Create a Happy Life That's Sustainable
EDITOR’S NOTE: The latest from Mental Gymnastics’ contributor and Sow Darling CEO, Angelia Riggs. Check out the helpful links at the end of this post for more on the topic of creating your own reality!


As humans, we have been conditioned by media, politics, religion, or what have you. Right?! We all know this to some extent.


So with that said, I had been so conditioned to think that my job was “work”, and that it was a necessary means to an end. Every day the same faces, the same catty, drama-filled, stale back break rooms. I was in a bad mood from the second I woke up and it lasted the whole day…and that negative energy would just ripple to all my clients and those around me. I would come home and become super irritated with my wife, and it just affected me in such a way that I was always upset with life. What an unenjoyable way to live! *heavy sarcasm*


UNTIL, one day I got so fed up with constantly feeling miserable in my job and miserable in my home (and my home should be my escape in a sense, you know? My haven). How dare I incessantly bring this negativity around my wife, my pups, ultimately bringing their frequencies down.


So, like I was saying,  one day I woke up and decided that, that was it! I had to remember why I had started in this industry in the first place: FOR THE PEOPLE. For my love of the human race.  My thoughts became, “what if I were to focus on the person in my chair?”


The thought of cutting hair aside, after being in the industry for years, the quality of cut was there, which had become muscle memory at this point. What if I could alter my perception towards focusing on the person, and not the ol’ humdrum of a hair cut? How could I inspire them? How could I motivate them? How could I positively affect each and every man who sits in my chair this week? What was I doing besides wasting time focusing on the wrong line of sight? My vision had become so clear, I was finally seeing through the correct lens…and my perception changed.


Due to this brand new revelation, my reality began to change around me. I could not wait to go to work now, and was super stoked to come home and tell my wife Ash the amazing stories of how I was able to encourage or inflame someone with the passion to seek a new perception on life themselves.


A beautiful point that follows is this, that after I had changed my perception, everything around me in the world did too. All those grumpy guesses stopped coming to see me; instead, my schedule at work became booked up with the most genuine, kind, wise people I have ever met.  I was connected with men and women who have helped me grow spiritually, mentally, and emotionally. Since then, I have become one of the top in sales of services at my shop, as well as opened a small business this year! All because I decided to change my perception just a tad, and it ended up changing my entire reality.


I know I have only mentioned briefly of my wife, but she plays a huge role in the next point I want to make. We were both sitting on the couch at home, it was one of those evenings where we had no distractions on, just the sound of each other’s voices, and the excitement of where our conversation could possibly go. One of many things that I love about this incredible women is how she views the world. As an artist she sees  the world differently than anyone I have ever encountered in my life; her perception is highly enticing to me.


As I was talking with her, I mentioned how annoying it was for people like me who wear corrective lenses or glasses. I went on to discuss common issues and fears people with bad eyesight had to go through. With her having even more perfect vision than 20/20, I told her she would never be able to understand what it’s like to be nearly blind. She looked at me with those baby blues, and said something I will never forget – “but I do understand; when you’re not home, I put your glasses on and walk around. Because I love you so much, I want to see what you see, I want to view the world in the same way you do.” I suddenly teared up. First off, NO ONE has ever cared so much to want to know everything about me including something like my visibility of the world around me. Secondly, what an amazing concept to stop and think about.


The story of my experiences of perception seems so insignificant when we stop and look at the big picture here. What if we had the ability to put on each other’s perceptions, and finally have an understanding of each other and the world we live in? Can we not each day stop and change our perceptions to positively influence every person we come in contact with? Should this not be all of our goal?!


Take every chance you can to extend your line of sight, and empathize. If you take the titles we have put on each other – titles which condition us to think we are a certain way based on our race, religion, or gender – let’s back up and look at the world for what we really are: HUMAN. Take all the titles away, we all have a perception of hurt, pain, rejection, but we all know LOVE in some form. We have the chance to change our perceptions of love to ourselves, and each other.


Let’s not miss any more opportunities.
– Angelia Riggs


Angelia is the founder and CEO of Sow Darling (@sowdarling), a grower and provider of microgreens and other horticultural specialties in Austin, Texas. She also spends her time styling Austinites at Finley’s Barbershop, in downtown Austin. Follow her adventures! @max_isback


Check out what modern philosopher Jason Silva says about creating your own reality. And for more on how our thoughts define the world in which we live, check out Spirit Science for this video and others, to see how far the rabbit hole goes 🙂

About The Author

Mental Gymnastics is supported by a collection of like-minded individuals who have daily happiness practices. They will lend their expertise in various facets of life over time, sharing how and what they've implemented in their lives to achieve a sustainably happy life. Mental Gymnastics was started by Sean Yoon McDevitt, who holds a BA in History from the University of Georgia (while competing as a Division 1 Swimmer), an MBA from the University of Oregon, and an International Association of Meditation Instructors Membership.


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