Common Assumptions: True or False? – “Happiness is a choice”, “You are happy if you make up your mind to be happy”, “Hard work plus success will bring you the happiness.”
I wonder: If happiness is a choice, why can’t we all decide to be happy? Why can we all just make our minds to be happy and stay happy? Why is it that others have worked hard, and are successful but not happy? – Because any of these is not easy, and not that practical! With our brains focusing on so many negative things in this fast-paced world, and with our go go go mentality, intentional living and paradigm shifts take advantage.
Let’ begin with a story I read as told by an ancient legend:
Once upon a time, some wise men got upset when mankind started abusing their wisdom in the quest of finding the elements of happiness, success, and purpose. Therefore, a decision was made by the council of the wise to hide the secret of these elements where no one would find. The first group of the wise men suggested, “Let’s hide the secret underneath the earth.” The other groups said, “No, people will dig the earth and find it.” The second group said, “Let’s wrap the secret and throw it down into the deep ocean.” But another group replied, “No, people will invent technology to dive deep down to the bottom of the ocean, and find the wrapped secret.” The third group said, “Okay, we have two wonderful ideas. We can hide it on the highest mountain, or we can hang it in space where no one can reach.” The other groups thought about it and said, “No, no, no! People can spend an enormous amount of time to climb the highest mountains and invent higher technology to go into space to grab the secret.” As they all were thinking what next to do, they suddenly got a unanimous idea: “Let’s hide the secret of true happiness, joy, and meaningful life inside of each individual, and they will not think to look for it there.”
This decision was probably made because it is known that humans tend to have unsatisfying behaviors, and wanting more, transcending the good, the better, and the best. It is therefore reflected today that we individuals have been running and continue to run to places while digging, diving deep, climbing, and inventing sophisticated technologies to make things easier and faster as we eagerly search for happiness, success, and purpose, which will already have within us.
From childhood, we have been told that our hard work gives us success which will then give us happiness. On the contrary, research upon research has shown that it’s our happiness that makes us work harder and be successful. The Harvard Business Review reports that happy people are over 30% more productive, they get over 30 % higher sales and are 3 times more creative. Research by a psychology professor Sonja Lyubomirsky shows that 10% of our happiness is based on our life circumstance, and 90% is based on how we perceive the world and react to what happens around us.
Therefore, when we become happy first, we can do our best work, and eventually leads to success.
What is so common but we often don’t realize is that we profoundly shift our focus and energy outwardly in our desperate search for answers to discovering our happiness, purpose, potential, and success. So, where does it all come from? – success, happiness, and purpose-driven life. It comes from WITHIN our very selves! The work begins within us and completes in us and results are produced on the outside. The inside-out approach, which focuses on ethics relating to our characters and identity provides firm roots from which our outward appearance, personality ethics, social interactions, and public image are developed.
Knowing: Know that you have what it takes to lead your own life. As you continue the journey of unleashing your wow life and those wow moments, be inspired and excited about the fact that you possess the main ingredients, and all of the abilities that you need to be happy, to succeed, and to live a purpose-driven life. Also, know that you possess something equally important: the responsibility to grow your potential. You can decide to step up with audacious faith to fully realize your unique potential and abilities or you can allow fear of the uncertainties and experiences of the past to keep those potential buried.
Dr. Henry Cloud said, “One of the worst things you can die with is potential. Potential is something to be realized, not guarded or protected.” Therefore, I encourage you to wake up, shake off and take off to reach for those dreams, grasp them and take actionable steps to start digging up and investing your full potential to gain hold of your happiness, success, and life purpose.
Taking Action: Knowledge can make a difference, but converting that knowledge into action makes all the difference. It’s about turning solutions, and knowledge into actions so that they can move from little value and be of greater and rewarding value. The adage, “knowledge is power” can be partially true. Andrew Carnegie said, “Knowledge is potential power. It only becomes power when is expressed in terms of definite action. Applied knowledge is power!” Therefore, it’s a matter of translating the knowledge and solution you have about the true origin of your happiness, your potential, success, and purpose into actions.
Here is a simple riddle: With two birds sitting on a branch, and one decides to fly away, how many are left sitting there?
Answer to the riddle: Two birds are left on the branch. Because deciding to do something doesn’t mean it’s done.
Let your learning transcends knowledge, and springs into action to produce timely & needed leadership, transformation, and excellence at all levels. It’s one thing to know that you possess the potential to be happy, succeed, and realize your purpose. It’s another thing to decide to go after them. The change happens when you take action and be intentional! Take Action Now to start cultivating and nurturing your happiness for a successful and purpose-driven life.
There is no doubt that the word “happiness” is important to so many people. A simple word search on the internet will show that almost a million people search every month about how to be happy and stay happy. Multiple Studies have constantly shown the importance of happiness in our lives, including our success, relationships, wellbeing, career, and life expectancy.
Our views as individuals on the “state of happiness” are different when it comes to what makes us happy, how we become happy, and when we feel happy. In this sense, our definition of happiness presents some biases about our responses to the what, how, and when questions. Regardless of our varied individual responses to these questions, we want to be happy so that we can feel good, we can feel whole, we can feel relaxed and enjoy life, we can be in the company of happy people because people tend to attract toward those that can smile, laugh, feeling happy, joyful, and thoughtful.
However, expect and accept that happiness is not an endless state of being or a stable mind condition forever. Just like our emotional states fluctuate so our happiness states have the flexibility to be stable and unstable over time. Positive Psychology talks about Hedonistic and Eudaemonic forms of happiness.
Hedonistic happiness has to do with a short-term state of being happy. It involves taking pleasure, delight, and enjoyment in our sensational and exterior happenings, our physical senses, and our psychological mood. Pleasure is contingent upon time, object, place, and it changes according to the exterior situations. For example, we remain happy once the music is playing, once we have a job, once we have a bigger space, once things are going on well, and once people like us. On the other hand, eudaemonic happiness is experienced at a deeper level. It comes in when people pursue things of purpose and value in their lives which will bring happy feelings as a by-product, and this form of happiness originates from within ourselves. This is a more fulfilling form of happiness in the long term since it is experienced internally through our minds, love, generosity, and compassion.
In the book of joy, the Dalai Lama explains, “looking at today’s materialistic life, people are concerned mainly with sensory experiences. As a result, their satisfaction is very limited and brief, since their experience of happiness is dependent on external stimuli.” Matthieu Ricard, who has been referred to as one of the happiest people on earth explains that true form of happiness comes from within our minds with a deep sense of serenity, inner strength, freedom, conditions, and fulfillment. He referred to true happiness as a state that underlies all the emotional states, and all the joys of sorrows that come along.
This means that a happy life is then not about circumventing tough times, but to be able to cope with difficulty and hardship as you productively respond with your attitude and actions and become wiser and get even happier in the process.
Stay with me on this journey for sensational blog posts on life inspiration, and intriguing leadership contents. we will go through actionable steps, which I call “peeling off the layers” to unleash your wow life and moments at all levels. True life for happiness, success, and purpose comes from the inside out.