Counseling 101: Amazing Things You Can Achieve Due To Real Happiness

“Are you happy?”

That is a question that I had been getting all my life from my parents, my relatives, and sometimes even my friends.

I knew the reason behind it. You see, my mom and dad often called me a blessing in disguise because I was conceived when they were dating. However, they were not in love with each other, so they decided to co-parent instead of marrying each other out of responsibility. It was a bizarre setup even back in the 90s, so the people around me often felt the need to tiptoe or ask about my feelings to ensure that they were not overstepping any boundaries.

Most people seemed not to realize that my upbringing was different from that of a child whose parents went through a divorce. I grew up knowing that I had a mom and dad, but they were not together. I had a room in both their houses and never felt alienated in any way. If I had a school recital, both would be there, and they would be I supportive as any other parents would. I had always been aware that they were not meant to be, so I never felt any resentment towards either of them for not trying to make their relationship work. So, to answer the question, “Yes, I am happy.”

What Real Happiness Lets You Do

Of course, I am sensitive to the fact that I was technically an anomaly, considering I had many schoolmates with the same family setup who hated their parents for it. They would do everything to make sure that their parents would get together and hopefully reunite with each other to the extent that they would get themselves in trouble. Sometimes, it worked, but most of the time, it did not.

I honestly felt sad for those kids because they did not know what real happiness meant. It can open you up to a lot of things that bitter, jealous, or self-centered people might never experience, such as:

Have An Excellent Karma

Happy individuals are contented with their own lives, so there is no room for revenge or negative feelings in their hearts. The result is that they don’t feel the need to hog all their blessings. Everything they do is for the benefit of others.

I have proven it one too many times whenever I came across people who questioned my decision to volunteer at homeless shelters, build houses for low-income families, or donate clothes to orphanages. I would not always have free time, yes. I could not splurge like the others, yes. But I was often drowned in more blessings than they ever got, thanks to my good karma.

Become Lovable To Everyone

If you have not noticed it yet, many adults in the neighborhood tend to be indifferent to teenagers. After all, they have a terrible reputation of being rebels and not caring about manners. However, since I was always happy, I never got intimidated by them. Instead, I would even wave, say hi, or strike a quick conversation with any neighbor I would see on the street.

Soon enough, I became the most loved teenager in the neighborhood. I only learned about it when one of my schoolmates came up to me and told me to quit greeting the elders because her mother wanted her to do the same. All I said was, “Mommas know best, don’t they?”

Find Success In Life

Whenever I talk about finding success because I am happy, some cynical people argue that they know vile folks who have amassed more money than they can ever spend. I would reply, “Yes, but I am not talking about the financial aspect alone. Being successful means you find success in all facets of your life – be it career, love, and other respects.” Then, the conversation would end there because the cynics would leave, unable to come up with another snarky remark.

This is the reality that stumps most people. They always make the word “success” synonymous with “financial wealth” when there are more invaluable treasures in the world. In my case, for instance, I had two sets of families caring for me. They made it known from the start I would have a home with them forever. Then, since my happiness improved my confidence, I rose to the ranks of the corporate world quickly, which made my career successful, too. Having both treasures tends to be impossible when you’re sullen or constantly think about money.

Final Thoughts

There are more amazing things that a person can achieve in life as long as you are happy. Happiness means accepting everyone and everything on a positive note, after all.

I know that being happy does not always come naturally to everyone. That’s especially true for teenagers and young adults who blame their parents for all their issues. However, when you feel ready, find forgiveness in your heart and move on. That’s the start to experiencing real happiness.

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Why You Should Never Rule Out Counseling To Be Happy

I will never be proud to say it, but I used to be a firm believer in stigmas. To be specific, since I grew up in a household where everyone believed in white supremacy, I was afraid to be around people of other ethnicities. I could not take the school bus because of that when I was younger. It did not help that my parents insisted that I would only be educated with other white kids; otherwise, they would stop all their donations to the school.

Back in the day, I also believed my grandparents went they said that gay people were sinful. I heard it so often that I tried my best not to be associated with any of them. It was hard to do that even when I studied in an all-girls school, but I somehow did it.

Then, the most prominent stigma that my family taught me believed that there was no such thing as a mental illness. They told me that the people who claim to have such a disorder were merely looking for attention. They were furious at psychiatrists, psychologists, and counselors for riding the mental health wagon and pushing others to believe those posers.

When I Realized How Awful Stigmas Were

As you may have realized at this point, holding on to such stigmas turned me into a social pariah. No kid at school wanted to play with me in fear of being ridiculed by my family. 

Their parents were also mad about the things that my family believed in, specifically since they involved racial discrimination, gender inequality, and mental health issues. Because of that, I felt sad for many years.

It became evident to me how awful stigmas were when I saw one of my Nigerian schoolmates get picked on in the playground because of her skin color. For the record, I had never done that. I had only stayed away from people of color, but I had never bullied anyone. Seeing someone experience that even when I knew that their only crime was joining the rest of the students outside during recess was upsetting.

I did not know what got to me, but I came up to my schoolmate to comfort her. I thought she would accept me warmly, but she looked at me with sharp eyes and sad, “Are you here to rub more salt in my wound, Miss KKK?”

That stung. My family had never been involved in that terrorist group. However, I could see why people would think that way, considering they were against me studying with people of other colors. I knew that my parents would get mad at me in that instant, but I went against their rules and sat next to my Nigerian schoolmate. I tried to console her even if she did not want to because it felt like the right thing to do.

From then on, I began to question my family’s stereotypical beliefs. Although I was still slightly apprehensive initially, I introduced myself to kids of all races at school. They did not want to talk to me at first, but Bella – my new Nigerian friend – helped me win them over. And when I got my parents to let me attend a co-ed high school, I also befriended some members of the LGBT community, who all proved that there’s nothing wrong about living their truth.

But the last stigma that I managed to debunk revolved around mental health. You see, my closest cousin died in a tragic car accident when I was away in college. She was only 17 years old – full of dreams and hopes. No matter how much my family said that the culprit was already paying for his sins behind bars, I could not get over my grief. After two months, I decided to ask my parents to let me seek counseling.

Why ask for permission, you might ask? That’s because counseling was not free, like befriending people of all genders and colors. I needed my parents to get on board with the idea.

Getting Counseling

Of course, mom and dad said no initially. In their minds, I was insinuating that I was crazy or something. I got so frustrated that I yelled, “If you keep up this nonsense, you should just let me die like my cousin!”

The horror on my parents’ faces at that moment was unforgettable. But I also saw in their eyes that they were willing to give mental help a chance for my sake. The only thing they asked was for either or both of them to be present during the sessions to ensure that I would never be in harm’s way.

I wanted to protest, but that must be a blessing in disguise. My parents held their chins up so high during the first consultation. However, the more sessions we attended, the more they lowered their chins. It signified that they no longer thought counseling was a waste of time. That’s especially true when they realized that my happiness returned. Soon enough, they were encouraging our other relatives to try counseling, too.

Final Thoughts

My family does not consist of white supremacists anymore. That tradition died with my grandparents, and none of the remaining adults wanted any part of it. More importantly, they have grown to accept everyone – all thanks to counseling.

The Importance Of Surroundings

 

 

 

Look around your surroundings right now and what is the first feeling that comes to your mind? If relaxation, happiness, or satisfaction is not some of the words, then there is an issue with your environment that could be subtly affecting your emotional health. It is astounding just how big of a factor that our environment can play on our health indirectly.

“When we look at our environment, we take it all in visually,” Alicia Clark  Psy.D., MS, PLLC says. “If we’re already dealing with a lot in our mind and now we’re looking at a lot [clutter] in our home or office space, it can make us feel stuck and bogged down.”

A clean room is followed in kind with a fresh mind. A clean mind is not one that is without a trace of perversion but one that lacks distracting thoughts such as, “I should clean up” when you should be spent focusing on ways to improve you. Curious if your surroundings is up to par?  Then read on.…