We’ve all heard that happiness is within us.
That it’s not in the things that we own, the achievements we accomplish or the relationships we have.
Happiness is our birth right. It’s our true nature.
There is nothing that we need to acquire, know or achieve to be happy. True happiness in uncaused and is not dependent on anything.
For many of us, this sentiment is not a new one. Most of us have at least an intellectual understanding that ‘happiness is an inside job’ but few of us have learnt how to embody it.
The common experience for many of us is to walk around like happiness junkies, going from one happiness hit to the next. The new job, the new iPhone, the new girlfriend, the new yoga practice, the new green smoothie recipe; they all give us a buzz, and pretty soon we’re looking for the next hit to keep us going.
And so the never-ending game of searching outside of ourselves for happiness takes speed. We’re chasing our tales and searching for happiness where it doesn’t exist. We’re like Dorothy searching the Yellow Brick Road for a way to alleviate our loneliness, when all along we are wearing the red ruby slippers to take us home.
In this case, gratitude takes us home to ourselves.
Being grateful for what is already in our lives helps us to appreciate what is already present, and puts the brakes on the never ending cycle of tail chasing. Gratitude becomes a meditation, an experience in present-moment awareness and an honouring of all that has been given to us in this life time.
Gratitude can also serve as a vehicle to support us through the difficult times. Yes, life may feel challenging and it might not be unfolding the way we planned, but there is still the feeling of sunshine on the skin, chocolate, farmer’s markets, holding hands, water in the tap and friends who bring coffee.
But when we can be grateful for simply being alive, for the gift of being an intrinsic part of creation, then gratitude acts as a window into uncaused happiness. When we’re grateful for this, then there is only happiness.
An uncaused happiness that is our birthright.
Want to find out how happy you’ll be with a daily gratitude practice? Come join the gratitude revolution!
It’s free and you can get your (virtual) hands on the 30 Days of Gratitude eCourse and the Gratitude Interview eBook.
Sign up now at www.capturinggratitude.com
Dr Lauren Tober is a Clinical Psychologist, Life Coach and Yoga Teacher based in Byron Bay, Australia. With a passion for health, healing and happiness, Lauren integrates the best of western psychology with ancient yogic wisdom, both on and off the mat.
Lauren is the founder of Capturing Gratitude, a worldwide photographic happiness project, and A Daily Dose of Bliss, a highly acclaimed online yoga course for emotion regulation and bliss.
Lauren’s work has been featured in the Huffington Post, Collective, Australian Yoga Journal, the ABC, Well Being, Australian Yoga Life, Elephant Journal and more.
Lauren believes that happiness is our true nature, and that mindfulness, compassion, gratitude, creativity and community help us to cultivate happiness in our lives on an everyday basis.
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