I don’t believe that happiness just comes to us, or that we simply ‘deserve to be happy’. We have to seek it.

I believe we have to make happy situations for our own selves.

Let me tell you the story of how I came to learn this.

Years ago, I had a hip reconstruction. I was in pain for a long time, unable to exercise. I had constant dark circles under my eyes, to the point where people would say ‘are you ok, what’s wrong with your eyes?’

I developed a friendship and mentorship at this time with my treating doctor, Dr June Canavan, a leading Sports Medicine practitioner in Australia and highly sought after overseas.

She asked me if I wanted to scrub in with her the next day on 5 knee surgeries. I was over the moon! She also prescribed me a different medication for the pain.

One thing I should mention is that I am NOT, and NEVER have been a morning person. That night, I set  my alarm to the dreaded hour of 4am. I was like a small child on christmas eve and couldn’t sleep with excitement. The following morning the dreaded alarm went off, but instead of whining and complaining I bound out of bed, whacked on my clothes and was out the door in a flash.

Looking in the car mirror, I noticed that my skin was brighter and my eye circles had almost gone, despite only getting about 1 hour of sleep. I was pumped with miraculous and uncharacteristic energy.

When I met Dr Canavan at the hospital, ready for the exciting day of watching 5 knee surgeries, she asked me if the medication she had prescribed had helped with the pain. I told her that it had miraculously cured my under eye circles and given me loads of energy this morning.

She laughed, smiled a big smile and told me “That is not the medication. There is no way it would have any effect like that”.

“The dark circles and the bouncy energy are because you are doing something you WANT to do” she explained.

I was confused. I felt SO different. Energy I hadn’t had in such a long time, ready to face the day despite mornings not being my thing.

“If you choose something exciting to do each day Tara” she said, “You will always have energy, you will never have dark under eye circles. But, you have to go and seek it,those exciting things that make you jump out of bed. Those opportunities won’t just come to you.”

Dr June Canavan has since passed away. Only in her 50’s, she was flying to Papua New Guinea to raise money for charity walking the Kakoda Trail. Sadly, her plane never made it to the trail.

Her spirit and her messages live on for me and the numerous other people that she inspired, motivated and treated during her years as a doctor.

I often think of her, and when I feel unhappy, low on energy or I have dark circles, I hear her voice and I get my butt out there and make some happiness medicine for myself.

I hope this inspires you the way she has inspired me.


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10 thoughts on “Seeking Happiness – The Ultimate Medicine

  1. Kirsten (Miss Foodie) says:

    Great story!!! I too have the exact same outlook on life. When I was 22 years old I had a horrific car accident that had me semi-parlized for 10 months. I went through the hate and angry stage at first; then one morning as I peered out my hospital window overlooking the Gold Coast hinterland I told myself. “You’re alive aren’t you! Then be grateful that you are damn it! And be grateful that you have an amazing support network” I never looked back and I had the strength to recover and live the rest of my life. Life always has it’s down moments, we need them so we understand and truly appreciate the magic moments 🙂

  2. Julie says:

    I cannot agree with this anymore, and I would like to thank you for reminding me!

    Over the Winter period (I live in Glasgow, but am originally from Norway – it gets very dark at this time of the year!) it is easy to catch yourself stuck in a rut, forgetting to focus on yourself and what you have to do rather than what you WANT to do. Everyone should think of a little something each day to do that are purely down to what’s best for you, whether it be trating yourself to a relaxing half hour breakfast instead of rushing out, meeting a friendly face you have been meaning to catch up with or anything else that is joyful and not a “necessity”, because in the end – it is necessary to enJoy life, not just live it 🙂 x

  3. Bibi @ Veggie Runners says:

    This is a wonderful post. I’m currently taking a 30 day happiness challenge, with meditiation and trying to do acts of kindness each day. When I first started I thought I was going to bankrupt myself ‘doing nice things’ because the only things I could think of were buying flowers etc, but now that I’m more settled in, I realise that smaller acts of kindness are almost more meaningful and certainly have a more powerful effect on my own happiness.

    • thenutritionguruandthechef says:

      So very true. Sometimes we have in ou mind that being nice, helping people or being kind will cost us either money, or will be draining on us emotionally. Rather, it’s the opposite. Kindness is free and gives us energy, motivation an inspiration

  4. Pingback: Seeking Happiness – The Ultimate Medicine | The Nutrition Guru and the Chef

  5. Karen says:

    Love this! Being responsible for your own happiness – understanding that YOU are in control of it – gives you so much real freedom regardless of your circumstances!

    Is this something that can be taught to our kids? Or do they just have to learn it through their own situations?!?

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