Lots of people are walking around with some pretty antiquated notions about happiness. Some of us believe we’ll be happy as soon as we achieve success in our careers. Others conflate happiness with achieving a particular status, like getting married or having a baby. And many others still believe that happiness is something that only money can buy. But here’s the irony: Searching for happiness in external conditions actually blocks us from receiving the love, fulfillment and abundance we’re really seeking.
Here’s why searching for happiness might be making you deeply unhappy. And a proven, inside-out approach to happiness that will instantly lift your mood in any circumstance or situation.
The “outside-in” approach to searching for happiness can leave us perpetually unhappy.
Most of us were conditioned to take what I call an “outside-in” approach to happiness. If this approach were written as a formula, it would look something like this: “When I achieve X, then I will feel Y.” And of course, each of us solves for Y according to our own value systems. Some of us believe the happiness we seek will come to us when we finally find the right man. Others believe happiness lies on the other side of becoming a parent or landing that big promotion. Some believe their search for happiness will be over when they reach their ideal body weight or clothing size. Still, others equate it to moving into the house of their dreams.
To some extent, all of us have bought into this “inside-out” mindset. We honestly believe that attaining some external condition or object will bring us the internal fulfillment we seek.
But there is a huge downside to searching for happiness in possessions, people, or achievements. For one, it sets us on a never-ending quest for the next achievement and the next one after that. The happiness we seek is like a mirage in the desert. We keep striving toward it but never reach the promised land.
Chasing happiness is like trying to track down an ever-moving target.
And here’s the second downside of taking an outside-in approach when searching for happiness: We often exhaust ourselves in the process. And this means that even when we achieve the outer goal, our pleasure is short-lived because we’re burned out from the search.
Adopting an “inside-out” approach provides freedom to both these “searching for happiness” traps.
The “inside-out approach to happiness is the key to manifesting what you really desire.
Behind every single thing we desire – big or small, material or intangible, superficial or deep – is a longing to experience a certain feeling. Think about the specific conditions you believe would forever end your search for happiness. It might be to meet your soulmate, transform your body, experience more success in your career, or make more money.
The underlying reason you want these things is that you believe having them will make you feel a certain way. But as we’ve explored, chasing possessions for the happiness we hope they’ll bring leaves us empty and unfulfilled. To take a more sustainable, inside-out approach, you need only ask yourself one question: Why do I want this?
If you equate happiness with having more money, for example, it’s not because you like the looks of the paper. You want it because you are longing to experience a deep, essential feeling you believe the money will bring. It might be a feeling of worthiness, of empowerment, of self-love, of freedom… And this feeling is the internal essence of your desire.
By connecting with the internal essence of your desire, you will end your search for happiness for good.
No matter what you want to create in the outer world, what you are really seeking is the feeling of this internal “essence.” And learning how to vibrate in energetic resonance with the essence of what you want is the secret to manifesting it.
Here are 3 steps for vibrating in harmony with the happiness you desire:
- Once you’ve identified what you believe will make you happy, begin to ask yourself, “Why?” In other words, how do you think you’ll feel when your search for happiness is complete? In what ways do you believe that manifesting your desire will change you as a person?
- Next, Imagine that your search for happiness is now complete. Now allow yourself to connect to the bottom-line feeling or energy that you believe you’ll feel. Is it joy? Abundance? Freedom? Love? This is the energy you’ve truly been reaching for in your search for happiness, so connect it energetically and emotionally. Feel its essence in your heart. Feel it in your belly (your power center). Allow the vibration of this energy to permeate your entire body and radiate out through every cell of your being.
- And finally, allow this new energetic set point to guide your thoughts and actions. Move through your life while remaining connected to this energy, allowing it to guide you in new ways.
Remember that the inner satisfaction you’re really seeking doesn’t necessarily come about as a result of external circumstances. The late, great comedian George Carlin expressed this point beautifully. “Trying to be happy by accumulating possessions is like trying to satisfy hunger by taping sandwiches all over your body,” he said.
By taking an inside-out approach, you can connect directly with the energy that is driving your search for happiness. This is not just the secret to feeling happier, but, in time, to manifesting all that you desire.
Christy Whitman is an energy healer, Master Certified Law of Attraction Coach, and the New York Times bestselling author of The Art of Having It All: A Woman’s Guide to Unlimited Abundance. Her forthcoming book The Desire Factor: How to Embrace Your Materialistic Nature to Reclaim Your Full Spiritual Power is available for pre-order now at www.thedesirefactor.com. She communicates with, and for, The Quantum Council, a collection of non-physical ascended masters who desire to help humanity understand that we are divinely designed for well-being, abundance, success, and loving relationships. You can take the first step in alignment and creating your desires by a free 30-day program called Watch Your Words by going here: www.watchyourwords.com.