Top Ten Tips for Happily Ever After - NOWWritten by Teresa Clark
If she’s learned anything during her quest to this moment it’s this: You don’t FIND happy – you CREATE it. No one can MAKE you happy – you BECOME happy.
My last child just got married! The day was perfect in every way that mattered. My mother heart is full to overflowing. This daughter waited thirty years to find the man she would love forever. Her thirty-year journey has been one of longing and satisfaction, dreaming and broken hearts, doubting and complete self-assurance. In other words, it’s been a roller coaster! A wedding wish expressed to her triggered this post.
The wish: “May you find your happily ever after.” It made us both giggle.
If she’s learned anything during her quest to this moment it’s this: You don’t FIND happy – you CREATE it. No one can MAKE you happy – you BECOME happy. Happily ever after does not start on your wedding day, it starts NOW. My daughter would have wasted a decade if she'd chosen to live any other way.
One wise man coined it this way, “Come what may and love it!” That’s especially true when it comes to living happily ever after. By all means, dream of the magical day, but create your happily ever after now, so come what may, you can love it! We’ve chatted about this a lot over the years, as a result we have a top ten list for creating your happily ever after NOW:
1 – Be the Person You Want to Marry
Want someone slim, daring and athletic? Be that person. Want someone deeply spiritual? Be that person. You get the idea. If you’ve drafted a dream list of qualities for you mate – make sure you have developed those qualities. After all, you’re stuck with you forever!
2 – Master the Art of Forgiving
Don’t carry grudges or keep score. You are imperfect; everyone is. Get over it. Forgive quickly. Forgiveness is more action than words. Say it and mean it. It’s not your job to remember & remind. Take one moment, one folly, and one weakness at a time - start each day fresh. Start now. You won’t believe how happy this makes YOU.
3 – Become a Prayer-Master
Prayer comes in many forms – be comfortable with all of them. From heart-felt out-pouring of gratitude to the desperate, “Help me God, please!” (& everything in between) you need prayer. Start now. Maintaining an ongoing conversation and relationship with your Creator will carry you through more than you can imagine.
4 – Embrace the Now
Don’t buy into this myth: “everything will be perfect when… “
If you’re not careful a lifetime of perfect moments will slip through your fingers while you’re dreaming of the perfect everything. Trust me, there are things about NOW you’re going to miss. Enjoy the moment. Log the daily miracles and little triumphs daily in your heart. They’ll add up to a perfectly joyous life.
5 – Don’t Ask WHY
You wouldn’t understand the answers yet, anyway. My 18-year-old daughter would have been afraid of her 30-year-old self! She wouldn’t have opened her heart to listen to her own advice. Search for what you can learn from the moment. You’re being tutored for something in your future, I assure you.
6 – Count Your Blessings
The miracle that accompanies counting blessings is that it becomes more difficult to add up the lack. A full heart does not seek for what is missing. A full heart continually expands to encompass more.
7 – Outlaw Comparisons
Whether you are comparing past relationships to the present, or current behaviors to the past, or your situation to someone else’s – this is a slippery slope towards dissatisfaction. Not because you have the lesser deal but because you’ve created an unrealistic scenario. You don’t get to choose between your life and their life. You get to choose between peace and discomfort. It really is all about you. You are the master of your satisfaction.
8 – Sacrifice for the Greater Good
Learn the art of sacrifice. Giving up something (your time, talents, energy, plans) in the pursuit of helping someone else leads to the ultimate high. You won’t believe how good someone else’s gratitude-filled smile makes you feel when it’s directed at you.
9 – Laugh Daily
If you’re not laughing there is a part of your soul in atrophy. You don’t want to lose that muscle! Find a reason to laugh every day – no matter how tough the day. Laughter lightens the burden and softens the heart.
10 – Express Your Love – No Matter What
People make mistakes. They will hurt you, especially when you love them. More often it’s folly, not malicious intent. But even if they are malicious, express your love. This is you taking the higher road. This is you strengthening your own heart. Don’t create a fantasy box you expect others to fit in. No one can read your mind, no matter how they love you. If you need them to do or say a specific thing tell them, train them, then love every effort they make - even when they fail.
Focus on these ten tips and you’ll naturally attract the mate you’ve been dreaming of. But if not, IT WILL BE OKAY, because you’ve mastered the art of living your happily ever after NOW.
Are you living your happily ever after - Now? What steps can you take to find joy in the moment? What burdens or heart aches can you set aside to lighten your heart? How do you plan to embrace the NOW? For ideas to write your own love story, check out our Wedding story starter.
A national award-winning storyteller, historian and author, she is best known for her original works and recollections of life's experiences blended with history. Teresa has presented and performed throughout the United States. Of her, it has been said, "Charming, witty, soulful, and wise, her performances are filled with a compelling sense of wonder and an irresistable zest for life." Her story work involves performance, education, production, and advocacy. From the main stage to individual consultations in living rooms across America, she delights in the excavation and sharing of family story. Most importantly, she is a wife, mother, and grandmother to her favorite playmates and best friends.
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