With an understanding of projection let us now explore applications of this new found awareness. Since everything is purely subjective and within us this means that literally we are the only ones who decide how we feel in every moment. This means that all love, happiness, fulfillment, contentment, and satisfaction in life is purely up to us and only us. There is no thing or person who can actually make us happy, feel loved, or right. It is only our own choice. Out of inspiration provided from recent discussions with friends, the following may be useful guidance pertaining to remembering how to love ourselves and be honest with ourselves regarding how we feel in order to realize more happiness in our lives.
Happiness is Our Choice
I’d like to reiterate the importance of the fact that it is only us that choose to be happy and therefore we mustn’t deny ourselves joy for the sake of others. So often we think that it is our job to make others happy and that it is even possible to make someone else happy in the first place. This however, is not actually true, no one can ‘make’ us happy, it is purely our own choice and so it is really exhausting to believe that it is possible, since essentially we’re literally trying to do the impossible. We only have to take care of ourselves, everything else is foolish and a huge waste of energy. This may seem selfish at first but with some thought it’ll soon be realized otherwise. Let me explain why.
Martyrdom and Denying Ourselves
If we decide that we should be a martyr and should sacrifice our happiness for others’ sake we are not doing anyone any favors and it is actually quite rude and insulting since in reality we’re subconsciously saying, I’m spending time with you, serving you, or staying with you, because I feel pity, obligation, or otherwise doing it strictly for you and not because I actually want to but out of sacrifice. Or perhaps we want to but just not right now. Well this obviously is a bummer because no one likes to feel that someone genuinely doesn’t want to serve them or be around them and it is actually far more hurtful to do so than to have just been honest and perhaps said no or otherwise avoided it. Besides, we can’t actually make someone else happy so thinking that our actions actually make them happy is essentially selfish, egotistical and only feeding delusion. As we honor ourselves we give permission for others do to the same which is actually the greatest expression of love because it inspires by example.
Nevertheless, when we aren’t honoring our own desires and taking care of ourselves first, we totally feel drained and exhausted which is only negative for us and also negative for anyone else we’re interacting with because we’re not even giving them our true happy, centered self. Again, this is detrimental for everyone involved. Analogously, think of how on an airplane they tell you in the case of losing cabin pressure to apply your own oxygen mask first before ever helping others. This is a great example because if you don’t save yourself first then you literally can’t help anyone because you’re already unconscious. Well in the same way we must care for our needs first and love ourselves before ever trying to share with others. After all if we’re drained and depleted what is there to share anyway.
Christ mentioned this concept about giving a gift without one’s honest intention and heart involved and how it only turns one’s gift to stone. The teaching is that it is one’s intention that is the utmost importance which means an absence of the energies of martyrdom or sacrifice. Service should only be offered if absolutely purely desired and naturally arising out of genuine joy to do so, never out of obligation. Likewise, love should never be feigned for the sake of the other because it is only hurting oneself and disrespecting the other. It is much better to be honest and seem selfish than to be dishonest with ourselves for the sake of appearances. I hope it’s becoming obvious that doing things that we really don’t want to do doesn’t benefit anyone, and if not perhaps it soon will be. So let us take the other perspective.
Respecting Our Own Path
On the other hand, if we choose to only follow our own happiness and only do what makes us happy in every moment it is the most incredibly rewarding feeling there is. First of all, our own inner lives become totally transformed because we no longer feel like we’re denying ourselves our joy that we so desire. We accept that we are totally in control of our lives and our own journey, which is how it should be for it is the truth. So we immediately feel better because we’re empowered and centered and realize that it is only us that can control our happiness and we don’t have to answer to anyone else. No one else can do it for us, it cannot be repeated enough that no thing and no person can actually ‘make’ us happy, it is purely a choice within us. So as we learn/remember to choose to be happy and love ourselves we start behaving according to what we truly want. This doesn’t mean we become totally reckless with this new found independence because we will quickly learn that the consequences of behaving in such a way certainly doesn’t bring us happiness due to their negative nature. So it’s more so about shifting our perspective and being honest with ourselves and honoring our heart, perhaps for the first time.
Learning to Love Work
Let’s take our occupation for example, if we go to work with the attitude of ‘yes, I want to be here, I want to serve others, and I enjoy being here because it provides me with money and the ability to do other things I love and I’m grateful for it’ and also perhaps we have friends at work or really enjoy what we do, it only makes everything better for us. Anything positive we can think of we must hold on to and only focus on because this will just make us more happy to be there and fill us with gratitude which makes work enjoyable. As we’re happy at work it no longer becomes something we dread and we’re not drained by it because we don’t hold all the negative energy regarding it such as ‘I wish I wasn’t here right now…’ Well, this is a silly thing to think because the fact is, we are there and so what’s the point of complaining and wishing we weren’t. Complaining is like trying to swim upstream, it doesn’t get us anywhere, instead if we just relax and go with the flow suddenly it’s effortless. It’s the same with life and work, if we shift into a perspective of optimism and positivity it becomes incredibly enjoyable and effortless which is better for us and all those we interact with. Likewise, this enjoyment of work is readily noticeable by our boss(es) and co-workers and is the attitude that always leads to promotion, raises, or otherwise positive recognitions. There is plenty more that could be said about making work extremely positive but lets move on.
Creating the Ideal Relationship
As far as relationships go, we choose to be with that person because we truly enjoy spending time with them. By respecting our self-love first we always remember to have proper boundaries and so only spend time and share our love with the person when we truly want to, otherwise as we said before, it’s not benefiting anyone. There is absolutely nothing wrong with being honest and saying, “I would love to spend time with you, but I really want to just relax and have some me time, or go do such and such” or however you want to word it. The point is we’re respecting ours and the other’s feelings and being totally honest. This will naturally open the door of honesty and safe expression of emotions which allows for a truly awesome relationship. The ideal relationship is two people who honor themselves fully first, and then out of their own inner satisfaction happily want to share their time and energy with the other person because they both genuinely want to.
It cannot be pointed to enough how important it is to honor ourselves first and foremost and always respect our feelings. We must only follow our bliss, not someone else’s, not our parents, friends, teachers, or culture/society. This is our life and we have have to respect and love ourselves enough to realize that we are the only one’s with true power over our happiness and love. When we do this we are honest with ourselves and so we can then be honest with those we love. This honesty is the foundation of all wonderful relationships, and the happiness that results is the ideal. As both people respect that their happiness only depends on themselves there are no expectations placed on the other person which allows for a healthy feeling of freedom and true connection. All expectations lead to disappointment and struggle and it is important to always monitor ourselves and our relationship to make sure expectations are not arising and causing unnecessary pressures and stress. Once we’re centered within ourselves we are then sharing our life because we truly want to and we’re absolutely energized, happy, and completely available to share our love with any other. This naturally brings feelings of companionship and friendship and the true joy of love. True lovingness is effortless, empowering, and completely enjoyable as it is in alignment with what we truly want at all times and is therefore going with the flow of life.
The Power of Honesty
A great way to focus on this and spark reconnection within a relationship is once centered and honest, do activities that both people genuinely want to do. This means with complete honesty both people are absolutely committed to whatever it is and thus can enjoy the experience fully with the other person. This enjoyment of our favorite activities with our loved one will remind us of why we love and appreciate them so much and will foster happiness and deeper bonding. As we become better at this it becomes effortless and the couple is capable of recognizing each other’s vibes and can learn to respect each other’s energy and in so doing be able to provide the most loving companionship. With practice one will learn how to best respond to the other and see that sometimes the most loving thing is to do nothing at all, be silent, or otherwise give space to the other person. This underlying sense of freedom allows a feeling of mutual respect and the love only becomes stronger because of the mutual understanding free of expectations/obligations.
No one likes feeling controlled, smothered, obligated, or ‘owned’. We should only ever do what we truly want. It is not up to us to worry about how others feel, that is purely their choice and as we recently discussed, nothing external is personal. All we have to do is look after ourselves, honor and respect ourselves, be honest, and follow what makes us happy. As we do so we naturally extend happiness and love to those around us by truly being it. What else is the point of life if not to play and be happy and full of joy. If we find that the other person cannot respect us and our path fully then we simply realize perhaps we need to look for someone else who does understand us and is aligned more appropriately with our desires and goals. But again, the point even then will remain the same, it is not that someone else is ‘making’ us happy it is simply that we are happy within ourselves and the other person is able to have a mutual understanding of this as well as the ability to properly communicate and share love and happiness in the same way. Happiness and love are totally within us, and are the result of our inner choice and perception, they don’t come from anything external.
I’ll leave it at this for now, perhaps reread this a couple times or whenever you feel like it and really start to implement it, believe in it and it’ll reveal itself to you. It may surprisingly be difficult to love ourself and respect our feelings at first but we have to keep trying and eventually it will become completely self-rewarding and make us want to continue to do it. We may even notice drastic changes right away as we focus within ourself and then get better at paying attention to how we really feel and become more efficient at expressing ourselves. Speak up, love yourself, respect yourself, honor your feelings, so long as we’re completely honest there is nothing to fear. If others get hurt by our honesty it is not our concern, again, this is not selfish, it’s just that being hurt is purely their choice and has nothing to do with us. All we have to do is be honest, be honest, be honest… It’s really that simple, be honest with ourselves and respect when we don’t feel right, are ‘off’, or are unhappy. Our natural state is happiness and peace of mind so if we’re not feeling that now, then let us remember the joy and love that we deserve and were meant to have.
Peace and Love always-