Science almost always provides a great place to begin any SEARCH. Happiness is no exception to the rule… As it turns out, happiness has been studied extensively and believe it or not, there are even those who actually specialize in happiness research.
In my effort to provide the very best article possible for the readers of FeelingSuccess, I reached out to one such happiness researcher who agreed to collaborate with me on the creation of this Article. Andy Proctor studies happiness. He is a happiness researcher. Andy can be found at www.andrewscotproctor.com.
I also reached out to Kristen Truempy from the Positive Psychology Podcast, strengthsphoenix.com – who graciously provided me with some powerfully insightful information on “fakery” and how what is sometimes referred to as “fake” happiness can actually lead to the development of “real” happiness.
My third collaborator is Patrick D. from TheGreatEverything.com who left the comforts of life as a Corporate Lawyer to pursue his DREAM.
And finally, my very dear friend, Executive Coach and Author of the newly released book SHIFT, Michael O’Brien or OB as he is known by his friends, lends his perspective on surviving a near death experience or NDE, to becoming the very best father, husband, mentor, and leader he could be… pelotoncc.net
The final piece of the Tapestry woven together in this article comes from the “Voices of Anchor.” I asked my social network to rise to this challenge and wow did they ever… Vivid details from those who granted me permission to share will be shared and to protect the anonymity of those who chose to share, but not be recognized, their responses will be reflected as pooled data. If you look at everything published by me (Bobby Kountz), to date on FeelingSuccess, you will see that it always begins with a quote. This article will be no different with the exception of this introduction you are reading now. I believe quotations have secrets to share that when uncovered, offer a window into another world, the world of deeper understanding. With that expressed, lets begin this journey down the happiness lane together with my interpretation of a couple of quotes.
Taking The Time To Truly Understand Happiness And Where It Comes From:
“Happiness is not a possession to be prized. It is a quality of thought, a state of mind.” -Daphne du Maurier
Daphne du Maurier was a British Novelist and Playwright. Sometimes less is more and that is the unique nature of this quote. Happiness is not something to be sought, it’s something we create with our own thoughts and actions.
I believe Dr. Wayne Dyer may have stated this best when he proclaimed to anyone who would listen “There is no way to happiness, happiness is the way.” This message came to him by way of Thich Nhat Hanh and is prominent throughout his body of work.
If we pause for just a moment and really take the time to consider what he meant when he made this bold proclamation, what we find is that happiness is at the core of everything. It’s inside, it’s not external, it never has been, and it never will be.
One of the most inspiring lessons I ever personally learned from Wayne Dyer was the lesson of the orange… When he was lecturing and discussing both happiness and intention, he would explain why he believed that what comes out of an orange when you squeeze it is orange juice, AND the REASON orange juice is what comes out is because, that’s what’s inside.
When we are “Squeezed” as human beings, when we are dealing with the pressure and stresses of life and we are squeezed, what comes out is what’s inside… If we are squeezed and we are angry, then anger comes out… If we are squeezed and we are fearful, then our fears will express themselves. If we are full of joy and gratitude and we are squeezed, the only thing that can come out is joy and gratitude, because that’s what’s inside.
If we are truly happy inside and we find ourselves squeezed by the demands of our work, or the stresses of needing to provide for our families, or the demands of the needs of others, or the tension often created when communication breaks down, no matter how intense the pressure, if we are happy inside, the only thing that can come out is happiness. Not because we are happy, but because that’s what’s inside.
Abraham Lincoln, who battled severe depression himself, may have actually said this best when he stated, “I have noticed that most people in this world are about as happy as they have made up their minds to be.” I believe he was including himself when he said “most people.”
Remember, we best teach that which we most need to learn. I was an angry young man and the early years of my youth were controlled by my emotions. It wasn’t until I began to study personal development and was exposed to the ideas of Jim Rohn that I truly began to understand myself.
My Psychology Professor Ray Rich, who also happened to teach the History of Rock N Roll, (Best Class I Ever Took BTW), suggested I read a book by Wayne Dyer titled: Pulling Your Own Strings. That book changed my life and I have been pulling my own strings ever since.
With Purpose And Conviction, Happiness Comes Naturally Like The Shadow From The Sunshine:
“The height of your accomplishments will equal the depth of your convictions. Seek happiness for its own sake, and you will not find it; seek for purpose and happiness will follow as a shadow comes with the sunshine.” -William Scolavino
If we want to achieve our goals and dreams, we must evaluate our commitment to those desired outcomes. To do or create something special requires a certain kind of conviction. When we hold a fixed or firm belief about something, it is said that no clever argument, no persuasive set of facts or theory could ever impact our belief in the rightness of our position about a specific topic or idea.
Conviction is the absolute belief in your position in life, the products, services, or company you represent, and the belief that your solution or outcome is the very best one available period. This belief, this deep sense of conviction creates both confidence and passion. The depth of our conviction to our cause and the difference we are able to make, is directly proportional to our level of accomplishment.
When we have purpose and meaning driving our behaviors and actions, we become fully engaged in the process. What once appeared hard, suddenly seems easy. And resistance, well, resistance is relegated to the position it deserves. Resistance itself has no power or position. It’s merely a step in the process of accomplishment.
Resistance as a matter of fact, is welcomed by the well trained mind. For we know that on the other side of resistance, lies achievement. When we are actively engaged with direction and purpose, we nurture at first a subtle glow that develops over time into one of the purest forms of happiness. Happiness is derived from our right actions. We experience happiness when we know that what we are “DOING” makes a real difference.
Simply saying the words “I like my job, I love my work”(Something I Learned from Brian Tracy), can move us into the beginning stage of fulfillment which equates to happiness! If you are seeking sunshine and happiness, just remind yourself daily how much you enjoy your work! And for those not interested in happiness, simply utter the words I hate my job, this sucks, why is it so hard? Why are they so rude? Why won’t they make time for me? Don’t they get it? Or, or, or……why, why, why…? You see the difference right?
Empower yourself instead, be clear, be convicted to your products, services, and your cause! Choose Purpose, choose Passion, choose HAPPINESS, Experience success! The common theme shared by each of my collaborators in the writing of this article is passion. Andy, Kristen, Patrick, and Michael are filled with passion! Patrick used the word “delighted” to describe his willingness to contribute. Kristen, once she got started sharing she had a hard time stopping because her passion took over and some 35 minutes later I found myself with some of the most positive content I could have ever hoped for. And finally, Andy was sharing information with me well past the 10:00 o’clock hour in an effort to see I had everything I needed.
Patrick’s Insight From TheGreatEverything.com
Go to Patrick’s site and read anything written there and you will know you have found the writings of a man who is not only happy, but joyous as he brings everything he can find of value to his audience every day. My strongest recommendation is that you begin with the article titled: Just Another Monday? The article explains how Patrick and a nefarious character called “Marc” decided to simply walk away from the security and comfort of the corporate world to do what? Build a DREAM!!! I’ll say it again, happiness is found in PURPOSE.
Kristen Truempy from the Positive Psychology Podcast:
Kristen has been living her dream for years and demonstrated her Positive Psychology Prowess when she artistically broke down the idea of “Fake” Happiness or what she calls: “Fakery.” Kristen explained that people tend to think they understand what “Fake” means, but can’t provide a reflection of what that really means. The example she used to explain the concept was posting one photo (the best one) as a representation of (their real world) a world that looks “great” from the one photo, not the 99 others that didn’t get posted.
That one photo, actually is a part of the life of the person who posted it, so how could it be “Fake?” It’s not, it really happened. The next question then is what was the intent? Was the purpose to deceive, or to just show off the “best” part of their life? Here is the second and deeper part of the rub, who determines what is real or fake? Is it the viewer, is it perception, or is it some social media algorithm we never even considered? Is completely average stuff even popular? No, the algorithm will be “looking” for the exceptional or the extraordinary… Our “escape” comes from not having to stare at the same thing we are experiencing every day.
It appears that fakery is being created by everyone involved including every click that says I want more of “this” whatever “this” is… Now what about the benefits of fakery? Is it possible there might be some unexpected blessings or unplanned benefits? Could a recipe for “Fake Happiness” like capturing the ideal picture for Instagram lead to positive unintended benefits? Kristen says yes with an example to explain… When someone begins “hiking” as an example to capture the perfect “peak or summit” photo, they also experience the “REAL” benefits of the exercise required to capture the picture… The endorphin rush from reaching the summit is also “REAL.” And, what if the “ideal photo seeker” suddenly finds they actually enjoy hiking versus sitting on the couch or behind a computer on-line. The initial desire to portray a “specific lifestyle” has now culminated in a “REAL” experience and potentially “REAL” happiness. So then this further begs the question about what “REAL” is.
Andy Proctor From MoreHappy.org
Andy talks about Social Media, Happiness, and connection… How do we move a Social Media conversation to a deeper conversation and Connection? One of the ways that Andy highlights is taking the conversation off-line. Now this typically begins with a more intimate discussion involving some form of a private message or (PM) connection. Where this really begins to take shape is when the PM leads to a real life interaction and we get to meet the “human being” behind the Social Media face.
Andy shared a “real life” experience where he and his wife went to Jerusalem and not only met, but received a guided tour from a Rabi he met online. What is so remarkably fascinating about the story, is the two of them are from completely different “FAITHS.”
So here is the scenario: Two Strangers, Two different parts of the world, Two Different Faiths, creating a “TRUE CONNECTION” to come together at the Western Wall in Jerusalem, to honor their individual beliefs about, All That Is! And all of this came about as a result of what some might call a “FAKE” or virtual friendship that many don’t even see as “REAL” and certainly not having the potential for any kind of “REAL” Happiness. Andy’s call to action was simple: “Take it Off-Line” by finding a way to create a real, genuine, authentic connection. In other words, don’t stop, make it “REAL.”
The final piece of this Happiness equation, or this Happiness puzzle if you will, is what are the Happiness practices of those on Social Media who are creating happiness from within?
Greg Dickson – www.gregdickson.ca – from Heartfelt Life & Biz, uses a simple breathing practice to create “REAL” Joy and Happiness in his life. He uses what he calls the “Heart Breathing” technique to: in any moment breathe in, breathe out, and take pause… With the pause comes Presence, which leads to an exhale that equals Joy for him.
Just Jenafer, who is considered by almost everyone to be one of the most positive people on the Anchor Platform, shared where she believes joy comes from and also described in great detail the difference between Joy and Happiness for her. She referred to her favorite book by Kay Warren titled: Choose Joy, as the foundation of where her Joy comes from and like so many others, she attributes her Joy to her FAITH!
Michael O’Brien author of the newly released book SHIFT – michaelobrienshift.com – which explains his long journey back from near death, to what he now calls living the Joyous Life, said he “creates” Happiness by choosing to be Happy and doing things that Happy People do. He cited gratitude, playing the long game, and staying focused on his purpose as key factors for his happiness. Michael also attributes giving back to society as a key factor in his happiness practice and used the example of his book and how all of the profits go to World Bicycle Relief as an example.
Conclusion on Happiness:
Happiness is clearly an inside job. It is generally believed there is some kind of underlying predisposition for either more or less generalized happiness or a default mood setting. It was also acknowledged there are a number of tools and methods available to increase ones happiness experience. A simple Google search of happiness will give you access to more information than can probably be consumed in two lifetimes, because human beings long for this feeling.
My personal happiness practice begins and ends every day with GRATITUDE. The single most compelling difference in my life has come from Gratitude and my appreciation for everything that comes into my life from my deep and abiding connection with “The Universe” and all that is shared with me each and every day.
Author Bio: Bobby Kountz
Bobby‘s a Quote Enthusiast, an Intrapreneur, and an Aspiring Entrepreneur with a Uniquely Positive Perspective on Life. He’s a Writer and Aspiring Author and Inspirational Speaker, a Dedicated Volunteer, and Socially Conscious Change Maker. He can be found on Twitter @bobby_kountz or on anchor.fm/bobby-kountz