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Been There, Done That

Apr 11, 2008
Been there, done that - and got the tee-shirt? How many tee shirts are sitting in your wardrobe - tee-shirts that you thought would make you feel fulfilled, complete, excited, happy? Tee-shirts that you thought would give you some direction in life, that would make your life make sense, give your life meaning? How often when we have reached out for something to fill the gap have we been disappointed only to find that although it was great at the time it still wasn't IT?

We live in a materialistic society in which we are taught from a very early age that it is what we have that makes us who we are. Achieve; we are told and you will be happy. Get these things in life, have these experiences, do these things and you will have a happy, fulfilled life. I can remember the day I realised that this wasn't true. Not a deliberate lie, my parents had totally believed this idea and so had innocently passed it on to us, their children. But all the same it wasn't the truth.

I was about 27 years old, I had achieved all that I had set out to do - I had everything that I had thought would make me feel happy and content. I had a beautiful old English thatched cottage with the roses growing over the door. I had a great job, lots of money, three holidays a year, my own hang-glider to take off to the hills whenever I wanted to experience that glorious freedom of flight, I was married to someone whom everybody thought was perfect for me. In essence I had everything I thought I wanted.

One day I drove my brand new car up to the hill above the cottage and looked out over the Vale. Now this is a place of great beauty, one of the most lovely places in all of Wiltshire. The sun was shining, the air was clear as crystal, the larks were singing and I was so unhappy it felt like I was grieving. I had come to the realisation that everything I had worked for, dreamt about and created in my life was empty. All these things did not make me happy. Something very big was missing.

Now I am not saying in any way that having material possessions is a bad thing. Not in any way - please hear this. However what I have come to realise in the past fifteen years or so is that if I am going to look to these outer things to fulfil me, to make me truly and lastingly happy then I have a long wait. I have found that the only place I can look for my happiness is within myself. The only person responsible for my happiness is myself. Not my family, not my partner, not my friends, not my job, not my possessions - myself. Only once I found contentment within me have I then been able to enjoy the outer things in life.

So how do we do that, how to we get to the place in our lives where we can truly say we are content? The first step is to see how we define ourselves and start the process towards making a conscious change in our attitude to who we are and how we want to be.

We are taught from an early age that it is what we achieve that will make us happy and, in our innocence, we believe this fallacy we are given and go through life trying to prove its truth to ourselves and others around us. In truth it is only when we have found contentment inside of ourselves that we can enjoy the outer things in life.

Through my own process I came to realise that I can have beautiful things around me as long as they do not define 'Who I am'. I can live in the beautiful sunny south of Spain as long as it is not 'Who I am'. I often take a look at what I have around me and ask myself; can I be just as happy if I did not have this or that? It is a good question to ask every now and again - it shows you where you are and how much importance you give to things.

Once you see that you are not any of these things, that they do not define who you are - and it is a process you work through to get to that point, one that starts the inner journey, the inner exploration - you become infused with an amazing freedom. No longer are you tied to the 'having' in life - you are set free to the 'being' in life. You start to live in the present moment, enjoying each day for what it holds rather than wishing it were something else.

It is like life gets back on track and when we are on track we experience that life flows - things happen that support our goals in many ways that we would not have imagined. Those goals that seemed so far off come closer to reality - we actually start creating them. Life becomes exciting and once again we regain our childlike enthusiasm for living.

It is a big step to take that close look at life, to be honest enough with oneself to admit that what we thought served us, no longer does. To change direction when we thought we had our life sussed out is a scary proposition - it feels unsafe, like challenging our only existence. We also wonder how our partner and people we love will react to a change - they have a vested interest in us as we are - will they still love us if we change? All these feelings are valid but ask yourself one simple question - do I want to go through life feeling that something is missing - operating on half power? In this way you only share half of your potential with those you love - would it not be better to share the total you - full power, all rockets blasting?

More and more people are turning to Life Coaches and Spiritual Advisors to help them through major life changes and step into their personal power. Life is an incredible gift -I encourage you to live it fully, joyfully, excitedly and with great love. In this way you can fully enjoy all those tee-shirts...
About the Author
Jessica works internationally as a Life Fulfilment Coach empowering people to create the life they choose and gain fulfilment in every area of life. If you would like to arrange a time for her to call you for a free introductory session please email Tel +34 958 639 593 or jessica@jessicamcgregorjohnson.com. For more information visit her website by clicking this link
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