O.K. With Me

Never underestimate the investment you make in yourself.

Contributed by Natasha Aquin [Crown + Bliss, Owner & Co-Founder]

For as long as I can remember, my idea of happiness stemmed from the accomplishment of vocational milestones, the success of relationships, and the acquisition of material things. My dependence on these “things” only led to feelings of disappointment and what I know now as temporary happiness. I got the job, and then the promotion, a dream boyfriend, an awesome group of like-minded friends. I acquired real estate, spent regular time with family – I was healthy, young, and living in a beautiful cosmopolitan with every opportunity within reach. Still, deep down I wasn’t happy. Something was missing. I was unable to understand why my life didn’t feel like it was enough. I was constantly thinking about what was next – what was to come. It’s cliché to say, but I stressed the importance of living in the moment and I was doing everything but that.

When I wasn’t riding a wave of euphoria - I was bored. Unfulfilled. Critical. Unappreciative. I blamed anything in my life I could on my unhappiness as opposed to taking accountability. There would be times where I felt friends weren’t making as much of an effort as I was with them. At work I wasn’t getting assigned to the campaigns I thought were exciting, challenging, and would advance my career. I know I created this unhappy reality because of the mindset I had.

Why am I talking about happiness in conjunction to growth? Because my awareness of what made me “happy” and what the word means to me now has allowed me to grow as an individual. It’s also given me the tools I need to have healthy and fulfilling relationships. Let me make something clear, I’m not saying I’ve figured it all out and now live in this blissful bubble. No, allowing yourself to grow as an individual and especially as a woman is hard as fuck. Your awareness of your circumstances, how you feel inside, and what you feel is “missing” from your life, helps to give you the tools you need to focus on your growth. I truly believe that this is a continuous journey that doesn’t stop when you reach a certain age. As long as you keep yourself open and willing to learn and grow, you’ll do just that.

I thought what I needed in my life to be happy and fulfilled was "more". More things. More money. More people around me. I was dependent on external factors to feel whole, but the work to feel whole starts internally. To be patient. Kind - even when you think something or someone is undeserving. To be open. Generous. Non-judgmental. Humble. And to be OK with change – especially when things aren’t going your way. That’s the woman I strive to be.

What I’ve learnt is that you’ll never be able to be truly happy unless you know how to be happy with yourself. Self-love is the foundation. You’ll continue to search for happiness and peace in other things and people but you’ll be constantly unsatisfied long term. The work starts with you first.

This is my personal journey of growth, what has your journey been like? Share below with the Crown + Bliss community.