April 27, 2012 - submitted by Gutty, Brazil

My life has changed so much in the past 10 years that sometimes I feel kind of lost. I'm divorced since 2004, have a 9 years old girl and my business is ok but I feel empty and need to make a change in my life but how to change your soul in the way that you can be happy every moment? Thank you in advance. Gutty, Brazil.

The Oracle replies:

Many of us do change Gutty and if we don't, our circumstances can and do. I've experienced many things that have led to life change; some good, some not so good. Whatever those experiences it's how I choose to deal with them that ultimately dictates whether I'm happy or not.
What would make you happy? That's a very important question.
Getting married, having a child, running a business and getting divorced are all big things to deal with so I'm not surprised you're feeling lost! I don't have kids but I'd imagine that becoming a parent might lead to feeling a loss of self because they become the focus of your life rather than you. I can see why everything changes when you have children. Especially for you having been a single parent for most of your daughter's life.
Life is short and it's important to get what you want from it. It may be you feel detached from friends or family. I would think running your home and business is taking up a lot of your time. Try taking some time for yourself to do fun things that YOU want to do. You could join a group or club of something you like or are interested in. It'd be good to have something outside of work and the home.
It can be an exciting prospect not knowing what the future holds whilst having a say in that future - the future you want.
You can make it what you want if you set your mind to it. Ask yourself what you'd like to be, where you'd like to be and how you'd like your life to be. Visualize it. What changes would you like to see and then work out a plan of how to make that happen. Start with small steps.
Surround yourself with things that make you feel happy. Corny as it sounds, have happy thoughts. Negativity breeds negativity.
I'm hoping that you're not feeling lonely. You don't mention if you're single - I am assuming you are - you don't need a man to make you happy or take away the empty feeling. That will come from you filling it with happiness.
There are so many books to motivate and inspire people these days. If you find the right one for you, that could be the key to change.
I'm a qualified Life Coach so know all about setting goals and achieving them. Trust me, once you know what you want, it will be easier to work on getting it.
It's your life Gutty and although you have a responsibility to your child and business, you have a greater one to yourself. Work out what will fill the void and then fill it!
Over to you.

No one can tell you how to be happy. You have to find out by yourself. Take your time and find out your real passions, discover yourself again and consider things in a positive way. However, there is a little tip for you: spend time with people who make you laugh a lot and listen to Coldplay for god's sake!
Janine, Germany.

It is almost in our nature to get stuck in these little ruts. The best thing I can tell you is that your life is manifested entirely from your thoughts and focuses. Focus on things you are grateful for, whether it be your daughter, your achievements, ect. Focus on what you want in the future, write it down, read that every morning when you wake up, and when you go back to sleep. Make those positive thoughts your only way of living. If you do this, something great will happen, I swear to it! The only reason it won't is because you won't let it. Good luck! And hey if that doesn't work just listen to more Coldplay, that works too. Sean.

I think no one is able to feel happy every moment of his or her life. My experience is that the periods of sadness will help you to experience and appreciate the periods of happiness. To get rid of your feelings of emptiness, you could try to enjoy the small things in life. For example your daughter, a long walk, night out with friends or simply how your bed feels after a long workday. If you take a moment to appreciate the little good things in your life, you will be able to feel happier. Furthermore, maybe you could try to find out what you really want in life. Make your own goals and missions, and accomplish them. Take small steps, those should give you the feeling of happiness and success. Good luck, Renske.

Philosophers have always claimed that change is the only constant in life. But even lay people acknowledge that all around the world, people experience change in their life.
Yet, change is not necessarily a bad thing. Although it may be difficult to realise, there is a flip-side to most situations.
A common way to bring happiness is to discover your passions, talents and joys. Some ways to do this may include starting a hobby, joining a group or becoming involved in the community. Also, don't underestimate the amount of joy friends (new or old), family and pets can bring into your life.
It has also been proven that people derive a sense of purpose and satisfaction from helping others. There are a million ways to do this, ranging from one or two random acts of kindness to formal volunteering networks.
A good activity to focus the mind on being positive is to take some time every few days to reflect. In this time, think about the things that you are grateful for in your life. Next, think of the moments in your life when you were happy. Next, dwell on the difficult or sad moments in your life and reflect upon how these experiences made you stronger and what you learned from them. It is difficult to begin this process, but it becomes easier the more often you do it. In the end, don't forget to take the time to relax, pamper and refresh yourself.

Gutty, I find when people are raising their children they are pretty much numb. There is so much to do and responsibility that we move kind of on autopilot. Our work can get repetitive and less exciting. More passion in our lives is needed. You love your daughter, but that is not the passion I'm talking about. It is doing things that give you joy and happiness. Making lists can help you discover more of what you really want; like a long list of things you love to do and another list of the things you loved to do as a child, what are the reoccurring themes in either or both? I've made lists of the things I like about my job/work, to help me stay focused on the positives and not on the negatives. We set our life's tone by what we focus on. When we focus on what we don't like, happiness is hard to find and depression can set in. Once you get an idea of what gets you excited, start adding that into your routine; like taking a class, painting a picture, walking in nature, reading for pleasure, whatever it is, give yourself permission for what I call "me time" and once you feel more fulfilled your attitude about everything else will be better. Big changes can be overwhelming, but just changing your attitude, focus, routine and adding more passion and maybe more charity into your life should have you glowing on the inside. Dawn.

Basing my opinion on personal experiences, I believe that the change in your life is precisely connected to your soul. I'm currently seeking that kind of happiness you're talking about. In order to obtain it, I'm trying to be in peace with myself.
That is, feeling comfortable with who I am, trying to change the things that I dislike about my personality and appearance as well. I'm somehow trying to find a balance. I believe that once you're OK with your very self, that's when you can truly start enjoying the company of others, and also the activities you take part in.
Boosting your confidence should really help. Once you feel confident you're ready to conquer the world and stand your ground, and therefore ENJOY LIFE AND BE HAPPY.
You're saying that your business is OK and that you have a precious child, so... we have to look for that something somewhere else.
Why don't you try out yoga, meditation, self help groups...?
Sometimes we need help to reach it. I believe that little by little you'll find it. Caro.

Since you have a nine year old child to support and your business is going well, you should not think about changing your career at all (you need financial stability for your daughter; she comes first). I would recommend you to think about the hobbies you had when you were younger or something you ever wanted to do and never had time to (e.g. taking classes of a foreign language, painting, learning to play an instrument or sing, etc). These things that we love, have passion for and make as a hobby are a big escape from reality and fill our souls. You should really consider it. You could also change your looks. Some people feel better and more confident when they change their appearance.
To be happy at every moment of your life is impossible. It's part of life: we have good and bad moments and that's inevitable. The only thing we can do regarding the bad moments is looking for the best way to surpass them and learn from that experience and from our and other people's mistakes. It's important for you to talk to your friends. They will always be there to give you their support no matter what and they could also help you to discover something that makes you feel better. Don't keep it to yourself and don't let your divorce to define who you are (you decide the kind of person you are) Love from Argentina. Noelia.

It's hard to always put joy and happiness into everything you do. It's even harder being happy every second of every day. I won't live your life for you, but I do think that while it might be hard, the first step to being happy every moment is acceptance. Not just of others, but of yourself as well. You are more than your actions, and so are other people. Once you accept yourself for who you are, and others for who they are (and who they will never be) it's much easier to put happiness into your actions and to be happy every day. Liam.

I don't think anyone can be happy all the time. However, you can be happy more often by doing certain things, new things. Pick up a hobby, or maybe just go out more. Its so easy to become bored of our lives if we're constantly doing the same things over and over again. You might also be feeling empty because of all the changes you've had to deal with, maybe you feel as if you've lost your identity through all of it. Rediscover the things you love to do and have fun with your life. Try to remember though, that no ones happy at every moment of their lives, its often the opposite. You can make the best of it though. Love, Darem.

When feeling lost, the best thing to do is to think about all the things that are going well in life. In your case, that means a daughter and a business that, as you said, is OK. Believe that the time will come when you'll feel happy and complete again. There are struggles in life for everybody. So I hope you don't feel alone, because you never are. The change you can make is to try and think positive. Tell yourself that you'll get past this, and if you start to truly believe that, I promise you that it will happen. Never give up and never lose hope. There is always something bright to find, no matter how dark it gets. Sincerely, Medina.

If you think on it, perhaps it's better to experience change than to remain static for 10 years! I understand that these changes may not be in your favor, but you are still presented with new opportunities. Stay positive! Variety is the spice of life, so try new things you wouldn't normally think about doing, even if you are hesitant. I'm sure most of your happiness comes from your daugther, so spend time with her and embrace new experiences with her. Plan a small trip or special dinner each week so you have something to look forward to every day you wake up. Take photographs every time you go somewhere new and make a photo album to smile back on your memories. It's the small things in life that keep us from feeling overwhelmed, so everytime you laugh or smile, remember you are truly happy. Warm regards, Blake.

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