“In psychological terms, the issue of man’s survival does not confront his consciousness as an issue of “life or death,” but as an issue of “happiness or suffering.” Happiness is the successful state of life, suffering is the warning signal of failure, of death. Just as the pleasure-pain mechanism of man’s body is an automatic indicator of his body’s welfare or injury, a barometer of its basic alternative, life or death—so the emotional mechanism of man’s consciousness is geared to perform the same function, as a barometer that registers the same alternative by means of two basic emotions: joy or suffering. Emotions are the automatic results of man’s value judgments integrated by his subconscious; emotions are estimates of that which furthers man’s values or threatens them, that which is for him or against him—lightning calculators giving him the sum of his profit or loss.”

I recently learned that many of the emotional wounds, carried by adults, are given to them before the age of six (6). Events that occurred during our childhood that had a derogatory impact on our life are often transferred into these emotional scars that are capable of triggering knee-jerk reactions as adults. From rejection to abandonment, many of our childhood fears bleed their way into our lives.

It’s silly to think that grown adults would be scared of monsters living under their bed; something this outrageous and clearly un-true is an obvious irrational fear. Replace the monster with a proverbial monster…replace the proverbial monster with one of these deeply rooted emotional scars. Ponder.

One of my more obvious fears has to do with needles; syringes, blood draws, and IV’s are all things my mind has convinced me to be terrified of. On the flip side, one of my more recent discoveries of personal fears has to do with my own ability to be happy, free, and content with my life.

Looking at old (dorky) photos of my younger days, I was blown away at how much I smiled as a child/teen. I was pretty damn cute as a baby. I was sitting at a Fourbucks with a friend of mine, just over a year and a half ago, and he commented that I never smiled or laughed. Stoic and cold. It was only a few short months ago that he and I were sitting in my living room and I realized my laughter and smile flowed freely and without hesitation.

For me, discovering that I had emotionally locked away my desire for happiness; feeling as if it was something I had yet to earn, or simply didn’t deserve, was an incredible feat of personal growth.

While I wasn’t necessarily an emotional Debbie Downer these past few years, I’m refreshed in knowing that I am worthy of happiness, joy, contentment, love, life, wealth, and freedom.

Life continues to get better and better.

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