something, i.e. what we feel comes from our thoughts.

If we don’t clean up our thoughts we will continue being unhappy even when…

  • We fall in love with the soulmate of our dreams; get that new job; new promotion; awesome pay rise and finish paying off the debt or move to a new house…

We take the old thought habits with us and recreate the same result that we wanted to get away from.

Now, do you have awareness? Awareness IS always the first step.

My suggestion for the next time you catch yourself saying or thinking “I’ll be happy when…” is to write about it.

Writing or journaling is the most available tool I know. It can be done almost anywhere at any time for any amount of time from 2 minutes to 2 hours. Here is a free journaling course to get you started.

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