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Happiness

Three weeks ago you weren’t ready to hear the secret about happiness but as you have worked through breathe, appreciate, kindness, to useful you are now ready to hear it.

” Happiness, like almost everything, is a choice”. There are days when I find the secret hard to believe and I have been practicing and living it for 10 years. On those days the reminder is important. I can choose to be happy or choose to be miserable. People, circumstances, health, money have nothing to do with the choice. In fact the opposite might be truer. Happy people find themselves surrounded by happy people. Happy people discover all new forms of providence in their circumstances. Happy people are healthier. Happy people have more opportunity to acquire whatever they need through their initiative and efforts.

happiness quote

You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose. You’re on  your own, and you know what you know. And you are the guy who’ll decide where to go. ~ Dr Seuss

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Appreciation

Feeling blue this week, partly my mental illness and partly my selfishness, I realized that I won the lottery 60 years ago. I was born in a place where possibility, prosperity, passion and political certainty are present. I have enough of everything. ( when I get depressed, it is when I forget that). I can imagine and achieve nearly anything ( another sub 5 minute mile, the exception). My family is healthy, including my 87 year old mom and if it wasn’t there is fairly reliable treatment available. Roof over head (pretty fancy by world standards), food on the table (diverse, tasty, plentiful), daily learning and teaching opportunities (even when they are unwanted), a safe community, a community of faith ….

The abundance in my life, that is lavished upon me daily, is remarkable. And yet, I can wallow. How do you overcome the feelings of scarcity in so much abundance?

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Abundance

Abundance exists in any economy. If you understand that living an abundant life, one filled with enough and then some, then you can begin to understand that it can’t be measured merely by accumulation (or maybe not at all).

Stephen Covey said “People with a scarcity mentality tend to see everything in terms of win-lose. There is only so much; and if someone else has it, that means there will be less for me. The more principle-centered we become, the more we develop an abundance mentality, the more we are genuinely happy for the successes, well-being, achievements, recognition, and good fortune of other people. We believe their success adds to…rather than detracts from…our lives.”

What are the values in your principled-centered approach to the world? For me I celebrate some the questions that Wendy and Dave Ulrich pose in ” The Why of Work”.

1. Who am I? My abundance is built on a clear sense of who I am and why I use my strengths to strengthen others.

5. What challenges interest me? My abundance doesn’t exist in the absence of challenge but rather in how I respond to it.

7. What delights me? Simple pleasures like laughing (at ourselves), appreciating beauty, relishing excellence help me feel cared for, happy, and excited about life.

I am reflecting on;

3. Who do I travel with? My relationships, collegial, social and familial enhance my abundance when I honour the care, time and complexity it takes to sustain them well.

If you would like to read the complete list or follow up on their work check out the Ulrich’s work available on Amazon.