Happiness is the emotional experience created by you expressing the emotion of love. In every moment of joy and peace in your life you were creating love and expressing it. Feeling different qualities of happiness at different times is because there are millions of variations of love that you can express.
Have you taken time to contemplate where your emotions come from? Actually they don’t usually come from outside of you. You create them. When you create sadness you then feel the sadness you create. When feel anger it is because you created that emotion.
Misunderstanding Your Emotions
We are not used to thinking of our emotions as something we create. Common syntax of language produces the misinterpretation that emotions come from something or someone external. How many times have we heard or said words to the effect, “He/She makes me so angry/frustrated/sad.” Or perhaps the same reference to the opposite emotions. “He/She makes me so happy.” This phrasing is so common in language that we overlook the disempowering paradigm it creates.
Thoughts like these imply to your mind that an external circumstance like traffic or another person is determining your emotional state. Your belief in words with these assumptions can have a hypnotizing effect. Their impact builds through time and repetition until it really appears that it is about someone or something external. When mental patterns like this occur other hypnotic beliefs are forming as well. You are also creating a false self image as a person powerless over your emotions.
By believing a few symbolic words and their underlying assumptions, it can feel like love, joy and happiness are beyond your reach.
Aside from creating a victimizing paradigm of beliefs it also induces an interesting compensating strategy. If your happiness is experienced as a result of external people or events then you will attempt to control people and events in order to be happy. The reverse happens when you interact with people who live by this emotionally powerless paradigm. They will attempt to control you in order to satisfy their external need for happiness. Living by these beliefs generally puts emotional strain and drama on a relationship.
From Interpretation to Expression
People will say that their spouse or partner makes them happy. This is a misinterpretation. It’s really their expression of love for their wife, husband, or lover that is creating their state of joy. When they no longer love that person, nothing that person does will “make” them happy. At that point they might say that their ex is “making” them angry or upset. Also not true. They are making themselves angry or upset with the story they believe and express about their ex.
Years later they might have forgiven their ex about the issues of the past. They look upon that relationship as a growth experience and perceive it with gratitude and fondness. Their ex may not have changed much over time but the emotional expression towards them has. How we feel emotionally about someone is our creation. How we feel changes depending on how we express our story about them.
The secret element determining your emotions is in the interpretation of the story you believe and express. The facts might be the same but how you interpret them changes your emotional experience.
Some people say that time heals all wounds. This isn’t true. People can take anger and resentment to their grave. What heals emotional wounds is changing your belief in the interpretation of the story you have about someone. When you adopt a different interpretation, you change the expression of emotions. The challenge here is that you really have to change what you believe. Saying it is not enough.
One way of changing your story about the past is forgiveness. Forgiveness changes your interpretations and frees you from continued expressions of judgment and anger. You have the power to change your interpretation and emotions quickly, slowly or not at all.
The Secret World of Interpretations
If two people experience the same event they can have completely different emotional experiences. The difference is in the interpretation the mind makes. If two people are caught in the rain one might laugh at himself for forgetting his umbrella. The other might judge himself and feel like an idiot. The difference between being happy or unhappy is not controlled by circumstances like the weather, but by belief in the interpretation.
The mind is fast. It makes an interpretation in the instant between perception and emotional reaction. In that hidden moment the mind constructs a virtual reality of assumptions and calculates opinions, judgments, and reactions.
When you realize you forgot something the mind retraces where the item is, imagines how things should have happened, imagines what you should have done, makes a comparison between what you did and what you should have done, judges you based on the comparison, creates a negative self image, and then condemns you for being that false image it manufactured in it’s secret reality. Without awareness the only part you notice is the concluding comment, “I’m such an idiot,” and the corresponding emotions.
If you have awareness and pay attention you can intervene in that secret world of interpretation. Changing the interpretations your mind makes in that virtual reality will change the resulting emotional expressions. Until you unlock and change those interpretations, part of your happiness will remain a secret from you.
Most people have had their mind conditioned to interpret that happiness will result from doing things they are supposed to do or come from achieving certain goals. In this way the mind perceives love and happiness as something to be pursued and attained. That’s a very limited interpretation that fails to recognize the power you have to create emotions such as love and gratitude.
The pathway to your expression of love is the interpretations, beliefs, and perspective in the mind. It is those interpretations in the mind that control whether you will allow your self to express love, or if you will express emotions based in fear.
When you change the interpretations in that secret world of the mind, you unlock the doors that hold back your happiness. You are then free to let your love come out of you.
For practical steps you can take to take control of this secret world of assumptions and beliefs in the mind, and gain mastery over your happiness, download and listen to the mp3 audio in the Self Mastery program. The first sessions are free.
This article is posted at http://pathwaytohappiness.com/happiness/2008/04/29/secret-happiness/