How I Became Happy and Positive Despite the Problems I Went Through | The Realistic Optimist

How I Became Happy and Positive Despite the Problems I Went Through

8:32 PM

Storm

I used to think that I will only have true happiness once all my dreams come true, but that would be impossible because of the seemingly endless problems I was experiencing before. It’s hard to be happy and stay positive when life doesn't seem to give you any reason to.

Finding a decent job was difficult for me at that time because I was still an undergraduate. I worked in fastfood chains as part of their service crew and for five years I was moving from one joint to another because these establishments rarely regularize their staff. I also tried working in a factory but unfortunately, I wasn't able to finish my contract due to a rift with an inspector. I wasn't happy with what I was doing because it’s not my passion and simply a means to an end. These jobs don’t pay big. I was earning very little, yet I still have to provide financial support to my family because my parents’ income was not sufficient for us. I didn't intend to stay in this rut, so I told myself that I would work hard so that eventually, I can work in a company where my skills and talents will be used—a place where I can have happiness in my career.

Aside from career problems, I felt even more discouraged because of my father. It’s hard to get along with him. Every single day he would scold and barrage me with his complaints. That’s why I used to spend most of my time with my friends.

My self-esteem also suffered. I had a hard time expressing myself because I felt like I wasn't important and worth listening to. That’s why I only had a few friends. I didn’t mingle with others because I was afraid that I would be discriminated because my family was not doing financially well.

Even our neighbors and relatives threw negative and hurtful words at me. They said that I wouldn't get far in life, that we would stay poor. All these insults filled my heart with anger.

Problems with career, money, family and a whole lot more—if you’re experiencing these things, would you find it in your heart to be happy?

I searched for ways on how I can stay positive amidst the trials I was going through.


I didn't want to endure the same problems as I grow older. I had to act. I prayed hard to God and asked Him how I can find happiness and peace in my situation, and He guided me on how I can do exactly that.

It all started when I watched a video and read books about the law of attraction. I took what I learned to heart and lived them out. I believe that through willpower and prayer, I will truly be happy. It was hard at first because it felt like I was just pretending, but eventually it became the norm for me and it began feeling more natural. For three years, I focused on appreciating my blessings than thinking about my problems. I also used positive affirmations so that I will remain happy and calm at all times.

All of these encouraged me to react positively to my hard experiences and to those people who hurt me. Because of that, I was able to accept my situation and live peacefully even if things are not exactly going my way.

I realized that I will not find true happiness in money and material things.


TV and society have a huge influence on our beliefs and how our characters are built. We were made to believe that we will be truly happy once we’re successful—which for them is measured by wealth. When I started having a different outlook, I realized that spending money is not a prerequisite to true happiness.

We need money in order to buy things that are necessary for us to live. Yes, it’s important in that sense, and I will be a hypocrite if I say that I don’t need even a single cent to survive. Though money is essential, our happiness shouldn't depend on it and the frivolous things that it can buy. If you let it dictate your outlook in life, you will only end up frustrated. Remember that true happiness is priceless, just like the air you breathe.

"When life gives you lemons, make lemonade."


I learned to accept that not every person and every circumstance would be favorable to me. Take for instance the behavior of others and the health of my loved ones.

I started to question myself because of the misfortunes that my family and I were experiencing. My brother needed to undergo operation due to appendicitis and my mother was rushed to the hospital several times due to hypertension. To make matters worse, we were financially struggling when these happened.

I realized that life is unpredictable. Not every day will go as I want it to. Being joyful and optimistic is not a guarantee that you will live a life that’s free from catastrophes. So, instead of grumbling and being frustrated, I learned to accept all my experiences and chose to look on the bright side of life.

I learned to love myself.


Loving myself doesn’t mean I became selfish and just did whatever I pleased. It’s far from that. I learned to love who I am when I became aware of myself and strived to correct my past mistakes. I also worked hard on appreciating my good qualities and avoiding self-criticism.

I chose who to spend my time with.


Before, I only hang out with people who can appreciate me because I get gratification and affirmation from them. However, things has changed and the people I call friends now are those who accept me no matter what and who help bring out the best in me with no conditions. And I do the same for them, so it’s a healthy give-and-take relationship.

I searched for ways to make myself happy and keep my zest in life


Once a week, I make it a point to go out with my siblings and friends just to have fun. I also treat myself once in a while, especially if I get too stressed at work. I watch movies, I dine out, I meditate etc. I make sure that I have some “me-time” each day, so that I can relax and do what I want.

Apart from that, I find happiness in helping others. I feel pure joy when I help others change their lives for the better. Each time I receive e-mails from readers thanking me for the advice that they get from this blog, I feel a deep sense of fulfillment, and this inspires me to continue what I’m doing.

My past endeavors helped me in so many ways. Until now, there are moments when I still can’t believe that the goals I wrote in my journal five years ago have already come true. Looking back, I realized that all my dreams materialized because I chose to be happy even when I was going through different trials. Yes, I still experience problems now but I’m not as affected as I was before.


Today, I’m sure of my happiness and I will whole-heartedly share it with my family, friends, and other people.

This is based on what I learned from my experiences and people I usually spend time with. How about you? What makes you happy?

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