Life Lessons: Wilma Jones

Are you happy at the moment?

Yes, I am very happy. I understand that happiness is a choice I make each day. It took a long time and a lot of experience to have the courage to make the choice for happiness, even when things aren’t going exactly as I’d like. I am wise enough now to know how to impact positive change in my life simply through the power of my thoughts.

If you could go back and say anything to your 16-year-old self now – what would it be?

Focus more on your books and less on the boys. Most of them will not be worth your time.

What’s the most important thing you’ve learned this year?

That I am capable of doing anything I want if I am willing to do the work. It’s never too late.

What do you most want to achieve in the next 12 months?

To finish my next two books in the ‘Living Happier After’ series and expand my speaking opportunities. I have a new ebook coming in the fall and my second soft copy/Kindle book coming this winter or early spring. On the speaking front, I am working to present more keynotes and workshops to associations, divorce groups and divorce professionals as well as corporate groups interested in concrete skills to help employees overcome life challenges.

What’s your secret to happiness?

Having the courage to manage my thoughts. Most of the things I worry will happen never actually occur. The power of visualization and making sure I have all my energy focused in a congruent fashion – all focused on the positive outcome for me, has been a huge benefit to my happiness and success.

What one ritual or practice keeps you grounded?

Meditation. I have always been a spiritual, organized religion kind of person. Only in the past few years have I added meditation to my morning mix. I read somewhere that prayer is our opportunity to speak with God, but meditation is God’s opportunity to speak with us. Now I understand what that is all about.

What’s your biggest regret?

I don’t have regrets. Maya Angelou said it best, “When you know better, you do better.” I try very hard to learn the life lesson while I am in my mess, whatever it is, so I do not repeat it.

What’s the most important lesson you’ve taught your kid(s)?

Love hard. Love long. Love strong. But don’t be nobody’s fool. And treat people the way you want to be treated. That one goes without saying (or it should!).

What bad habit would you most like to change about yourself?

I talk too much. Sometimes I am the person waiting for you to finish so I can speak. Very unbecoming.

Aside from motherhood/fatherhood and marriage what are you most proud of in your life?

That I learned to overcome my fears and “Do it anyway.” That one change has made a huge difference in my happiness.

When were you happiest?

When I was 7 years old. I loved school and church, had a bunch of great friends, a huge family (I am the baby of seven siblings) and lots of extended family all close by that I saw almost everyday. I felt loved and cherished all the time.

What ten words best describe you?

Tall. Smart. Outspoken. Caring. Loyal. Articulate. Generous. Courageous. Leader. Passionate.

Wilma Jones lives in Arlington, VA with her teenage son. Her oldest son, a college student stops by with laundry and an empty stomach a few times a month. Wilma is a speaker and the author of “Living Happier After: 20 Women Talk About Life After Divorce.” Read more about her at LivingHappierAfter.com and check her out on Facebook (www.Facebook.com/LivingHappierAfter) and Twitter @LivingHappierAf. She can be reached at Wilma@LivingHappierAfter.com.