“If you have good thoughts they will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely.” – Roald Dahl
I love this quote. I guess you could say that it’s my personal life motto. And it’s so true. Once you fully grasp this idea, that beauty is something that originates on the inside, not on the outside, the effect is SO liberating.
Two years ago, if someone was to ask me, “Are you happy?” I would have robotically answered, “Yes, of course.” But the real truth was that I really wasn’t, or not in the way that I could be or am now. It wasn’t until I started on this new path of self-love, meditation and yoga (I’m really into Strala at the moment) that I actually began to see what true happiness was all about.
It all started when I met Jennifer Kass, a spiritual mentor, and within one meeting, I realized that big changes needed to happen within myself. What really caught my attention was when I asked her, “How long will this take for me to be happier and live better?” She said, “One day.” Happiness comes from the INSIDE, not the outside, not even from my job, boyfriend, friends or anything materialistic, especially money. The crazy part is that once you figure out how to be happy, everything you have ever wanted in life just comes to you. It’s kind of like the secret – whatever you want is actually attainable, even if it seems like a crazy dream.
I asked Jennifer to compile a list of simple things that everyone can do to be happy, and of course through happiness comes beauty inside and out. Because isn’t that what we all want anyway?
Jennifer: There was a time in my life when I was living in a toxic job, a relationship that was no longer working, and stress was wreaking havoc on my health. I had no daily practice and did not know how to take care of myself; I was constantly searching outside of myself for my happiness and answers.
All of this changed when I became willing to do things differently and I stepped onto my spiritual path. It is now my mission to awaken all willing hearts and minds to the power of love, which is a force that lives within and all around us. At the same time, it’s our daily practices of self-care and listening to our intuition that help us learn what is best for us and what is not.
Over the past few years, I’ve discovered the blueprint for happiness, which is actually unique for each individual, so the blueprint itself is what helps you dive deeper into what your own inner guidance is telling you. From there we are able to navigate our lives in the highest possible way. Here, I share some of the first steps to connecting with yourself and mastering your self-care in what I call The Happiness Blueprint: 10 Steps to Create a Daily Practice.
1. Water with fresh lemon is the quickest way to alkalize our bodies, neutralizing acid forming foods and drinks like alcohol and sugar, and banishing breakouts. Start with a glass first thing in the morning before the day gets busy.
2. Cooking is the biggest tool for weight-loss and health. It’s a complete myth that cooking is complicated, expensive or time-consuming. Focus on plant-based foods to keep it simple and colorful.
3. Exercise will create more physical, mental and emotional balance. Connecting with our bodies in a loving way that helps heal our body image and boost confidence is extremely important.
4. Sleep is essential to supporting us with the right energy, clarity and focus to do all we want to do in the world. Sometimes doing nothing rather than being productive is going to get us there faster.
5. Daily greens. Make dark, leafy greens your staple for every meal–they even have protein in them. Start the day with a green juice or smoothie or toss some kale or arugula into your regular meals. These sun-kissed plants help detoxify, beautify, and boost energy.
6. Create something. Every day we have the opportunity to express ourselves and our innate gifts and passions. It could be cooking a meal, painting a picture, writing, decorating, taking pictures – the more we create the more we feed our soul.
7. A morning meditation, even if it’s just beginning with 5-minutes will be the catalyst for your growth, giving you the space to listen to your answers and guidance within. Prayer is asking; meditation is listening. Also, begin each day with a morning prayer or intention the moment you wake up, closing your eyes again and saying, “I choose loving perceptions over fearful perceptions today.” This instantly aligns your thoughts with the loving voice of your inner guide rather than the mean voice of the ego. I send out daily prayers and intentions that you can sign up for here.
8. Be outside. We all feel a sense of peace and calm when we go into nature; even if it’s just for a walk outside during your lunch break, make it happen. Nature allows us to reconnect with ourselves and is the perfect reset button when we need a dose of happiness and clarity.
9. Giving is receiving. Focus on giving rather than getting love because you have a limitless amount of love within you and it will come back to you tenfold. Smile at a stranger, forgive a friend, hold a door open for someone.
10. Choose happiness. Every thought takes us closer to love or closer to fear, closer to truth or closer to suffering. We can witness and observe our thoughts throughout the day and choose them wisely. We create our lives from the inside out and the more beautiful our mind is, the more beautiful our life will be.
Thanks Jennifer! If you’re ready to dive deeper, you can download The Happiness Blueprint, a free 25-page guide to create a life you love from the inside out. I chose the images above I have taken at places where I find time to really connect with myself. I hold them very close to my heart: Antigua, Colorado, Zurich and La Jolla, California.