You Must Be Willing To Live Now

October 26, 2016

Yesterday is over and you cannot go back to it. It is that simple, changing your own journey in this wonderful life takes very few steps. The steps can be difficult for some and easy for others but the outcome of happiness is worth mastering your thoughts.
To get started I had to fall to the lowest point in my life. I had to be less than human, for years I believed with a fervor that I was limited to what was being dealt to me. Whatever life threw at me was accepted and survived through. Yes, I survived 41 years. It was not until I saw my children smile at an emergency homeless shelter that we were placed in when I realized how to live. If my children could find happiness in a time & space that felt like hell to me. Why couldn’t I? I watched these two life living souls flourish within an environment that could potentially be the end of our family, we may have been separated due to our loss of financial means, our home & almost our beloved family pet Sparkle. My mind was a whirlwind of negative scenarios, the what ifs and could BE’s haunted my every waking thought. They limited my ability to sleep. Restoring your life from the rubble is no easy task, especially if your own mind is the major contributor to your circumstances. I believed the worst of myself, even prior to not being able to provide basic necessities for my children. I was my own worst enemy. I would conjure negativity into my life by believing that is all that I am worth. Hardships seemed to consistently find me even though I was trying to hide behind my bubble of hard work and more hard work pays off. Well, sometimes it doesn’t, and more often than not in all my worries, if I had just released the belief that I was not worthy I would have been on a path of living much quicker.

For whatever reasons – mine were many failed relationships, physical/mental abuse, poor self-image, lack of money, few family and even lesser friends. I came from a place of self-hatred, there were less than a handful of times that I felt worthy of love, success, & happiness. I am thankful now for all the hardships that arose in the fall of 2012. If it had not been for those experiences, I may have never made the decision to take my happiness into my own hands. And that is what you must do: Decide to Live instead of just surviving. Now saying it is easy, but when you have lived this fashion for decades and accepted it as truth you will be skeptical that it could be different. You will backtrack and doubt the words that thoughts that you have, but I will attest to the truth behind your new-found beliefs. You can be happy and live a fulfilled life if you choose to.

Begin with a simple mantra, a phrase that motivates you uplifts you and prepares you for the myriad of obstacles that will definitely be coming your way. I began saying I would fake it until I made it ~ I would plan a course of action that would counteract my negative beliefs about myself. I searched every day for positive quotes and choose the many that resonated with how I felt on any particular day. I would verbalize self-proclaimed happiness. I made sure that regardless of any humps that I may hit during the course of the day, that I had a positive word to say about it. “I am strong, I can smile through anything, I will not allow my happiness to be removed, You are capable!” I would make sure that I repeated these positive sayings until I got through whatever obstacle presented itself. I planned not to give power to any negativity.
Now, this is an ongoing process and I am determined to master it, but this is no time limited program, where I can say ok in 4 years, 3 if I take extra credit hours over the summers, I will have my degree in “Life”. Nope, I understand that this is and will remain a work in progress. I know that with time I will be less apt to question my own positive thoughts or dreams. I will one day forget that I ever allowed a negative word to come out of my mouth about myself. There are so many other people who are willing to take that position and if I do not choose to love me there is no one else required to. Isn’t it amazing that I can self-deprecate the one and only being in the world that’s required to be with me no matter what? My brain may as well have been an enemy, a jealous bloke that only wanted to destroy me from the inside out. It seemed very easy to lower myself for the acceptance of others, to not believe the good that people thought of me – based on my experiences that no one else saw. 

At an early age, I was made to fear, feel less than and misinterpret love and sexual contact based on a few supposedly trusted people in my childhood. These people lead me to feel inferior, they helped me (yes helped me is what I said) to understand life on a skewed perspective. They helped me to destroy who I could have been, they stifled my abilities and tucked them so far behind me that I could not see any light. I forgive them, I release them of the power they held over me for so long. They know nothing of my struggles and they went on to live, so I ask myself today why shouldn’t I live as well. Be happy in the now, the today, this very instant. Even as I write I feel a relief a new-found happiness in the “me” to come. In the next five minutes, I will have conquered many of my previous fears, obstacles, let go of burdens with the strength of an all-powerful wizard that just waves her magic wand to change the circumstance. Yes, it is that easy! After so many years of fighting with my thoughts and holding on to all the negative crap that had happened to me, I finally understand how people in dire and horrible circumstances can still live, how they can take the abuse, punishment, and pain, just to move on in the future and live. Live a fulfilled and happy life. I am thankful for my circumstance of homelessness, thankful to it that it brought me out of a mind fog. A blinded existence of hardship and self-torture. I am free now, free to make the daily changes necessary to have the outcome of a smile, a laugh at all the little quirks that make me up.

Changing long-term ideas about yourself may not be achieved without great effort, but it can be done. It needs repetition, constant affirmation from self and to know that it is more than ok to be who you are and who you were, does not even matter. The past is just that, GONE! I can’t bring it back, nor do I want to. I want to take every opportunity to smile that I can. I want to flood my life with more good images than I ever had bad. I want to believe that no matter my circumstance if I breathe it’s been a learning experience. I am finding the good even in turmoil. I ask what have I gained from this experience and how do I make sure it never happens again? See, learning is a positive experience so take that as a presence of good qualities/features rather than an absence of.

So, to begin you should change your thinking. Positive thoughts all the way or at least a majority of the time. If those little negatives jump in your brain and try to take over, combat them with any good, affirmative or constructive thought you can muster. Second release the past. I mean really let it go. When it tries to rear its ugly head in your mind blast it with a dose of self-love, take other actions, think about all the good you have in a moment. There is a beauty to be found in everything. Even if it takes a microscope to find it. Searching alone will take your mind off history, you learned from it, you experienced it but you never have to go back to it. Focus on the satisfaction of being out of the struggle. Finally, take immediate action to produce the happiness you desire. Say it, believe it and work towards it. This simple formula will bring you to a happiness that will not be wavered by anything that comes into your life. Keep working at it until its routine in your life to think, act and will your destiny to what your happiness in the moment you are in, build greater happiness from the dreams you dream and know that you are deservedly so able to love, laugh and live better than you ever thought possible. The positive power you put out will yield a great return in your future.


  1. Reply


    Dear Syri,
    What a beautiful post. Thank you for your recent encouraging comment on my blog. Nice to ‘meet’ you! Blessings, Valerie

    1. Reply

      Syri Gerstner

      My pleasure Valerie Thanks bunches! Brought a smile to my face and we all need smiles. 🙂

  2. Reply


    Great advice. It is true that our thoughts really do matter and negativity in our mind paints the world around us in dark colors. It is a process to be on the more positive side but it holds so much more promise than hanging on to the past, right?:)

    1. Reply

      Syri Gerstner

      Dear Ieva, very sorry for the delayed response. Surgery put me up, well out of sorts for a bit. I am happily recovered and back at being just me, learning how to enjoy the current moment instead of wallowing in the past. You are so correct! And really to thrive in this life is HOPE.

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