The world is still in the process of easing into the post-COVID life, and whatever situation you are in, you might be reevaluating your life and priorities right now. 2020 is such a year – we have had time to think about some things in the time that we had to stay at home, and some of us might have lost our jobs or taken a pay cut. In short, we are all trying to stay afloat amidst our different struggles. There are so much questions in our heads, but where do we find the answers? The simple answer is within us, but we don’t need to tell you that. This article seeks to instead give you a hand with the ‘how’ part, and perhaps help to provide a little push in a new direction.
Are you happy?
This is the first and most important question because we are on this earth for such a limited time, happiness is something that is on all our minds.
“I am unhappy with how my body looks.”
“I am unhappy because I’m lacking motivation in life.”
“I am unhappy because I don’t know if I should continue this relationship.”
Whatever your priority, happiness takes an essential place in that equation. So it is important to ask yourself whether you are happy at this point in time. Think about a specific area of life to focus on – love, career, family, finances – and then expand from there. Only when you answer this question can you proceed to explore how you can get yourself there. And if you find that the condition that you are in is lacking and simply will not bring you the happiness you seek, then it is worth your time to consider moving towards something new. If you are one of the lucky ones who answered “Yes” to this question, great! But if you think you can be even happier, read on.
What is plugging that happiness?
Often times when we are stuck, we find ourselves in this endless loop of – “I am unhappy, and I don’t know what to do about that and that makes me even more unhappy.” We get so deep in this unhappiness and dissatisfaction that we do not pause to think about the cause of this deep dissatisfaction.
Consider these things:
- Is the situation you are in causing you unnecessary stress?
- Can something be done to address this stress?
For instance, if you are unhappy about your family situation, is it because of the stress of having to juggle work, household chores and children, while at the same time being concerned that you are not spending enough time working on yourself so that’s causing you further stress about how you feel about yourself? And after identifying this situation (stressor), can you address it? Will talking to your partner about bearing some of the responsibilities at home help? Here, you are breaking down these questions into manageable bits that you can actually answer, so that you are able to put things into perspective. That will eventually go towards helping you understand the big picture. When you understand what the reason is for your unhappiness, you create a direction for yourself to address those issues.
But it’s not that simple…
Of course, things are never that simple. What we put down on paper are not the only things that has to be considered because we are complex beings with a myriad of human connections and emotions that complicates matters. You might be unhappy at a workplace that is causing you unhappiness, but at the same time you need the income to stay afloat so you can’t just up and leave. We get you. Here, we will tell you that the questions you ask yourself are as important as the answers.
You have identified that you are unhappy and what the cause of that is, and now you see that in spite of that realization you need to stay in this situation because of whatever reason. Instead of just letting yourself go in that self-destructive loop again, ask yourself – Can I go in another direction that will give me what I need, but with lesser cause for unhappiness?
“If I’m unhappy in this job because I’m just not seeing the meaning in it anymore, but I need the money to support my family. Is there another way that I can earn what I need to do that?”
We are not saying that it is or will be easy, but it is a start. If you have dreamt of starting your own business, maybe that answer will pop up when you ask yourself that question. Then comes the big, dreaded “But…” that often puts our adventures on halt. We repeat again, going in a new direction is never going to be easy and you are forging a new path for yourself! And also, would you rather have a big, fat and ugly blotch of “What if…” screaming in your face?
One tip that we have for you: start planning for that alternative that you think will make you happier. It can be just for fun or it can be an actual serious sit-down but give yourself some time to explore possibilities on paper and see how you work things out. Somewhere along the way, you might realize that hey, this might actually work, and you already have half the work done – you have the paper plan. Now, you have the choice to take action.
Heading towards a new direction takes lots of courage. Some might do it out of necessity, and others because they want to start chasing their dreams. But for those of us for whom 2020 is really such a low year already, taking a new direction can only mean a fresh start. Take courage, darlings, take that first step in a new direction if that’s what is calling you.