I decided to smile. Not just smile when I hear something funny or feel good. Just simply smile. For no reason. And I discovered that it is not easy to do all the time.

As different thoughts come into my mind and the day’s happenings unfold, I forget to smile and have to consciously decide to do so. I remind myself of a quote by Anne Lamott that “Joy is the best makeup.” With time it has become easier and the feeling of happiness returns more often.

Smile. When I catch myself and decide to smile, this second becomes instantly a happy moment. With each repetition, seconds turn into hours. And each day becomes a happier day.

Amazing how it works. Worries and fears disappear, and a happy feeling takes over. The power of a smile. It won’t fix difficult moments life brings our way, but by creating a positive attitude, it will make dealing with them easier.

So smile right now. For no reason. And let it put you in a happy frame of mind. Pass on your smile around. These are the makings of a happy day. One smile at the time.

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I smile listening to my thoughts, realizing I am happy. I have stopped searching and awaiting the perfect moment to start living. I just am.

I decided that being and doing the best I can every day is enough to be happy. Yes, I can be better and do more, but that doesn’t stop me anymore from enjoying who I am now. And this all started with listening to my thoughts. Thoughts of dissatisfaction and disappointment that I have not accomplished more. That I don’t have my own perfect family. That I don’t have more money. That I don’t have my own successful company.  These thoughts diminished many happy moments I experienced and anything that I did accomplish. How sad.

All through my life experiences, introspective thinking, getting in touch with my feelings, meditating, listening to motivational programs, and setting goals, I missed finding the way to fulfillment. It has been a long journey to arrive at the happy place. Between struggles to achieve my goals and fears of not being able to reach them, I have found peace.

I have learned to be aware of the vast internal life. Each thought is a sound inside, creating happy or sad feelings. These are the sounds of life. I choose the happy sounds.

You know the feeling when things change, our lives take a turn, and a new chapter begins.

Often it is a scary moment especially when we didn’t plan the change. Most of the time we find excitement in such places in life. We find happiness in moments like falling in love or getting married, and we find sadness at times of illness or losing a loved one.

Each experience changes us. And it changes us for life. We feel like a different person. Ecstatically happy or deeply sad. We know right then that things will never be the same. The experience has impact on everything. The way we feel. The way we think. The way we behave. And the way we look at the world.

This is just a part of  living and growing. What we learn through moments like these shapes our futures. We become stronger, more resilient, perhaps more cautious, or just simply happy about what else is ahead of us.

Where are you now? In the beginning of a new chapter, in the middle, or at the end of one? As another chapter is opening, I wonder with anticipation and excitement what it will bring into in my life.

I believe in following my heart.
Because logic alone will not lead me to full happiness.

I believe timing is everything.
And when I’m ready for something the other person may not be.

I believe that I have to love myself first.
Only then I can give unconditional love to others.

I believe in limiting beliefs.
And that we all have them whether we realize it or not. 

I believe all people come into our lives for a reason.
Knowing what that reason is makes us grow.

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Written July 4th, 2009

I woke up thinking “I can’t believe I just had this dream. Where did it come from?”

Some dreams are easy to interpret. They are related to either something I intensely thought about or something that happened. Dreams that seem to appear from “nowhere” are most surprising.

Last night I had a visit from my grandma who passed away 30 years ago. I have never dreamed about her before, but last night I had a vivid conversation with her. She was telling me about her work in a garden and how she diligently arranged everything to make it perfect. Puzzled I asked her “Grandma how old are you?” while counting in my thoughts since the last time I saw her when she was 86. (more…)

Monikan headshot 2After studying many masters and successful individuals, I have realized that the way to riches – spiritual, personal, professional and financial – is through believing in and living by the principles of unconditional acceptance:

Acceptance that life is infinitely abundant and we will not run out of opportunities. Acceptance that we create who and where we are in our lives. That we have a choice how we respond in any situation. Believing in not blaming others or circumstances for our failures. Knowing that the present moment is the only one that counts. (more…)

Remembering moments in life is a funny thing. As days pass, I think I will be able to recall everything. But I have realized that memories fade away and disappear. How surprised I was reading my journal entries written nearly 20 years ago. I didn’t remember the people, places and feelings I wrote about in great detail. How could I have forgotten when I wrote about them with such passion? (more…)