Hands Happily Full

By: Kathy Gates

Having your hands full is one thing. Having them Happily full is entirely another.

“But you can’t just do what you “want to” all day long”, my friend argued.

I think you can. If you’ll stick with me here for a moment, and make just a little shift in your perspective, I’ll explain. I think it depends on how you view your “haveto’s” and “want tos”.

Think back to that first baby, the first few weeks at home. No matter how tired you were, whatever he needed at any time of day or night it was your pure pleasure to make him happy and safe and comfortable. (If a baby doesn’t ring a bell, think about when you were in college, or some other time when you worked hard and long but still felt good about it.)

It’s the connotation of “haveto” that makes me tired just to say it. Notice how your voice drops, when you say out loud, “I haveta go workout.” It implies that I won’t be happy while I’m doing it. It implies that I’m doing something I don’t want to do. It implies that I will procrastinate. It

But “havetos” are not necessarily the bad things that we make them out to be. “Havetos” can be your friends, if you are using them in a way that works FOR you instead of against you.

Pardon me while I put on my rose colored glasses, but YES, they can!

“Havetos” relate to what you want in your life. I got up from my computer this morning, and mumbled “I have to go water the flowers.” Now that’s not exactly the truth. I do have options:
1. Let them die.
2. Install an automatic watering system.
3. Pay someone else to do it for me.
4. Delegate the job to someone else in the household.
5. Don’t plant flowers in the first place.

My point is that IF I want flowers, I may “have to” water them, but that is part of the bigger picture. It’s also part of my choice to have the flowers.

You might say “I have to go buy groceries”, or “I have to take out the trash”, or “I have to brush my teeth”. Those may not be things that are particularly enjoyable to you, but you don’t really *haveto* do any of them. You may alienate members of your family, coworkers, or friends if you don’t do them. But then -- that’s the bigger picture, isn’t it? The “haveto” is a direct reflection of what you want.

Are you hands full of “havetos” that you aren’t particularly happy about? If you are chasing things that are important to other people but aren’t important to you, then they probably are real ‘havetos”.

But you hands may also be full of “havetos” that are actually “want-tos”, just in disguise? .

Instead, look at the bigger picture, instead of just the “have to” itself. For example, “I have to do the breakfast dishes (or running errands, or paying bills or mow the lawn).” Yes, I have to, IF I want a clean sink, and IF I want clean dishes to eat off of again. But what if I consider this my contribution to a happy household. I consider it a role or responsibility that I negotiated, and that I accept as part of obtaining my ultimate goal -- having a happy, comfortable family life.

“Have-tos” are a part of life – but instead of looking at them as drudgery, or work, or struggle, remember to consider the bigger picture. It will make the Have-Tos in your life a whole lot easier. And you’ll be able to see your hands as Happily Full.

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Life Coach Kathy Gates specializes in helping people who are ready to create a more joyful and meaningful lifestyle. Her Specialty Coaching Programs, www.reallifecoach.com/Happiness.htm”>Crash Course To A Happier Life help define and create a life you love. Visit Today!

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