You Have Permission to Be Happy

friendship, Relationships

There was this particular summer where Austin and I were on a very tight budget. Not only had we decided that we couldn’t take a trip to visit friends, we also didn’t extra to do other things around town. It was a very difficult year for me….and then I threw Facebook in the mix.

Facebook Has Been Hard On Me

I’ve written before about how Facebook was negatively affecting me and my relationships. During that summer where it felt like we were on lockdown, I felt like everyone else was having the best summer of their lives. On any given day, there were scores of my friends that were going to the beach, visiting friends, or on a cruise.

It was very hard for me to look at other people’s happiness. Not that I wasn’t happy for them, but I felt it magnified my disappointment with life. On account of that, I stopped sharing the good things that are happening in my life now with my friends.

Great Things Are Happening For Me

There have been some really incredible things that have been happening for me and instead of embracing them, I’ve kept myself from being too happy. Why bother getting happy about things if I don’t feel I have permission to share it with others. Naturally, the happy things in our lives will just spill out and overflow.

I’ve been reading this book called, The Happiness Dare by Jennifer Dukes Lee. She has been challenging me about pursuing happiness. The first chapter in the book talks about how we have permission to be happy. It’s not selfish to be happy. In fact, God wants us to pursue happiness in a way that will honor Him.

What if your happiness made a difference in the world?

Jennifer explores that questions in this book, and her conclusion is that it absolutely does! Happy people help to make others happy. Don’t you think our world could use a good dose of happiness and hope? I do…which is why I’m taking The Happiness Dare.

You can follow my daily posts on Instagram or my Facebook page for the things I’m finding that makes me happy. Also, I wrote a post yesterday about the things that are making me happy this week.

If you want to read more The Happiness Dare, which is the only book I’m reading in full this year, check out the post I wrote about it. (confession time, I tend to skim through books, but I’m actually reading this entire book. I’ve read the 1st chapter twice because it has been that helpful to me).

I love this quote from the book because she talked about her marriage:

This happiness we seek is not a wimpy emotion. Happiness has been advertised as some kittenish, fluffy feeling. In reality, happiness can make your heart race with excitement- and sometimes with a bit of fear. Because on your happiest days, we are worried it won’t last. My husband and I will go long stretches of argue-free days- and not just argue-free days, but truly happy and blissful days, days when I thank the good Lord for giving me that man I have. He’s so precious to me. But on those days, I’m also scared to live into the fullness of my happiness. I hold back my enthusiasm, and emotional tempering, because I’m afraid of what’s ahead.  -Jennifer Dukes Lee

Wow- right? How many days have I held back living into the fullness of my happiness, because I’m sure it is going to be taken from me tomorrow? I’d say almost every day. I feel like if I allow myself to embrace the happiness that I feel, it’ll be snatched from me and I’ll miss it even more. Oh, the heartache that will follow!

Jennifer challenges us that happiness isn’t in our circumstances or the things around us…it’s IN us. Happiness is right there inside of you, you just have to give yourself permission to cultivate it.

……and thoughts like these are exactly why I’m reading this book in full. Oh…I’ll be sharing more with you about my happiness style. You can find out what your happiness style is by taking this short test.

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