In Man’s Search for Meaning by eminent psychologist, Viktor E. Frankl he writes, “Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of human freedoms – to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way,”
At any given time, whether we believe it or not, we all have a choice as to how we can respond to any set of circumstances. It is not always easy, but making a conscious effort to be aware that we have this power to choose is what can make all the difference in our lives.
“It was in fact this realisation, that I had a choice in how I was going to respond to my divorce that was the turning point in my life,” says Stacey Lewis, Divorce Coach and founder of The Divorce Source, an online platform that provides support and information for women who are divorced or who are going through a divorce.
Eight years ago Stacey found herself unexpectedly divorced, not being able to cope with the trauma and dwindling to 38kg in weight until one day a friend asked her, “When are you going to choose happiness?”
Here are 8 ways to start you on your journey:
1. Schedule time for happiness
Physically take your diary and pencil in at least one activity a day that makes you happy – it can be as simple as taking the dog for a walk.
2. List at least three things you are grateful for each day.
Being in a state of gratitude creates more happiness and abundance.
3. Fake it till you make it
Force yourself to smile and laugh if you have to – your body doesn’t even know the difference. Even fake laughter produces endorphins which is a natural stress reliever and makes you feel good.
4. Surround yourself with positive people that uplift you.
Spend time with people who make you laugh and make you feel good about yourself. So often, when going through a divorce, people surround themselves with fellow divorcees. Although you may feel a connection between kindred spirits, this is not always a positive move. Balance this with spending time with people that have been through a similar situation but have emerged triumphant.
5. Make yourself a power music mix.
Play it every morning or whenever you feel down. It’s quite difficult to feel sad while listening to “I’m walking on Sunshine.”
6. Challenge yourself to try new things
Explore what makes you happy. Join a club, try a new hobby.
7. Change your posture.
Stand tall, puff your chest out, assume a “power pose”. Try it out – it’s a real challenge to try and feel depressed while in a power pose. After just two minutes in a power pose, your chemistry begins to change. Imagine the impact if you do this daily!!Write your story as if you are an outsider. This creates a distance between yourself and “your story”, which sometimes allows you to see things differently.
8. Start journaling
Even if it means just 2 -3 lines on things changing (even if they do so slowly). Pen your thoughts.