Are You Sabotaging Your Own Joy?

Are You Sabotaging Your Own Joy? February 17, 2017

The most central teaching of A Course in Miracles is this:

If you want happiness, the only thing you have to change is your mind.

Photo courtesy of
Photo courtesy of


If you want health, the only thing you have to change is your mind.

If you want prosperity, the only thing you have to change is your mind.

If you want peace, the only thing you have to change is your mind.

If you want love, the only thing you have to change is your mind.

We’re taught to believe that if we’re unhappy, something outside of us is to blame. It may be our spouse, our job, the president or the gray skies of winter.

And so we focus on changing someone or something in our life. “If only my spouse would take out the trash, I could be happy.”

Then your spouse starts taking out the trash, and another criterion for happiness takes its place, keeping you in the same state of unhappiness as before.

This is the central purpose of the Course: to teach us that the quality of our life experience doesn’t depend on anyone or anything outside of us. In fact, everything we experience in life starts with our own mind.

Are we in a place of right-mindedness, remembering our connection to the Divine and listening to the Holy Spirit for direction?

Or have we allowed our fear-based mind to take over?

If you’re stuck in fear, it’s likely that you’re experiencing emotional and physical pain. You may feel pinched financially. You may feel the burden of conflicts in your relationships. You may get up in the morning with anxiety about what the day will bring.

If you’re in right-mindedness, you’ll feel light and unburdened. You’ll have faith that your needs will be met by a higher power. You’ll get up in the morning with gratitude and a sense of calm or anticipation.

The difference doesn’t come from personality type or life circumstances. The difference comes from what’s going on in our head. In the language of the Course, our natural state is to be in right-mindedness. If we’re not there, we’ve simply fallen asleep and allowed our ego to take over.

And that leads to the good news: right-mindedness and everything that comes with it is just a thought away. The only barrier to joy, health, prosperity and peace is a belief that you can’t have it.

You don’t have to change the world. You just have to change your thoughts about it.

Next week: Steps to make that happen.



Debra Engle is the author of The Only Little Prayer You Need and Let Your Spirit Guides Speak. You can find her on Facebook and at Listen to her podcasts at

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