For many moons I was in full on party mode; pity party mode, that is. As is usually the case with these sorts of fiestas, there was only room at the table for one, and often times even that was too crowded. I was sick of following the rules, utterly bored with my job, socially drained, and feeling disenchanted with New York in general (side note: if you are someone who hearts NY, as I do, you will never truly tire of its myriad splendors; however, I spent my entire life – 26 years by the time I left – either living in, or near the City, and knew there was more to the world than the ‘Center of the Universe’). I never felt good enough, lord knows who for, and although I knew I wanted to leave, I didn’t know how I’d ever be able to.
Then, in April of 2011, the greatest thing that could’ve happened to me at the time happened; I got my heart broken by the boy of my dreams. A tale as old as time, it took someone else letting go of me to realize that I, too, needed to let go of myself. Of course at first I didn’t feel so liberated. I kicked, and I screamed, and I practically blew my poor mothers house down with my self loathing. But not too long after, I decided things needed to change. And I decided that now was the time I was going to start working towards living my dream, not somebody else’s. I was ready, and nothing could stop me.
It’s amazing how something so simple as a slight tweak in your attitude can change your entire world. Literally everything changed for me, once I changed my perspective, and I know a million people have written about this, but it’s only because it’s true! Nothing about my day to day was any different; my job and friends were the same, the City – although always evolving – still had the same vibe and mentality, and the rules sure as hell weren’t going anywhere. What did change, though, was the way I saw it all. I smiled more; learned to say no; learned to say yes; judged less, and encouraged more; started documenting daily all that I was grateful for. Fake it till you make it was my initial motto of choice, and it wasn’t long before I was swinging in the sunshine, its beautiful rays allowing me to see the forest through the trees.
Abraham Lincoln was famously quoted as saying, “Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.” I always knew he was a smart man! So today, I want you to choose to be happy; choose to see your world from an angle of light and opportunity. Even if you think you can’t change your situation, you can change how you see it, and in turn, how you feel about it. It won’t ever be an easy process, and nobody has 365 days of total happiness. However, if you don’t believe you can do or change something, you never will.
Change attitude > choose happiness > change life.