This was written a few days before my birthday which I celebrate this week.

As I turn another corner and my birthday draws near, I always do a ritual of journaling myIMG_20160727_150256 thoughts. The past few years have taught me so much, especially having recently survived a brutally painful car crash (thankfully with no visible scars). So it’s only fitting to share what I’ve learnt.

Life may be many things to different people, but at the end of the day it’s all about conditioning our minds to create the life where we are truly happy and at peace in all areas.

It’s so easy to get caught up in negativity, but once we practice guarding our thoughts and speaking positivity into our lives, we can truly live the life we always dreamt of no holds barred.

Many times we settle for mediocrity (at times without even realizing) when this shouldn’t be. Success and happiness are two relative factors which vary from person to person.

My idea of the two concepts may be very different from the man on the street or my grandmother two generations before me. The important thing is to know yourself inside out and stand by your ideals.

Once we have a firm grasp of who we are and what we want, not a soul can come along to shake our sense of worth or take away what is rightfully ours. Neither can anyone make us feel silly or inferior for wanting what we want and believing what we believe in.

Sometimes we may think that we are happy where we are, maybe because one fraction of our life brings us joy. But once we become exposed to the real joy of living, we may come to the realization that we are just scratching the surface of living our best life and finding true fulfillment and abundance.

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Our family and social life may be off the charts in terms of fulfillment and enjoyment, but our career may be lacking because we haven’t found our purpose. And the reverse can also be true, we may be at the top of our game at our job or business, however when we go home, we are unhappy because we have sacrificed one portion of our life for another. These imbalances may also impact our overall happiness, health, motivation and peace of mind.

I am no life coach or expert on living and my life is not perfect, but I have developed a sense of what I want and how to get it. I hardly ever give up or take no for an answer when it comes to accomplishing my goals and I always trust the temporary disappointments which most times lead to some place far greater.

My mistakes and perceived failures may sting for a moment, but I don’t dwell on them for too long, but instead seek the lessons and turn that whole train around in my favour without fail.

The secret lies in my unending faith in God, my personable disposition, my willingness to learn and freely share my talents and gifts to uplift and help others find their voice and maximize their full potential. My close network of friends also serve to keep me grounded.

These simple factors attract positive energy, people and situations to my life like clockwork and abundance seems to follow me wherever I go as doors open up like never before. Abundance again may mean different things to different people, but for me true abundance is measured by the quality of relationships, the richness of experiences and the lives that you touch.

While every day cannot be sunshine and daffodils and on the rough days where I’ve been known to complain, fuss and mope, the truly genuine people in my life see through the façade to my true character and depth.

The thing with character is that it attracts the truest of the true. Those people who see the real you. The ones that love you for you on your best days, your moody days, your sick days, your depressed days and your broke days too. The ones who would go to the end of the earth for you and the reverse is true.

Perfection is elusive for human beings, so when our character continuously attracts abundance to our lives, we know we’re on the right path and true success and happiness is on our doorstep.

With age comes wisdom and growth.

Carolyn K. Correia is the author of Thinking out Loud, How To Find Yourself & Claim What’s Yours and She Missed the Boat on Love. She is also a motivational speaker and communications consultant. For more visit: www.carolyncorreia.com

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