The Trouble with Thinking ‘I’ll be happy when….’

August 8, 2015 6:11 pm

Do you often find yourself saying the words…’I’ll be happy when…?’

It could be anything that you end that little sentence with. You’ll be happy…..when you get a new job. When you are in a perfect relationship. When you drop a dress size. When you recover your health?

Our minds convince us, that once we reach that amazing destination THEN we will finally be happy. But for some reason…this is often not the case.

Although it’s great to have goals, the problem with this way of thinking, is that if we project our happiness into the future, it makes it very difficult to experience happiness in the present moment. It leads us to a feeling of lack. A feeling of ‘not having enough’.

If we are striving in a future based way, rejecting our current selves and lives as not being enough, this is a guaranteed formula for unhappiness and dissatisfaction.

Opposite of what you are wanting right?

I started contemplating this earlier today, when I was feeling a bit fed up. This weekend I have caught a virus and as any of you with autoimmune conditions will know, a normal virus affects us much more than the average person. So, my ‘poor me’ voice began piping up in my head a bit. You know the kind of sentences I’m talking about here.

Then, as I looked up, I saw my cute little house rabbit hopping around on the floor in front of me and a bit of a wake up call happened.

Ralph (the bunny) is nine, and has been by my side through some of my absolute darkest days. He’s the loveliest boy, and last weekend, he got very sick. All I wanted, more than anything, was for him to live. It’s taken a huge vets bill, force feeding him horrid medicine and having him sleep in my bedroom, to get him to a place where he seems to have miraculously recovered.


What has Ralph being poorly got to do with this blog post?

Well, as I looked at his little fluffy body hopping around earlier today, just as my ‘poor me’ voice was piping up inside my head, it suddenly dawned on me, that this time last week all I wanted was for Ralph to be okay. If he had died? I would now be immersed in grieving for him and wishing he was here.

It’s strange, as soon as we get what we want, for some reason, the gratitude is fairly fleeting, and our mind attaches on to the next thing it wants.

I’ve also noticed a similar thing in my recovery journey. I vividly remember in my poorliest days, speaking to the universe, (or god, or whoever is out there) and pleading with them. All I wanted was to be able to lay peacefully without feeling dizzy. That was all. Even if I had to lay in that dark room for the rest of my life, I just wanted to feel comfortable as I lay there without the room spinning around me.

Then, as I got stronger and I was able to sit up again, the goal post shifted. I now wanted to ‘just be able to watch a bit of TV or read a page of a book’ then I would be happy.

Soon, it shifted again. ‘If I could just walk across mums garden unassisted’ then I would be happy.

This went on for a very long time, and if I’m honest? I still fall into this trap even now. My mind quickly forgetting how far I have come, and wanting the next thing. The next stage. Telling myself I can’t be happy until I ‘get there’.

It’s funny how our minds often focus on what we don’t have isn’t it? Rather than what we do have. I’m not saying, that gratitude makes everything ok. Of course it doesn’t. But a little shift in our perspective here and there, can make a big difference to how we feel today. Right now.

After all, today is all we have isn’t it? Whether our current situation is perfect or not.

Tuning into gratitude can raise our vibrational frequency massively. This in turn, alongside making us feel a bit better in this moment, also opens us up to receive more of the experiences we want in our lives, as opposed to those which we what we do not want.

Think of this image, how do you feel if you drop your head down, hunch your shoulders and think about all you don’t have? All you are lacking? The huge overwhelming road ahead? In comparison to how you feel if you hold your head up high, tune into your personal power and think of some of the things you have got in your life right now, and the steps forward you have taken – no matter how small. Feel the difference there? That is your vibration shifting.

If you want to read more about this, you can do so in the wonderful book ‘Ask and it is Given’ by Esther and Jerry Hicks. In this book they speak about reaching for the best feeling you have access to, and I guess, in essence, this is what I am talking about here. I’m not speaking of repressing feelings or overriding your current experience with positive thinking. As many of you will know, through my own experience, I have found that this does a lot more harm than good! But I am merely speaking of shifting your perspective.

Notice how you are speaking to yourself. Try and see some of the good in your life, even at times when your mind insists on telling you everything is awful. This will make YOU feel better in this present moment. It’s great to have future goals, to have a place you are striving for, but be mindful not to let this disregard all you do have right now.

thank you

Coming back to today. I am grateful that I can lay peacefully without the room spinning whilst my body heals from this virus, that I have a comfy clean bed to rest in and a roof over my head and of course, for my beautiful bunny rabbit and his extra bit of life.

I’m also grateful for each step I’ve made so far on my path to recovery. The small ones, and the bigger ones.

What are you grateful for today? Don’t forget to see the little things….


Love, Emma


  • Rachel says:

    Lovely post Emma. So true and helpful for us all. It’s hard to resist the minds incessant urge for the next thing, but so much better if we can enjoy what is. Xxx

  • meg brook says:

    This really resonates with me, sis! You have so much wisdom. Love you so much xxxxx

  • Consciously Healthy says:

    I only just noticed these comments in here!

    Rachel I’m glad you enjoyed the post 🙂 and you’re right, it’s a big lesson to learn but such a valuable one.

    Meg – ah sis 🙂 I love you so much too! Glad you enjoyed reading this one xxxxx

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