It is amazing how doing a little introspection and being honest with yourself about the details of what transpired in a situation can shed so much light on why you may have reacted to a situation instead of responded to it mindfully. When you take away your ego and sit in silence, you allow your highest self to emerge and illuminate the situation for you. The perceived darkness was only there because your eyes were closed and the clouds of judgment were hiding the beautiful sun that was trying to peek through. The person that stands to gain from changing your perception and thereby changing your reality, is first and foremost you.
So many times we perceive that if we change, the other person has won. Some common thoughts are...
Why should I change? Why can't they? They are the ones who caused the problem in the first place. If they wouldn't have said or done that I wouldn't have reacted that way and we wouldn't be in this mess.
First of all, if you wait for that to happen chances are you will be waiting for a very long time. Secondly, why should someone else determine how long you are going to feel miserable inside? Why not take charge of your life and realize that your perception of the situation may be key to your own personal happiness and also the single most important thing that will change your reality.
That is what happiness is. It is a moment in time when your expectation of an experience is met. Your perception of that expectation being met makes you feel blissful inside. It's a great feeling and it's very addictive. Why then do we choose not to feel more of this blissful feeling? It is because we feel that the power of our happiness resides in the hands of another. In an instant, you can go from being miserable to being happy. It is a conscious choice.
Think back to a time when you went from a miserable state to a happy one. I am sure when you look back you will realize that shift did not happen because the situation changed. That shift happened because you consciously decided that you were tired of feeling that way and that you wanted to feel happy again. You then took steps to change that internal perception.
One great way to cultivate that feeling of happiness inside you is to sit in silence, for just a few minutes, and just be. Just observe your breath without judging how fast or how slow it is going or what thoughts are coming and going and allow yourself that few minutes to actually feel your own presence. The presence of your true self. The essence of who you are.
Then, feel your heartbeat. It is a beautiful rhythmic beat that is uniquely yours. That heartbeat is the cadence to which your physical body marches. It is also the cadence to which your inner self smiles or frowns. Your perception of a situation can make it beat faster or slower, skip a beat, or flutter. This organ is your barometer that shows how you are taking in your experiences and digesting them. When you sit in silence and feel your heartbeat you can actually recreate and cultivate feelings of happiness inside you. You think of someone or something that made you smile or someone you love or a pleasant experience you had. The beauty of doing this is that you will find that those feelings stay with you throughout the day and throughout your exchanges. You will find that you smile more both internally and externally.
The key to happiness? Don't let anyone rent space in your head for free. That space is prime real estate.