Can you fully enjoy when life is good?

I wonder if the following sounds familiar: You are feeling really happy. Suddenly, your state of pure joy gets interrupted by this icky feeling creeping up. At first you don’t really know what it is. Then your mind starts wandering… worry, guilt, fear… You worry, what could happen to destroy your ‘fortune’. SOMETHING could happen. You could fall ill - or a loved one, maybe the next global economic crisis is just around the corner. Or you feel guilty. How do you deserve this ‘luck’? How can you be happy, while someone else is not well? And before you even notice, you find yourself making up dozens of different scenarios in your head, your joy disappeared, maybe you feel tense…. And maybe there is also a little bit of relief, because this state feels much more familiar, you feel less vulnerable and you didn’t quite believe that you deserve your joy anyways. In my experience this scenario sounds somehow familiar to many people. Why is this so? The mind has a tendency to negative thinking. Its main job is to keep us safe and anticipate danger. It tries to prepare us for the worst. However, it often doesn’t. Instead it only takes away the joy of the present. The mind is an excellent servant, but a terrible master. After all, life is risky and uncertain, and no matter how much we strive for control and certainty, we won’t get it. So does this pattern really serve us? NO. Wouldn’t it serve us more to savour the good times and recharge our batteries? For sure! So what to do? It all starts with awareness. Until you become aware of such patterns, you are hijacked by unconscious programs. We can learn to notice such patterns quickly. It’s much easier to break out of that vicious cycle in your mind before you are too deep in it. With practice you’ll become more aware of these turnings of the mind and learn to change them. With practice you can learn to be more present, instead of letting your mind run off to the future or past. And lastly, if you find deeper underlying issues, like shame, guilt, anxiety or the belief that you don’t deserve your joy – that’s a great discovery that you get the chance to work on (by yourself or with a professional). Are you interested in some tools? Comment or message me and I’ll share in a message or the next post. With love Alex

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