As an administrative assistant and the Director of First Impressions, I put on a smile every day. No matter what I am going through. Because to me, happiness is a choice.
We choose to be happy or we choose not to be happy. If you find yourself in an emotional state that you would rather not be in, you have the power to change it in an instant. Sustained levels of happiness come from the actions you take. You cannot simultaneously hold onto emotions such as fear, loathing, jealousy and hatred while also being grateful. If I am feeling stressed, anxious or just bummed out, the fastest way back to happiness is to focus on gratitude. I’ve always believed when you give to others with gratitude, you increase your level of happiness. The more you give and the more you tell people how much you appreciate them, the happier you will be!
My father taught me at an early age…simply pretend to be happy and soon you won’t be pretending. At the time, this really surprised me as I was sure he was wrong. How could you simply pretend to feel something that you didn’t authentically feel and then it become your reality? But, I tried it and sure enough, it works every time even to this day. If you choose to smile as you read this sentence, notice what happens to you. Keep your smile while you read this sentence too and notice that that you’ll almost want to laugh. Now go ahead and chuckle. Give yourself permission to laugh out loud! It‘s not easy sometimes, but try and fill your days with smiles and laughter and the feeling of happiness will grow inside of you.
I understand work, homelife, children, parents, etc. can be stressful at times. As a single Mom raising my three kids and working two jobs was stressful yet one of the absolute best accomplishments I’ve made. I look at my grown children today and think it was all worth it. I would do it all over again. And to top it off, I met the love of my life, my husband Harvey, and gained two more bonus children. Between the both of us we have six grandchildren and one more on the way.
As of this day I look back and smile because God has blessed me abundantly and each one of our kids have done well. I am not saying there haven’t been struggles because we have had many. But I do know happiness comes from your own actions and I try to take actions in life that sustain it. And most of all have fun! My kids will tell you what a fun and grateful Mom I was growing up and I hope I can continue reflecting this same sentiment to my grandbabies.
Jamie Bohannon is our Director of First Impressions working in our Tulsa headquarters and has been with Wallace Engineering since 2011. Jamie’s voice is the first voice you hear when calling our headquarters. In her spare time she’s a SW Tulsa Revitalization member, a Route 66 patriot committee member and has served as event chair for the American Lung Association’s Air Climb. Jamie and her husband Harvey have five children between the both of them (Missi, Braden, Drake, Brandon and Hunter). Her interests include camping, traveling, fishing, shopping, scrapbooking, playing ping pong and spending time with family and friends. She especially loves being a Gammy to her six (almost seven) grandchildren. You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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I concur! Thank you, Jamie!
Jamie, thanks for such a great article!