What Is The Meaning of Happiness?

Hey all! I’ve been MIA for a bit, taking care of things, adulting, and everything else under the sun. Lately, I’ve been either reading, swiping left or right on tinder (I’ll explain later on in this post), or on Netflix for hours at a time. Through it all… I’ve been in a funk

That slump where you don’t feel like doing anything, where while you’re engaging in productivity, you kinda wish you were curled up, in your room reading, or doing anything but.

When I’m in a funk, there are times where I’ll ponder the meaning of a lot of things.

This time, I started thinking about happiness. More specifically:

  • What is it?
  • Why is it important?
  • What do we attribute it to?

Let’s look up the definition of ‘happiness’, shall we?

Def of happiness

Okay… Well that doesn’t give us much of a definition, but by the looks of it, it seems like the word is quickly getting phased out.

Why is it important that we are happy in our lives?

Being happy has been linked to lower stress levels and a sense of ease in one’s life. When you’re happy, like genuinely happy in your life, you have no time to focus on other pointless bullshit. You are busy working on yourself and building that happiness from within.

A lot of people, however attribute this happiness to money or another a person. And I’m just here to tell you the reasons why you shouldn’t attribute your happiness to these things

Money

The funny thing about money is that our moods change the moment that direct deposit hits.

We go from this

to this

Money is amazing, right? It’s the only thing that practically allows us to get anything we see a need or a want for, like clothes, make-up, the new iPhone, etc. However, does anyone remember the old adage “Money doesn’t buy you happiness”? Money can get you things to a certain point, but it can’t give you love, security or anything as abstract as the concept of happiness. You can’t even buy a personality with money or a new wife, HOW CRAZY IS THAT?

As a matter of fact, I’ve been watching this telenovela on Netflix called Sin Senos, No Hay Paraiso. Set in Pereira, Colombia, the show follows two teens and the poverty that surrounds them. Since the poverty rate in the area is so high, the teens decide to forfeit school and engage in some pretty lucrative stuff, in an act to get money, without the hard work.

Among the characters on the show, the teens’ mom explains that money isn’t everything in this world, that money isn’t meant to fix up every little issue that one has. Frankly, sometimes those problems, those deep rooted problems, can’t be remedied with insane amounts of money.

Another person

Relying on another person for your own happiness, is a definite no-no in my book. Yes, it’s nice that a person makes you happy, but they really shouldn’t be the boss of your own happiness. Like I said before, you should only be focusing on filling up your own cup of happiness. Let the other person be your overflow of happiness, not the consistency of it!

So I downloaded Tinder and with the help of one of my best friends, I was able to create a really good profile! In fact, here are some of the pictures I used:

and for my bio, I just put something short, sweet and to the point: Classy, never nasty, just a bit sassy✨.

The way that tinder works is that you have a set amount of guys in your area, you either swipe left- if you’re not interested- or swipe right, if you’re interested. On the first day, I received so many sweet messages, compliments, along with quite a few corny jokes. A good bit of the guys that I matched with (as in we both swiped right on each other), said the same line over and over: “Never nasty, huh?”

It was definitely an experience. Even though I lasted only four days on the app, I realized it wasn’t something for me. I think I’ve always known that and I just wanted to see what the app was all about, meet new people, all that jazz.

To be frank, I was not and am not looking for a relationship right now. I’m still working on myself. The fact that people actually look for relationships on tinder surprises me, because tinder isn’t built for that. It’s just built for people to meet, chat, and that’s it. This really opened my mind up to another area in the realm of dating and how easy it has become for people to meet, just by swiping right.

By the time I was hitting the fourth day, I noticed how drained I felt. Like this physical tiredness where all I ever did was just keep swiping, in hopes that I would get matched and have some sort of message sent my way. How unhealthy is that? How did I suddenly come to this conclusion?

It was then that I realized that If I was going to be physically and mentally drained from using a ‘dating’ app, why even bother using it? Why bother using or doing something if it doesn’t make me happy?

So I deleted my tinder because I realized that I could do without it and I’m going to be starting soon at a new school, where I’ll meet more cool people who share similar values and passions. Granted, I met some pretty cool people on tinder and may even stay in touch with a few, but as I’ve said before, it’s not something for me.

Before you do something, remember to ask yourself these 3 questions:

  • Are you going to be happy doing so?
  • Is it going to cause you a great deal of stress down the line?
  • Are you doing this for you or for another person?

The bottom line is: Happiness is being content with who you are. If you don’t feel happy with who you are, start by searching some ways that can bring you back to your happiest self.

Sending a ton of love and light your way,

cropped-img_2835-1.jpg

P.S follow my adventures on Instagram!

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Why Being Needy Isn’t Good

People can’t stand someone who is needy. I can’t stand a needy person. Being needed every once in a while is nice, but being needed all the time feels almost too draining. It is suffocating.

When I asked for a guy’s perspective on the matter, they said that being needy is flat out unattractive.

So here’s a scenario: say you like someone and you’re talking about them to all your friends, but you have no idea if this kid likes you or not.  You’re constantly giving them attention, without having any reinforcements showing you that this person really shares your feelings.

You are so dependent on them that you don’t realize how much you are actually hurting yourself. In short, being needy is not a good thing.

When you’re in a relationship, being too needy can lead to only one thing: the break-up.

Now this post aims to help you or someone you know, how to not be needy, what you can do instead, and how to be conscious of it in a relationship.

I’m not saying you should be so independent that you must show to everyone how un-needy you are, because where are people needed if you claim this? But what I’m saying is you have to be able to find a happy medium that isn’t too stand-off-ish or too needy, and that can be hard. So that’s where I come in.

You are dependent on a person, instead of on yourself

Being needy shows a lack of self worth. It shows that you depend on someone for your own happiness or sense of security. I have gotten so tired of hearing needy people say things like “My heart is aching for someone to love me” , “he is my world” or my favorite, “Woe is me, I am so tired of being left out in the cold with my heart broken”

Wake. The. F%^&. Up

You are a strong, man or woman. You are capable of having your own happiness, and having that same happiness stem from within yourself. You do not need to rely on someone who can “light up your world like nobody else”, light up your own world. You are in control of your own happiness.

Do you need someone to keep you warm at night? Not necessarily. Learn how to do that on your own. Learn to be alone and content with yourself. Sometimes, it is okay to focus on yourself, focus on what you need and how you can supply some of these things that you look for in a person (i.e warmth, love, cuddles, etc). Again, I am not saying that you have to be a lone wolf, but what I am saying is that you should learn to treat yourself with the same love and warmth as one would in a relationship, for the time being, until you find the right person.

Now, I’m gonna tell you a little story. As crazy as it sounds, I used to be needy.

WHAT?! ME?

Yes. you read correctly. I remember one time my freshman year in college, I sparked up a conversation with this kid and next thing I know, I’m texting him non-stop, feeling sorry for myself every time he didn’t answer me back, the whole enchilada.

But it turned out that I just liked the idea of him. I didn’t take into account the subtle social cues he was using to let me down easy.  I didn’t see or take into account how he made me feel, but instead fixated on how I was making him feel. So when I “fell for him”, I was surprised and crushed at the fact that he did not feel the same way.

Through many lessons I learned in my first year of college, I learned a lot about myself and how to be conscious of the neediness I had expressed. I am not a perfect person. I am still working on this and it has been so invigorating being able to see my worth in myself rather than on another person. Finding your worth is also a work in progress and something one should always strive for everyday.

Finding a happy medium between independent and needy

Being independent is one extreme, but being needy is another extreme.

So here is a pro and cons list of independent and needy

Pros

  • Pro of being independent: You rely on yourself and not on others to achieve your goals.
  • Pro of being needy: none

Cons

  • con of being independent:  If you’re too independent and insist that you don’t need help at all in accomplishing your goals, it makes you look bad. It makes you sound like you are so much better off without them. While it may not be what you say, it could be something that you do very often and vice versa.
  • con of being needy: what was just outlined before. If you rely on someone for your overall happiness, where does that leave you? You end up looking like an overly- obsessed girlfriend or boyfriend.

So please learn to be conscious of when you are needy with such actions as:

  • Texting/Calling bae or someone you’re ‘talking’ to more than three times a day.
  • Talking about the person you’re talking to when the other party hasn’t even asked about how your relationship is progressing.
  • Relying on them as your only source of happiness
  • Being a little impatient or jealous when you see a photo with another girl or guy who just is their friend.

Finding a happy medium in all of this could be as simple as not doing any of the behaviors I just listed.

This list could go on, but if you have anything to add on the matter, don’t hesitate to share your thoughts in the comments below!

Thanks for stopping by!

Marrying The Right Person

So not too long ago, I watched a TED talk about how you can find the person you really need to marry.

TV writer of Mad Men and United States of Tara, TEDx presents: Tracy McMillan.

She starts her TED Talk with an interesting hook, that held my attention throughout the TED Talk, then again, Tracy is a TV writer. So this lady knows a thing or two about a thing or two, based on the experiences that she has had in her life.

She starts off by talking about the common song that we have heard (during our childhood) from our friends whenever we were in the presence of someone we liked:

“Tracy and so-and-so sittin’ in a tree, K-I-S-S-I-N-G. First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes baby in a baby carriage!”

I mean I feel like all of us have heard this at some point or another. At a young age, you think that those are definitely the keys (brings in the Godfather of keys: DJ Khaled) to life. To fall in love, get married, and to have children. Unfortunately, life doesn’t always work out like that. It’s complete with its twists, turns, and not to mention, downfalls. In my eyes, that’s what makes it interesting.

Anyway, so McMillan puts up on the big screen how her life really panned out. She was married 3 times and out of the three marriages with men, she had a child with one of them. Divorced three times. Falls in love much later. Etc Etc. The one thing I found very interesting about this TEDx Talk, in particular, was how openly candid and positive McMillan was about her experiences in life. To me, it shows how far she has come since that time.  It’s like saying, “yeah it was shit, but I wouldn’t change the outcome of these events.” Amazing.

Time and time again, I always hear people say, ‘oh I regret all the time I spent with such-and-such person’ or something like ‘so-and-so has been an awful person throughout our whole relationship, I hope he catches an STI and dies’. That is no way to live. The events in our lives happen for a reason.  Turn a negative situation, into a positive one.

After she has a third divorce in 2005, she realized she had been marrying everyone in sight, except for the one person she needed to marry. Herself. After her many, many errors in her love life, she finally found the one thing that would change her life in a positive way. This idea became known as: Marrying Yourself. How??? As with any relationship you start off with anyone, you apply that same concept to yourself. You build a relationship with yourself and basically put a ring on it. You commit to yourself and realize that no one, nothing will come between the relationship you have with yourself. As with any kind of relationship, you make it work, you work at this relationship until you feel whole. Until you feel that you can take the next step in the relationship, taking vows for yourself.

McMillan then says that “the places where you have the biggest challenges in your life, become the places where you have the most to give.” She opens up about her life. Her parents weren’t around as much (I don’t want to go into too much detail, as I will post the link to the video at the end of this post) and she was put into the foster care system.

By the time she got out of the foster care system, she had one goal in mind and that was to never be left alone. A way she would accomplish said goal was to get married. She got married at 19 and was thrilled that she found a man who was successful and was a part of his family. 5 years later she leaves him. 10 years later she finds a new man and she gets married. She had a child with him and to this day she still has a great relationship with her now ex-husband. She makes a point about how in the process of learning to love yourself, you have to do be painfully honest to yourself. 8 years later, she gets married a third time. She then breaks it down further. Mind you, she didn’t have the best upbringing, so no one showed her what a healthy relationship between two people looks like or felt like. So when she got married the third time she says that it felt right. What felt right was the idea that she held about being in a relationship, being married. To her, being in a relationship with someone, it meant that she would be secure, that she wouldn’t have to be alone, because she had a companion to share it with.

This is where a lot of people are wrong. I learned not too long ago, that a relationship should be the overflow of your already full cup of tea. If you expect someone to fill your cup, i.e to be your one source of happiness, then you are placing a higher expectation on this particular person. When they leave, you’re still going to be left with you. Left with just an empty cup. Work on making yourself happy and then look for a man.

What McMillan is saying is that when you marry yourself, you’re not just going to date yourself and see where it ends up. You’re going to make sure you keep your promises. Yep, that’s right!  Vows. For richer or for poorer, you are going to love yourself from right. Where. You. Are. Think about it this way, you wouldn’t say to yourself: “when you make it big in Hollywood, then I’ll marry you”. The same thing goes for changing your appearance, you wouldn’t say to yourself: “Once you drop those 15 pounds, then I’ll love you”. NO! You become your own boyfriend/girlfriend. You respect yourself. You shouldn’t be a bitch to yourself. When you marry yourself, you walk yourself down the aisle, exactly where you are. For better or for worse. It’s so easy to love yourself in the times that you feel good about yourself. Some examples are (but are not limited to):

  • new hair cuts/ good hair days
  • Getting a job that aligns with your career
  • losing weight/ gaining muscle

That list could go on… But the worst, is the part we should be focusing on. Sometimes, in life, stuff never goes how you expect it will go. You could plan and schedule down to the exact minute and shit still wouldn’t go as well as you would think it would ( for more on this concept check out What Happens When We Act on Our Expectations? ). The worst is what we fear, but what we have to take into account is that, it is a part of life. Shit happens. Sometimes a relationship doesn’t work out. You didn’t get the dream home you hoped to get. Maybe you didn’t graduate from college. Maybe you have a falling out with your family. Maybe you spend too much of your time being angry and less of your time working through that anger. Whatever it is, Just know that this is all temporary. You agree to marry yourself at all costs.

Life doesn’t give you what you ask for, it gives you people, places, situations and things for you to develop the skills you asked for.

In sickness and in health: You need to get to a point where you can sit by your own bedside, nurse your own broken heart and realize that the only person who has you, is you, to have and to hold. To love yourself the way you want someone to love you.

When you make the decision to marry yourself, you are then able to love someone from where they are, for who they are. The same way you love yourself.

When you go out on dates, you shouldn’t be thinking about how you are coming off to the person, instead, think about how you feel in their presence. Do they make you feel good? Does a calming effect take place the moment you lay eyes on them? Be so committed to yourself, that you become more interested in how you feel about you, rather than how he/she feels about you.

Check out the video below!

The Person You Really Need to Marry

The Power of Forgiveness

Hey guys! I hope all of you are enjoying the first few days of the new year! If you’re having trouble finding ways to be motivated in your goals or have no goals for this year, check out my previous post Living Life With Arms Wide Open to see how you can get on the right track this year!

For the next couple of weeks, I am going to be doing a series called, “The Power of…”. My aims are to outline different ways in which you can incorporate certain virtues into your lives and become a better person.

So let’s get started, shall we?

Forgiveness. Where do I even start?

Forgiveness is a powerful thing. It sounds so easy to do, yet it is one of the hardest things a person has to overcome, depending on the severity of the issue. Sometimes, people go years, maybe even a lifetime without forgiving someone who has hurt them. Other times, it takes years and maybe a lifetime to forgive someone. The thing is: forgiveness not only helps you grow, but it helps bring peace within yourself.

I mean imagine having a deep seated hatred for people who have hurt you in the past. You’re mad. You’re furious, over every little thing they do and have done to you. What good are being mad and bottling up that anger?  It is not good for you, at all. You hurt yourself more, in the long run.

That’s why I don’t hate. I let go of all the people who have hurt me. When you let go of the people who have hurt you, you have room for more people in your life. Granted, if a relationship with someone close to you has drifted, due to a fall out, try your best to make amends on your end. If, after trying to make amends on your part, doesn’t work out or the person doesn’t answer you for whatever reason (phone number change, wrong email, etc), then take on the task of forgiving yourself.

As a kid, I used to get bullied. Now I know what you’re thinking, “kids just say the darndest things, they don’t mean it!”, what if I told you their words cut deeper than I could ever imagine? The same way one were to pluck away at the petals of a flower, is the same way bullies were able to pluck away at my weaknesses. I’ve been called everything in the book. It was awful. I did whatever I could: ignore it, tell them off or have my parents get involved with the school. One of the the three actually was proven effective. Thankfully, my last year in middle school, no one messed with me.

My point is, After I graduated from middle school, I was able to forgive the people that hurt me and most of all forgive myself. In the end, I went to a different high school than everyone else that year.

Don’t just forgive, to forgive. Forgive to close a chapter in the book that is your life. You don’t want to harbor any pain you have from that relationship. What will happen is it’ll pour over into all your other relationships and that’s not good either. It doesn’t allow you to heal. To grow.

Remember, the whole point of any change in your life, it starts with you.

If you’re trying to be a better person, start with yourself. Start by applying the power of forgiveness, by taking steps towards forgiving yourself and by forgiving others. If you feel that you should seek out a higher power, then do that. Personally, I seek God and I feel that when I ask for forgiveness, I could do it all in the comfort of my home or at church on my own time. When I have my time with the Lord, I don’t see a priest, but I let myself be free in God’s presence, speak from the heart, and pray at my pew.

It’s all about putting in the work and putting it all into action. The path to greatness doesn’t have to be hard. Just take it step by step and day by day.

Forgiveness is a powerful thing, Meredith. Not only to make the other person feel good, but to heal you. You need to forgive her, Meredith. Forgive her for not being Derek, for being the wrong Shepherd, just enough to remind you of what’s missing, but not enough to bring him back. That’s not her fault. You need to forgive her. You don’t have to like her, you don’t have to love her, but forgive her. So you can forgive Blake, for being in that room when a wrong decision cost you your husband. Forgive Derek for dying too soon. Forgive yourself for hating him for dying too soon. Let it go, Meredith. And forgive.”

Forgiveness. It’s the right thing to do.

Cutting Ties

I don’t know about you, but there comes a point in life where we need to cut people who have gone dormant in our lives.

Why should I even spend time thinking about people who really don’t spend a second thinking about me? If someone genuinely cared, they would reach out. I recently realized that it’s okay to cut out anyone who isn’t playing a positive role in your life or is leaving you hanging every time.

Family included. Crazy. But not uncommon.

On Christmas eve, my family and I went to go drop off gifts at a relative’s house. As we pull in, we saw the car of a family member that basically shut themselves off from the family. We walk in, lo and behold said family member was sitting at the table, eating

“Feliz Navidad” (Merry Christmas), they said.

My brother and I went to go say hi, talk with them and another family member. Before I knew it, it was time for us to leave. Through the brief conversation, here’s what was exchanged:

“Wow, did you cut your hair? looks cute.”

“Yeah, I did, thanks.”

By that point, I had to leave. So I basically told this person to not be a stranger.

But how can I tell someone to not be a stranger, if they’ve already made the decision to be one? How can someone just wake up one day and just shut themselves off from someone?

It’s surprisingly simple and unfortunately, it happens more often than not. The other day this week, I went on a LITERAL delete/unfollow/unfriend-ing spree on ALL my social media accounts. I had already made a mental list of all the people I don’t talk to, people who I have given endless chances, people who don’t deserve my time, etc. It’s not worth wasting my energy, getting mad and bent out of shape over them. I distance myself from people like this.

Distancing myself from someone is a way of saying to them “hey yeah, I dropped you, now let’s see if you care as much as I did”. Not only that, but it also shows that I’ve finally chosen myself over the person and as sad as it is, that is my choice to let them go. If the person, however, notices then it’s a good thing because then you can clear the air with them. Communication is key in every relationship.

Granted, in deleting all the people from my life, I didn’t take it as “I hate them, so let me unfollow them, because they piss me off”. I don’t hate anyone nor do I hold any grudges. What is the point in holding a grudge about something someone did months/years ago? While they’re out living their best life, you’re here, hating them and what they did to you ages ago. You are hurting yourself more than the person you’re hating. Make the choice to forgive.

Forgive them and also forgive yourself. Sometimes in forgiving them and yourself, you make the decision to cut ties or continue your relationship with the person. With some people, you shouldn’t make the rash decision of cutting someone out of your life, if you’re not in the right head space or have yet to forgive them and what they did to you, then hold off on doing so. You don’t have to say anything to them. But also keep in mind, cutting someone out of your life is a mental and emotional process.

I mean think about it, if you don’t see anything positive coming from the relationship you have with the person or you simply don’t talk anymore (because let’s face it we all get caught up in life), then cut them off. What good is having a person who won’t call you, catch up with you, in your life? You have the choice to end the friendship, relationship, whatever, and just move on. In this way, you are able to make room in your life for people who definitely see it the way you do, will give you the satisfaction of catching up with you and be a positive influence in your life.

Sometimes it hurts, but it hurting is part of the healing process and a fact of life. If you want to move forward in your life, what is holding you back? Is it the grudges that you hold against other people? If so, learn to Let. It. Go.

You deserve people in your corner, but most of all, you deserve all the good that there is in this world.

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