Get Happy!

Just in case you ever feel its absence…know happiness always returns.

In my new book, Choosing the Life You Were Born to Live, I talk about the path to finding joy in your life. The Ancient Egyptians believed that when we die and are at the gates of heaven, we are asked two questions:

Have you found joy in your life?
Has your life brought joy to others?

I am a firm advocate in the belief that you cannot give what you do not have. If you are not happy (joyful) how can you possibly bring joy to others? If the gas tank on your car is empty, your car cannot take you anywhere, right? The same is true for you. If you are “empty,” you have nothing to give. So how do you “fill your tank?”

Stephen Covey has a great list of “12 things happy people do differently” that has been circulating on Facebook recently. I thought I would share it with you today as a reminder of some action steps you can take to be in a state of joy. (I embellished these a little with my own thoughts.)

1. Express gratitude – be thankful for what you have in your life instead of always focusing on what you do not have.
2. Cultivate optimism – your perception is your reality. Think optimistically and your world will follow.
3. Avoid comparing yourself to others – when you compare yourself to others, the nature of the human mind is that you will always be sure to come up short. The only person who you should be comparing yourself to is yourself in the past. Are you moving forward?
4. Practice random acts of kindness – help someone anonymously today.
5. Nurture social relationships – the nature of your relationships with others tells you a lot about the relationship you currently have with yourself. Our relationships are the things that matter most to us in the end. Make them worth it.
6. Develop strategies for coping – know what you need to do to stay centered. What are those things you do that make you feel better when your external world is in chaos?
7. Learn to forgive – open your heart and forgive others and yourself. Forgiveness is admitting that we are all alike in some way, shape and form.
8. Increase flow experiences – in other words, know your strengths. Do those things that “flow” and come easiest to you.
9. Savor life’s joys – stay in the present moment. Life is about the journey, not the end point.
10. Commit to your intentions – know what you want and commit to getting it. Direct your life in the direction YOU want instead of your life and external circumstances directing you.
11. Practice spirituality – recognize that life is bigger than you are and that there is a higher plan. Get in touch with your higher self and the potential that is deep inside. You know your gifts…practice them!
12. Take care of your body – your body houses the soul. It is your temple. Care for it, honor it and respect it.

Your happiness is your responsibility…no one else’s.

Happiness depends upon ourselves.” ~Aristotle


Chris Sopa is founder and owner of Chris Sopa International, Inc. You can learn more about her at Find her at, Twitter @ChrisSopa, LinkedIn, and .


“Choosing the Life You Were Born to Live:  How Changing Your Thoughts Will Change Your Life” by Chris Sopa published by Balboa Press.

Click here to purchase your copy.

How “Green” is Your Internal Environment?

Our ultimate freedom is the right and power to decide how anybody or anything outside ourselves will affect us“. ~Stephen Covey

When I was 7 years old my friend Tracie and I decided to play “barber shop” in my garage.  Tracie had long blonde hair down to her hips of which her mother doted and was very proud.  As we took turns sitting in the barber chair pretending to cut each other’s hair, I had a brilliant idea…what if I really cut Tracie’s hair; her mother loved it and then used me to cut Tracie’s hair from now on!  (Give me a break, I was 7 years old!)  So, I ran in the house, got a pair of scissors and cut away.  I mean CUT away…when I was done Tracie’s hair was shorter than Liza Minnelli’s on a bad hair day!

Needless to say, her mother hated it, screamed at me and I was scarred for life!  This one incident led me to develop a complex for being an extreme perfectionist on top of being terrified of displeasing somebody for fear they would yell at me.  Whenever we have a heart wrenching experience, it sets up our conditioning in a way that (if we allow) changes our behaviors when a similar experience occurs in the future.  I obviously did not go into Cosmetology after that experience, but I did allow other people and events from then on to affect my choices.  Due to the fear of being yelled at, not liked and shamed for not being “perfect,” I began to make my life choices based on what I thought other people expected of me.  What’s funny about this habit is that how do you ever really know what someone else is thinking and what they expect of you?  You don’t!

Don Miguel Ruiz has a wonderful little book entitled, The Four Agreements.”  The four agreements are simply:

  1. Don’t make assumptions
  2. Do your best at all times
  3. Be impeccable with your word
  4. Don’t take things personal

The hardest one of these agreements, in my opinion, is not taking things personally.  When you can finally realize that we each interpret an experience based on our own conditioning and perspective, then we can finally understand that it is ok to make decisions without external input.  What we choose in the moment of the experience is ok, regardless of if anyone else agrees.

We hear constantly about greening the environment; adding solar panels on your house to all natural materials to make every item in your house is the green way to do things.  I say we all green our internal environment.  Take an inventory of the toxic items and garbage in that brain of yours, get rid of the hazards and create your internal environment to be one that is protected from external toxins; mainly, what other people think.  Why do you value what someone else thinks so much over your own thoughts?  What makes their thoughts better than yours?  Just because their external environment looks green, does not mean they are internally green.  Ask any coach…we hear and see it all day long!  We are all great actors.

Refuse to let anyone talk you out of your own feelings.

Refuse to be reduced to someone else’s opinion of you.

And know in this moment and every moment going forward that you are worthy of being loved unconditionally…no matter what the external environment is telling you.

Unconditionally green,


Chris Sopa is founder and owner of Chris Sopa International, Inc.  You can learn more about her at  Find her at, Twitter @ChrisSopa, LinkedIn, and