Five Keys to Being Happy

Did you notice the title?

It doesn’t say Five keys to happiness, it says Five keys to Being happy. We are not talking about some metaphysical or abstract concept called happiness. We are going to talk about being happy.

BE is a verb. It implies action. Being is the continuous form of the the verb, so we’re not talking about a one time deal either. It is a continuous process. But first let’s get that metaphysical concept of happiness out of the way, so we are not distracted by it.

My definition: Happiness is a state of BEING.

You can either be happy not be happy. There is no middle ground. Either you are or you’re not.

There are two ways you can be happy. The first, and the easiest way to do it, is to just make a decision to be happy. The second, less easier way is to first BECOME happy, and then stay happy. (There are no difficult ways of being happy)

While making a decision to be happy is the easiest way to do it, most of us find it very difficult because we are not taught to be decisive. We are told to get second opinions and to check the alternatives and always be suspicious of our decisions, because we could possibly make a mistake, and so forth. Yes, all of that has merit, but when it comes to deciding to be happy, you can never make a mistake. So if you are prone to indecisiveness, you’d have to use the second, less easier method to first get there, and then stay there.

In order to become something, anything, you must develop habits that are conducive to being what you want to be. The same principle applies to becoming happy. You must develop the habits that are conducive to being Happy.

1. Accept what IS. We live in a cause and effect Universe. What IS is a result of individual and collective causes. You cannot change it. That doesn’t mean you have to condone or like everything that is. As a matter of fact, if there is something that you don’t like, know that you have the power to cause it to change, but the effect of that cause will be in the future, be that a microsecond, or a millennium or an eon. Accepting what IS, empowers you, and that is conducive to being happy.

Lord! Grant me the courage to change the things I can, The serenity to accept the things I can’t, and
The wisdom to know the difference.

2. Know that everything always works out. Surrender to life knowing that in the end it will all work out for the best. This principle was confirmed for me and my family a few years back when we were returning home from a winter vacation in Oklahoma.

The roads were snow covered, and we saw numerous vehicles in the ditches and on the side of the road as we drove along on Interstate 35. My wife asked, “What would we do if we end up like that?”

I replied, “First of all, I don’t believe that we will, but if anything was to happen, it will never be a situation that we cannot handle.”

Needless to say, a little while later our van went into a spin on a thin patch of ice and when we finally stopped, we were parked in the median between the southbound and northbound lanes. As we were coming to a stop, from the corner of my eye, I saw a pick up truck from the other side making a U-turn into the median, and he was behind us before we knew it. I tried to drive out, but we were stuck. The man with the pick up truck pulled us out and refused to accept any money for doing so.

Life is meant to be easy; if it’s not, you’re doing it wrong. ~ Rasheed Hooda

3. Stay connected and centered. Happy people are always spiritually connected and centered. I was fortunate enough to be brought up in an environment that fostered and nurtured spiritual connection. We got up early every morning to attend pre-dawn prayer services, and we attended prayers services every evening. Today, I still do my best to attend pre-dawn services. I can feel the difference throughout the day when I miss them. Though I don’t attend the evening services regularly, I say my prayers before going to sleep. My children have learned the same principle of opening and closing the day with prayers, though they do not attend the daily services.

Gratitude is the best way to connect with the Divine. Happy people are grateful for everything in life. They realize that Life itself is a gift and are grateful for it. Gratitude takes many forms. Tithing, charity or simply appreciation for life are all form of gratitude and will keep you connected and centered.

Gratitude is the power line to the Universe. Make sure you are plugged in. ~ Croz from Oz

4. Nourish your mind and body. Stop! Take a moment to check in with yourself. How do you feel right now? Chances are that you’re feeling good. That maybe because you have been nourishing your mind for the past few minutes with this positive and life affirming article. Happy people keep their minds filled with life affirming thoughts and messages. Read books and articles that make you feel positive and vibrant. Associate with people who lift you up, rather than bring you down. Make time pray and meditate. When you pray, you are talking to the Divine. When you meditate you are allowing the Divine to talk to you.

Your body is the temple of your soul, or at the least, the space you occupy while you are on this earthly journey. Make sure it is well taken care of. In order to maintain your body in an optimal operating condition, you must provide it with good nutrition and ample physical activity.

I am not a health professional, so I am not qualified to give you health advice, but I’ll share with you what works for me. I have learned, over the years, to listen to my body. It has an inherent, built in intelligence that is capable of sustaining it. I tune into this intelligence by paying attention to the signals my body sends me. I know when I have had too much of a good thing, or not enough of it. In first case I feel miserable, in the latter, I feel weak and drained. I let the body guide me to the right solution. Sometimes it is physical activity, other times it is a particular food or simply drinking more water. Let your talk to you, it won’t lead you astray.

My mind, body and spirit are the most powerful things in this Universe. And becasue of this blessed gift, I can overcome anything ~ Jaferaly Hooda

5. .Do what makes you happy. Take Action. If the pursuit of happiness is making you stressed and miserable, there is something wrong with what you’re doing. Quit it! The goal of every activity is to create joy. If it is not doing that, stop it.

BEING HAPPY is a moment by moment undertaking. Now is all you’ve got; and if you’re not happy NOW, then I can assure you that whatever it is that you’re doing now, will not make you happy in the future.

Evaluate your business and career. Is it something that invigorates you or something that drains you. The answer will determine your next action if you truly want to be happy.

Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind! ~ Dr. Seuss

Life is too short. Live with Passion and Purpose. And don’t settle for anything less than Happiness if you want a fulfilling life. You deserve it.

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(c) 2009 Rasheed Hooda aka CoachHappiness

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Surrender

As I sit down with the title on top of the page to write about surrender, the first thought that crosses my mind is, “surrender is the hardest thing to do” contradicted by another thought immediately, “It is the easiest thing to do.”

So, I got paralyzed with the conflicting ideas, struggling about how to get started with the essay. I decided to just start expressing this inner conflict to start out the essay and see where it takes me. I simply surrendered and took the first step. Surrender is easy.

But some times we get so hung up on knowing the outcome, being perfect, and all that jive, that we get paralyzed by it, and surrender becomes the hardest of things. And so it is with everything in life.

When we become clear on what it is that we want, what we desire, the next thing to do is surrender; surrender to a power that is greater than us, a power that knows the solution to our desired outcome; and let that power guide us to the first step we must take to get moving.

While visualizing and daydreaming has its purpose, and allows us the peace and contentment of knowing when we have come to the place that we desired at the onset, we must act so that we may experience that outcome.

Some people just sit there visualizing all day and never take action, or at least not the correct or effective action because they are paralyzed by the fear of taking the wrong action. Others jump right into taking action, believing that any action is better than no action and that by acting they will get to where they want to go. Only trouble is that they don’t have a clear enough picture to know when they get there, so they keep on going, never stopping to enjoy the benefit of their actions.

The solution is obviously in the balance between the two, in harmonizing your thoughts and actions. One without the other is futile. An old Japanese proverb sums it all up.

Vision without action is a daydream. Action without vision is a nightmare.

Are you happy making a living?

I was having a discussion with a friend last night on the topic above. He was not pleased that he had to do the work he did. He likes writing but he wasn’t happy with the fact that he was having to write for a living.

I told him that my philosophy was simple: You don’t have to do anything you don’t want to.

He replied, “Which works if you’re willing to be poor and let others feed you.” I asked him to challenge that belief, to which he said no.

Do you believe that you have to make a living? and if you didn’t you would remain poor?

Here is another question for you. What is a belief?

Belief is an opinion that you have accepted as truth. But do you ever stop and ask yourself if it really is the truth?

I challenge you to do so. Is the statement “We all have to make a living” a truth or an opinion?

Now don’t get me wrong. Sure we need money to live a comfortable life and more money to live a luxurious life and even more to live a life of opulence. I am all for luxury and opulence. But does that mean you have to do something you don’t want to do?

My point is this; don’t just make a living, live a fulfilling life.

People who say they have to make a living would tell you that they have to do that so they can have the things they want in life, but they very seldom have more than bare necessities like paying the mortgage and utilities and putting the food on the table. When you’re focused on making a living, very seldom, if ever will you have time or money to live a life. I know this, because I’ve been there, and I’ve done that.

But, when I decided to stop making a living and start living a life of fulfillment, I started making more money while working less hours and improved my standard of living.

Sure it was a challenge in the beginning to stay focused on the new way of thinking, but today, a little over a year later, I am in a better place and my relations with my wife and children are better than they have been in years.

So what I am saying is this…

If you’re not happy doing what you do, why do it? After all, isn’t happiness the goal?