The Three Grand Essentials To Happiness

essentials to happiness

Happiness is a state of mind; a state which can shift from pure contentment to complete dissatisfaction in any given moment. This change in perspective can be triggered by a number of outside circumstances seemingly out of our control; unexpected news, the loss of something dear, an ill-mannered interaction with a stranger…

At times our discomfort is prolonged and happiness can feel like a distant memory. I remember the overwhelming feeling of complete sorrow in the long months that followed my Dad’s death. I was a sinking ship. Afraid of marring others with my grief, I’d hide my devastation beneath a brave face, but on the inside I was an empty vessel lost at sea. If I knew then what I know now, I would advise my nineteen-year-old self to honour her feelings; to be unafraid of reaching out and asking for help.

If you are feeling bereft, try not to stuff down your emotions. Be kind to yourself and trust that this feeling will pass. It may not go away entirely, but as sure as the tides ebb and flow, so will your state of happiness. Nothing in life is constant. As rocky as the oceans may seem, the tides will settle in time. So don’t lose heart. It’s not your job to control the weather – life is unpredictable. But we can learn to navigate the storms, we can learn to stay afloat instead of drowning.

We can begin with the three essentials to happiness.

Something to do:

This could be as simple as petting your dog; making a start on a long neglected project or planting some vegetables to harvest in winter. Participating in life brings us back to the only moment we have – NOW. It is now that we are free from the binds of the past and worries about the future. For me, writing, walking in nature, and belly laughing with loved ones always brings me back to a state of gratitude for the moment I’m in.

Something to love:

At our core, we are pure, unbounded love. Therefore, not to love is a slow death to the soul. Yet many of us forget that we cannot give away what we don’t have. Love begins first with oneself. Not in a conceited self-righteous way, but in a way that is non-judgemental and self-accepting. When we truly love ourselves, we are able love others unconditionally. Make a promise each day to look in the mirror and say with deep compassion: “I love you.” Watch how that love flows outward to others.

Something to hope for:

Studies have shown that those who practice optimism and gratitude live longer, healthier lives. Hopeful individuals repeatedly show reduced levels of stress, anxiety and depression. Hope instills a sense of faith that everything will work out for our highest good. You don’t have to be religious to have faith in a higher power. You can have faith in yourself; faith in a loving Universe, faith in others, faith in a non-denominational Divine guidance. In short, faith and hope free us from the shackles of limiting beliefs, bringing a sense of peace to even the darkest of days.

Today, take the time to do something you love. Reflect and give thanks for this moment. Trust that everything is precisely as it is meant to be, and keep the faith.

In love & light,

Hayley xx

Enjoy Life

There is no harm in surrounding ourselves with comfort and beauty, so long as we enjoy them… The antique chest of drawers you saw which you simply adore; the sleek new set of wheels you’re itching to drive one day; that Hawaiin holiday of a lifetime; a house in the country; a cute wee puppy – all of life’s pleasure’s are there to be enjoyed (so long as we can afford them and are causing no harm to others!) 

Life was never meant to be dull or boring, nor must we go without in order to live virtuously. The problem arises when we attach our happiness and self-worth to what we have, rather than to who we are at our core. 

True happiness cannot be bought nor can it ever be taken away. No-one, and no thing can deny us of our innate peace. They may dull, stimulate, threaten or enhance the love and joy that already exists within, but that love and joy is infinitely ours and we have the power to sustain it, regardless of our circumstances. 

Today, enjoy life’s pleasures. Remember that what you focus on expands. Awaken to the abundance you already possess.

In love & light,

Hayley xx


Soulful Sunday #32: In Difficult Times

difficult times

Welcome to my thirty-second instalment of ‘Soulful Sundays’. A weekly share where I post a roundup of soulful reflections, each including recipes, songs, quotes, blogs I have read and/or any other inspirational discoveries to sooth the soul.

For me, Sunday’s have become a day of quiet contemplation and simple pleasures. A time to reflect on the week gone by and to consider my hopes and dreams for the week ahead.

My hope is to extend some love outward and to share some simple pleasures with anyone who cares to receive them.

Soul Reflections

In times of difficulty, we may wonder; ‘Why me? What have I done to deserve this?’ We have been conditioned to believe in a God who judges and condemns; the man upstairs who watches over our every move, waiting for the moment we step out of line so He can send His Angels of Punishment down to teach us a lesson or two! Is it any wonder, then, that when the shit hits the fan, we immediately blame ourselves?

The truth is, we live in a loving Universe who knows no difference between good and evil. There are no discrimination’s or favouritism’s when deciding between luck and adversity. Circumstances befall us, not to reward or punish ‘good and bad’ behaviour; but to strengthen us.

We are each strengthened at various stages in our lives. Without life’s contrasts, life would remain static. Life’s joys teach us peace, love and appreciation. Life’s adversities teach us resilience; acceptance and forgiveness. In times of difficulty, it pays to keep faith. Know that life loves you and all is well.

Soul Strolls

I am currently house sitting for friends, who I used to live with before they welcomed their beautiful new arrival; baby Yvey. I have missed my daily walks to the local park since moving away. So sure enough, as soon as I woke I indulged in one of my favourite little soul strolls. I spotted this vibrant Lavender soaking up the early morning sunrise, and smiled. Isn’t nature one of life’s true treasures?

Soul Food

I recently stayed with a good friend of mine who came to my rescue when I needed a place to stay. It was the perfect relief needed for rest and recovery. We woke most mornings to yoga followed by a delicious and nutritious smoothie. I have shared my smoothie recipes before, but today I’d like to re-share my Choco Berry Smoothie recipe in honour of my good friend Sal. This was a winner for her! She loved it, and I hope you love it too!

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Soul Music

Since today’s post is about resilience in the face of adversity, I’d like to share James Arthur’s version of Stronger; a reminder that what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger. James Arthur has released two albums since winning the UK X Factor in 2012. If you have yet to hear his music, check him out! His voice is raw and emotive. A true gift.


Soul Sisters

I’d love to share Di’s post What Is Love, Mummy? I found it beautifully vulnerable and one we can all relate to. Head over to Di’s blog, Matters For The Heart to discover more heart warming reads like this one.  I know Di will welcome you with open arms.

Wishing you all strength and peace on the blustery Melbourne Sunday!

 

In love & light,

Hayley xx

Eternal Bond

never truly lost

Forever Young you shall be. Forever in our hearts you shall remain. I wrote this song for you a few years ago and my good friends Samuel Jones, Ben Jones, and Christopher Roach breathed eternal life into it… And for that I am forever grateful.

Happy 60th birthday Dad xx

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So short lived were my chocolate raisin days
The only thing I have now are the memories of your ways
No more bear hugs, no more Match Box cars today
I’m holding on tight cause this doesn’t feel right
Don’t let this slip away
 
Cause I will never forget you
Your with me in everything I do
My smiles a reflection of you
I live my life through you because it’s all I can do
Your my parachute
 
Your brief time here, it was rocky it was rough
Never said you were giving up, my gentle giant was too tough
No need for fast cars, brief cases or expensive suits
Your love was just enough and your love was all for us
Don’t let this slip away
 
Your descent upon this material world
It was oh so brief, I was left in disbelief
I had to stop being Daddy’s girl
Your courage was reborn deep in my heart
The realisation that from you I shall never part
I’m letting go because I know I must grow
But you’ll always remain forever young
 
Cause I will never forget you
Your with me in everything I do
My smiles a reflection of you
I live my life through you because it’s all I can do
Your my parachute
 
My king of hearts has flown
But I’m willing to take the thrown
To your legacy I live
And I’ll give as you’d give
 
My parachute. My strength. My breath, my parachute. The reason I’m living so free…
 

Soulful Sunday #29: Happy Fathers Day

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Dad greeting me into the world xx

Welcome to my twenty-ninth instalment of ‘Soulful Sundays’. A weekly share where I post a roundup of soulful reflections, each including recipes, songs, quotes, blogs I have read and/or any other inspirational discoveries to sooth the soul.

For me, Sunday’s have become a day of quiet contemplation and simple pleasures. A time to reflect on the week gone by and to consider my hopes and dreams for the week ahead.

My hope is to extend some love outward and to share some simple pleasures with anyone who cares to receive them.

Soul Reflections

Wishing my Dad a Happy Fathers Day in the sky. Heaven knows how much you are missed each and every day; how grateful I am to have had you in my life, and how privileged I feel to get to call you my Dad…

Thank you for blessing me with your love and for always being my guiding light. Loving you always, forgetting your never xx

Soul Strolls

During the Queen’s birthday weekend here in Melbourne last week, we took a day trip to Daylesford to enjoyed a lakeside lunch at The Boathouse. The sun was shining, the lake was peaceful and still, and the food was yummo! The perfect get away we’d been craving. We strolled around the town perusing the antique shops and boutiques.

The simplest things makes life so rich.

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The Boathouse, Daylesford

Soul Food

Today I would like to share with you this Raw-ish Caramel Ginger-nut Slice from one of my favourite health and wellness sites. It looks incredible. I’m always looking for healthy alternatives to satisfy my sweet tooth, and this one seems divine! I hope you have as much fun trying it as I will.

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Soul Music

In memory of Dad, I am sharing Bob Dylan’s Forever Young. Dad was a huge Dylan fan, and this track, which was played at Dad’s funeral, reminds me of the way Dad lived his life. He will always be forever young in our hearts.


Soul Sisters

I am sharing a beautiful post titled To The Beautiful Women Who Is Striving To Be Skinny by My Own Private Idaho. A powerful piece that acknowledges the way women become so entangled by the numbers on the scale. Here we have a stunning reminder of our inner worth and beauty.

I wish you all a peaceful Sunday. On this day, may we remember our Fathers past and present and send them peace and love.

In love and light,

Hayley xx

Sacred Energy

protect your energy
Empaths are highly sensitive beings who can sense another’s pain and feel it as their own. You’ll know if you are an empath because you tend to see the best in others and their hidden potential. You are trusting and optimistic which can sometimes lead to others taking advantage of your kindness for their own gain. Empath’s struggle to see anyone suffer and will go above and beyond to ease the pain of others. Your optimism and desire to heal often exposes you to a number of harsh, toxic energies in your bid to make others feel better. The problem with this is it can leave you feeling depleted and drained.

Yes, it is ok to be giving, gentle and kind. But it is not ok to be taken advantage of. How is anyone supposed to take responsibility for their lives if you continue to make excuses for their behavior? And how are you to ever feel vibrant and healthy if you are allowing others to continue to draw from your energy reserves without reciprocation?

If you have found yourself in a situation where you are constantly giving with very little in return, if you are often placing another’s happiness before you own – then it is very possible that you have found yourself in a toxic situation and are experiencing energy imbalance.

Be wise and know that you cannot help everyone. Become attuned to those who take without giving in return. Be willing to set healthy boundaries and strong enough to walk away from those who do not have your best interest at heart.

In love and light,

Hayley xx

 

The Gift of Sight

two gifts
When I said goodbye to Dad for the last time, there’s one lesson I learnt – life is fleeting.

With the recent terrorist attacks in Manchester and London, along with the many other lives lost each day around the globe, we are reminded to hug our loved ones.

Forgive quickly, love passionately, and don’t sweat the small stuff. Life is too precious, too fragile, too fleeting to hold grudges, to love cautiously and to squander our days dreaming instead of doing.

Be willing to let go. Don’t be afraid to say “I love you…” you never know when it will be your last. See life for what it is, a gift. Live courageously. Laugh often (and loudly!) Spread joy. Be the untethered force of light that you are. There’s no need to live every day like it is your last… Choose instead, to live every day like it is your first… With a sense of childlike wonder, rapture and appreciation. Give thanks for the two gifts that you opened today – your eyes.

For today is another day you get to live.

In love & light,

Hayley xx