Book Giveaway and Excerpt: Creating Real Happiness A to Z

Dear KOM-ers!

We’re so happy to feature a new book giveaway!

Please enjoy this excerpt from “Creating Real Happiness” by Stephani Grace.

There are 2 ways to enter to win a FREE hard copy:

  1. Leave a comment below with your email address (so we can contact you)
  2. Email us at KOMWriting@gmail.com with the Subject: Creating Real Happiness A to Z  giveaway entry

The winner will be randomly selected on 5/2/22 and announced on our website and social media. *

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Creating Real Happiness A to Z will help you to cultivate awareness and presence so you can finally understand the truth that no matter your circumstances or conditioning, you are enough.

Inspired by working with clients in her thriving counseling practice, Stephani Grace has assembled key spiritual ideas and mindfulness practices that have proven to create lasting change. Wherever you are on your journey to self-love, this book and its simple, bite-sized A to Z format is designed to make it easy for you to discover real happiness and deepen your relationship with your true self.

The practices in this book will help you:

  • Accept and love yourself as you are.
  • Develop a healthy relationship with your body.
  • Find the right partner.
  • Feel empowered to change your life.
  • Find real peace in a chaotic world.

Excerpt Introduction:

I’m happy that you have found your way to this book and I’m honored to be a part of your spiritual journey. “Creating Real Happiness A to Z” is intended to help you move away from suffering and into your true nature, which is love and acceptance. I’ve assembled many ideas and practices in an A to Z format to help deepen your relationship with your true self. Each entry will help you learn ways to become more accepting and loving of yourself, ultimately leading you to the life you deserve – one that is free from suffering and full of love.

Most important, please keep in mind that nothing will change without practice. You will notice that there is a lot of repetition in this book – that is intentional. We need to hear the same things over and over to reprogram our thinking. If you are not currently happy then that means something in your life needs to change. Do the recommended exercises, practice one step or letter at a time and begin to create happiness. I promise that if you practice it will lead you straight to your own heart, to a new level of happy.

Excerpt: My Path to Self-Discovery and Acceptance 

My earliest memories are of being alone. I didn’t have parents who were capable of loving me. My biological father was an alcoholic and a drug addict, and when I was two years old, he decided to leave my mother. This caused her to flee to Las Vegas and abandon my two older sisters and me, leaving us with my father and his new girlfriend (who would soon become his wife). I only saw my mother briefly two different times during the next five years. My dad and his new wife were deep into their addictions, so I endured a life of neglect and a lack of love.

My two older sisters assumed the majority of my care, but they were not equipped to care for me as they were children themselves. They have told me that they were haunted by my being alone in my crib, wailing for human contact that first year. This set the stage for me in terms of learning that my needs were not important and that I was not worthy of love or care.

When my father’s marriage dissolved five years later, I was handed off to my biological mother, whom I didn’t know at all. Even though my stepmother hadn’t been available or capable of caring for me, she had been the only mother I had known. Having her walk out of my life without a second glance was horribly painful to me, and it was my second abandonment from a mother figure. I was heartbroken by that loss. I would soon come face to face with my mother’s mental illness, and the remainder of my childhood would be wrought with confusion, mental abuse, and still more neglect.

Coming from a childhood with adults who didn’t know how to love themselves, let alone others, especially their children, left me feeling unlovable and empty. I learned to get attention through achievement and by being really good. These elements would come to drive me. I would find myself looking for love in people who could not love me and who were not available. This would begin a cycle for me that would confirm my beliefs about myself: that my needs were not important and that I was unlovable.

Because I spent most of my time alone as a child, I became terrified of being alone. Ironically, in order to learn to love myself, I had to learn to be alone with myself. I did everything I could to avoid being alone. I got married young, and when my marriage failed, I took up drinking like it was my life’s purpose. It wasn’t until I let go of the drinking and began to truly spend time with myself that I realized that I had been afraid of who I was and that I didn’t really know myself at all. This is how my friendship with my true self began. Slowly, one step at a time, I grew to know and love myself. Through my self-discovery, I learned that I was indeed worthy of love and that my needs were the most important. The more I grew to love myself, the more

circumstances in my life changed for the better. Knowing my worth opened up opportunities that continued to confirm my worth. I quit attracting selfish, unavailable people and found myself surrounded by loving, available people. The funny thing is, these friends had always been there—I just didn’t see them in that way because my mindset was one of lack and of being unlovable. So even if people were willing to love me, I couldn’t accept it until I loved myself. Knowing my worth allowed things to come more easily for me. I no longer felt an urgency to control things, because I trusted that all the right steps and opportunities would be presented to me.

I endured a difficult childhood, but I wouldn’t change any of it. I believe that as humans we learn best through contrast. I needed to be born into a family that couldn’t love me so that I could learn to love myself and in return teach others to love. I have a belief that everything is intended to help us grow into our best, highest selves. In this way of thinking, nothing is trying to harm or punish us. I believe this is the truth because I have learned complete contentment, and I’m not sure I would have understood this love had I not experienced the opposite.

When I am working with people to help them find happiness, I am coming from a place of knowing. I know absolutely that it is possible for anyone to be truly happy, regardless of his or her circumstances or origin. The amazing thing about this is that it is all within our own control. It is all about our conditioning and our beliefs about ourselves and what we think we deserve. When we learn to shift these beliefs, we shift everything.

My entire life I’ve been drawn to spirituality, and I’ve been voraciously reading spiritual books nonstop since my late teens. In college I began researching resiliency, because I wanted to understand why some people could rise above adversity while others couldn’t. I think spirituality drew me to counseling. For me, it was a natural progression to want to share what I had learned in my own life. I had this deep knowing that it was possible for anyone to create what he or she wanted in his or her life, and I knew that adversity didn’t get to determine our life outcome. I had this burning desire to help people understand that adversity wasn’t a life sentence. I knew that this was my purpose and that this work was unavoidable for me.

In the work that I do, counseling and spirituality are synonymous. My goal in working with people is to help them learn to love and accept themselves. This is the goal of my work because I believe there is no other way to true happiness. No other way is sustainable; it is merely a fleeting mirage.

My clients are on a journey with me. As I am learning and discovering things in my own life, I weave these teachings into my counseling practice. Anything that I am utilizing in my practice comes from what has worked for me. I have deep empathy for those who suffer, and because I have learned how to create happiness out of struggle, I know that no one should settle for suffering. Therefore, I am tenacious in my patience with others in their search for happiness. I know it’s possible to create happiness, and I also know that it’s not difficult, although it seems impossible at times. Happiness is always available to us, always within our reach.

I want to help as many people as possible understand this process and to help them learn how to love themselves. I have been in practice for 20 years and have helped hundreds of people find happiness and live a more authentic life. With this book, I hope to reach a wider audience and share the tools that have helped not only me but also my clients. We all deserve to be happy. This is our birthright. Just think how things would shift in our world if we were all coming from a place of absolute self-love.

 

* By entering this contest, you give consent to Kind Over Matter to use your name for promotional purposes on our website and on all social media. 

 

NOTE: You can pre-order Stephani’s book at Hunt Publishing or on Amazon.

stephani grace
Stephani Grace is an author, motivational speaker, therapist and mindfulness expert. She has used self-exploration and mindfulness to overcome many adversities, including addiction and remnants of a traumatic upbringing, to live a more vital, inspired and fulfilling life. Through her personal inner work and with hundreds of her clients, Stephani knows that everyone can experience the freedom of living life as their true self, free from judgment and past conditioning to feel joy and happiness every day. She has made it her life’s mission to create helpful, accessible and easily applied tools to make wholehearted living possible for all people, everywhere. Stephani Grace is a state-licensed and board-certified professional counselor with 21 years of experience counseling individuals and couples using her unique blend of psychology and spirituality. She specializes in the treatment of adults struggling with anxiety, depression and weight loss. She received her BA in Psychology and MA in Counseling Psychology from Humboldt State University. She has a successful private practice in Portland, Oregon where she lives with her daughter Olivia, her do, Lulu, and her cats Birdie and Gus.

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