I was the sunshine in the room.
That was not always the case. Being the first one to break bad news was always an attention getter, and I was sure that others wanted to know what was happening around them. If I saw an awful news story it seemed my duty to be sure that everyone around me was informed. There was a certain satisfaction to be had from bringing everyone to the same misery I was experiencing or observing. Being a hopeless alcoholic kept me mired in that behavior for years. As I began to surrender my addicted life and started on my recovery path, I began to learn why I did those things. Finally, being tagged the “town crier” by a friend woke me up to what I had been doing.
I was the bucket of slops thrown in your face that ruined your day and frankly, proud of it.
Because I couldn’t figure out how to bring myself out of it, I invited everyone I came in contact with to my pity-party. The smart ones moved on, but I took many hostages along the way. Then someone introduced me to the idea of making gratitude lists. Just a simple exercise to look for things that made me feel good. Write it down. Consider why it made me happy. This one act began to shift my thinking so that I began to notice good things. The color of a flower, the sound of a bird, the precious sound of my child’s laughter, and the way smiling at someone and getting one in return touched my heart. Instead of noticing what my husband was doing wrong, I took note of what he was doing right. And the more I found to be grateful for, the better I began to feel. The better I felt, the better I behaved and treated others.
The more grateful I got, the more I had to be grateful for.
Being grateful creates beautiful healing chemicals in our bodies. Every time we laugh it floods our bodies with hormones that raise our energy, feed our cells, and give us a feeling of connectedness. Sometimes we can start simply by just telling others what we like about them. Writing down what we appreciate in ourselves and others, the world about us, and our experiences can be the compass that leads you from where you are to somewhere much better. Dependent on where you are emotionally, you should notice a gradual change in the way you feel and look at life. Don’t be afraid to ask for help from a coach, a counselor, or someone you know can lift you up energetically. Sometimes we get stuck and need the assistance of someone who can look at our situation objectively.
Be the sunshine in the room, or find a room full of sunshine to be in…your happiness depends on it.