All people are happy. Yes, I said it! I honestly believe that all people are, or at least have the capacity to be, happy. However, destructive decisions and actions can prevent happy people from accessing their inner happiness.
Throughout my 20s I was known as the "life of the party," the one that could out drink a 250-pound man while dancing on a table in 6-inch heels. I identified with these destructive actions and honestly thought that they made me happy (and cool). But I was far from being happy with myself, with my life or with the people around me. I might even go as far to say that I was miserable.
I eventually started to be mindful of how my actions were affecting my body, my mind and my soul.
The conscious changes I chose to make in my life started with three questions that I began to ask myself, all of which pertained to my drinking habit. If you feel as if you could be happier in your life then ask yourself the same following (and very simple) questions to see if drinking is making you miserable. Just think: your happiness is in your hands!
1. How do you feel after a night of drinking?
This is always the easiest question to ask after a night of drinking and the hardest question to remember before a night out. How many of you have sworn off alcohol after a crazy night of drinking? I see the hands. Your energy is low, your mind is slow, your body is woozy and you seriously don't feel like doing anything. But honestly, how do you feel about yourself?
When you are ready to be honest with yourself after a night of drinking, write down your feelings and keep them in a journal so you can use this as a reference point.
2. Are you trying to "achieve" something by drinking?
A lot of people associate alcohol with relaxing, unwinding, celebrating, having fun or coping with various life stresses. Is drinking actually achieving these goals or is it just numbing your body and brain to the circumstances around you that are the cause of these concerns?
I think it is important to ask yourself what would really help you accomplish the state in which you would like to be. For me, I know that when I want to celebrate I really just want to be with my friends to dance and laugh. Or when I need to relax it is best for me to practice yoga nidra or take a candle lit bubble bath.
It is up to you to figure out what works for your body, your mind and your soul. So have some fun discovering what makes you tick! Experiment and see what puts a smile on your face or what eases your stress. You could even make a "Things To Do" list as a reminder to all the activities that put you in a good mood.
3. What kind of people do you attract when you are drinking?
The laws of attraction definitely apply to the type of people you are calling in when you are drinking. For instance, if you were to break down your friends into categories, how many of them would be placed in a category other than "drinking buddy"?
It was an unfortunate/fortunate wake-up call for me when I realized that most of my friends were only my friends when the bottles were poppin'. They also knew very little about me. That which made me see that I was calling them in for one reason only: misery likes company.
I challenge you to evaluate your friends and see which ones are there for the party and which ones are there for YOU. And don't be afraid to shut doors. If you believe that you deserve to have good people in your life then they will appear.
If alcohol doesn't bring the best out in you then why are you drinking? This is a great time of year to become the person you know you are. So be kind to yourself. You can choose to allow yourself to be truly happy.