Earlier this year, I wrote a blog post about finding happiness in 2015. I was on a mission. A mission to be happier.
I knew it was possible. I also knew that I didn't need to look anywhere else except inside myself.
In order to be happier, I simply needed to create my own happiness.
What makes you happy?
I feel like that question is thrown around a lot and no one ever really knows how to answer it.
I know that, for me, I never really knew how to answer that question.
What makes me happy?
Years ago, my answer probably would have been something along the lines of: pizza, friends, sleeping in, and going to the beach.
(Let's try not forget about how simple life is -- for most of us -- when you're in your early twenties.)
Today, as I approach my thirtieth birthday, my priorities are much different. It's not a surprise that yoga is at the very top of my list.
And although practicing yoga does indeed make me very happy, it's the feeling after a practice that is the true reason yoga is at the top of my happiness list.
Practicing yoga makes me feel strong, powerful, and confident. It makes me feel like I could do anything I've ever dreamed of. After a practice, when I lay down on my mat for savasana (the final resting posture), I feel so peaceful. I feel alive. More alive than I usually feel all day long. The room is completely silent and still with the exception of the sound of my breath. I feel my heart beating in my chest, pumping my body full of blood loaded with fresh oxygen. My mind feels quiet, allowing my busy brain to finally get a break.
In all honesty, after a yoga practice, I usually look like a hot mess, but I feel perfect.
More specifically, I feel happy.
I open my eyes after savasana and can't help but smile. I am living in the present moment, feeling happy, awake, alive, and well. Life doesn't get much better than that moment.
As I go on with my day (I usually practice in the morning), I realize that the practice of yoga never ends. I realize that happiness really is a choice. And it's a choice you make many, many times throughout the day.
I spend a lot of time in the car driving to my classes and THAT is a true practice of yoga. Practicing patience, and most importantly, remembering to breathe. Remembering that you can't control everything. When the person in front of you is driving too slow. When you're running late and are catching every red light. When someone cuts you off on the highway and almost gives you a heart attack. It's those moments that I come back to my yoga practice. It's those moments that I have to remember to just breathe.
So, what makes me happy? Yoga.
And not just practicing yoga, but practicing the lessons I learn from my yoga practice. Taking yoga off of my mat and living it every day in real life. Living in this moment; not in the past and not in the future. That is what makes me happy.
If you didn't find your happiness this year, keep looking. Dig deeper. All the happiness you will ever need is within yourself.
Wishing you all of the happiness in the world.
P.S. You know what else makes me really happy? Dogs.
I love, love, love, love, love, love, LOVE all animals!
(this is my dog niece, Zoey)