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The Missing Piece December 17, 2008

Filed under: Life — sarah @ 1:40 pm

Have you ever tried putting a puzzle together, only to get to the end and discover that a piece is missing? You anxiously put the puzzle together, constantly examining the picture of your anticipated outcome, and a piece is missing. Piece by piece you work, only to realize that something is missing — and only one piece. One piece of the puzzle is missing, and that one piece makes a huge difference because the puzzle is incomplete. That missing piece changes not only the picture, but also the anticipated outcome. You search and search for that missing piece out of frustration because of your desire to complete the puzzle in its entirety.

If you find the piece — joy and a sense of accomplishment are felt. And if you do not find the missing piece — frustration and a sense of disappointment set in.

Much like a puzzle, we spend a great portion of our lives searching for that missing piece. Because of our desire to be whole and complete, we search for a missing piece of our lives, sometimes looking in the wrong place. We think that finding a mate and falling in love will make us complete. We think that finding that job with the eloquent sounding title will make us complete. We think that wealth alone will make us complete. But in the end, what we find is that nothing outside of us will make us complete. Wholeness comes only by finding the right piece to fill that void within.

The extraordinary thing about a puzzle is that nothing can fill that void except the piece that is made to go there. No matter how much you try to force another piece into that void, if it was not made to fit, it will not fit. So, the puzzle either remains incomplete, or you search until you find the missing piece.

Search until you find the missing piece. Is there a missing piece in your life that will make the authentic you come together? You have the choice to either search within to find the missing piece, or continue to live with a void. No person or thing can fill that void unless it is meant to be — and when it fits — you will know.

By Audrina J. Bunton

 

5 Steps to Happiness

Filed under: Life — sarah @ 12:47 pm

The best cure for loneliness is happiness. Such a small sentence makes the concept sound simple. On the contrary! Learning to be happy, especially after a life-changing event that has plunged you into the depths of loneliness may be one of the hardest things you have ever had to do. However, others have walked the same path and made it to a smile, which mean you can too. Here are 5 steps that should help you on that road to happiness:

1. Do not worry about the little things
2. Do not judge others
3. Think about the needs of others
4. Let go
5. Dwell on happy thoughts

One you have learned to master these 5 concepts, or at least put them into the practice of living, a smile will be at the ready.

Do not worry about the small things

As you already know, everyday life has plenty of challenges, even on a good day. Of course, you have to deal with everyday activities and events. However, do not let the small things throw you for a loop, bringing depression and loneliness descending like a black cloud.

For example, if you do not understand the conversation at a family gathering, do not let it bring you down. So what? Give yourself credit. You know plenty about other subjects. Besides, in the grand scheme of things, will it really make a big difference if you are knowledgeable in that area or not? Similarly, if something is not really going to adversely affect the outcome, or something else would work as well, do not worry about it.

Do not Judge Others

Some of the loneliest people are those that are quick to find fault with others. How can anyone find friends and happiness if they are always concentrating on the faults of others? Instead, do not forget other people are only human. Like you, no one is perfect. They may not always be understanding, might say the wrong thing unintentionally, or not always be around just when you think it is important. But, that does not mean they do not care, or would not be a good friend in a pinch.

Think about the needs of others

Part of the reason people sink into the depths of loneliness is because they are so self-absorbed in their own miseries. Of course, dwelling on unhappiness can only lead to further sadness. Instead, when people begin to concentrate on how they can help others and become a positive influence in their lives, the natural result is starting to feel good on a personal level. When other individuals’ happiness becomes more important than self, loneliness will naturally diminish and be slowly replaced by your own happiness.

“If there were in the world today any large number of people who desired their own happiness more than they desired the unhappiness of others, we could have paradise in a few years” Bertrand Russell

Let go

How many people who have lost a loved one through death or divorce have spent countless hours asking the question: what if . . . .? Although natural, does it really do any good? No! Thus, after a period of morning, it is time to make the effort to let go.

No. It does not mean to forget the lost love or event that resulting in an overwhelming loneliness. However, it does mean to give it a proper place in life and start living for the present. Only when you can truly let go of the pain, leaving only memories, can you truly learn to smile again.

Dwell on Happy Thoughts

Finally, if you want to be happy, it only stands to reason that you will need to dwell on happy thoughts. Of course, it is not going to be easy. But, with practice, you can learn to keep the sad thoughts as bay, and learn to smile, even in the face of adversity.

Try this simple exercise: even on those days when a real smile seems a thousand miles away, put a smile on your face. Smile at everyone you meet throughout the day, even if it is a conscious effort. Chances are that by the end of the day, the smile will not be an effort. You may never know the positive affect a smile will have on others, but it will help you for sure.

Yes. I know none of these steps are trivial. In many cases, it will seem easier to sprout wings and fly. However, once anyone can learn to practice these five steps, happiness is within easy reach.

By Paul Sutherland

Paul Sutherland was an Accelerated Business Growth Coach but has now turned to a more personal line of coaching. After experiencing some major challenges himself, he felt more attuned to dealing with the problems and challenges most of us face in everyday life.

 

How to Be Happy

Filed under: Life — sarah @ 12:28 pm

What is the one thing that drives us the most? What is that one emotion that we are all trying to feel a little bit more of each and every day? Happiness. So why does one simple word seem to be so hard to come by? Why do so many people struggle day in and day out never really feeling enough of this simple word?

Happiness is easy and it is simple. Smile for a few minutes and you will generally find yourself feeling a little bit better. But shouldn’t we feel that way all of the time? The more we chase this feeling, the more it becomes elusive in our lives. The more things we try to acquire and the more likely we are to try substances or pills or gimmicks to produce this feeling. Why not feel this way most if not all of the time?

Our natural state of being is to be happy. We were put on an Earth that is abundant in people, resources, and situations for a reason. To know life on Earth is not to suffer, it is to learn how to produce happiness. It is to be able to connect with other souls in a physical way. To hug, to laugh, and to smile.

We tend to get in our own way in feeling happy when we think of the things we do not have or the situations we do not like. And the cycle keeps going as we continue to dwell on what we do not have. The easiest way to shift that kind of thinking is to appreciate what we do have.

If you have a car, you can be happy that you have transportation. If you have enough food to eat, you can be happy that you have nourishment. If you have even just one friend or family member, you can be happy for their companionship. And you can be happy every time you meet or see new people. The potential is there for everyone of them to become a friend. Since we are all connected in some way as human beings, they are also all part of your human family.

The more we find happiness in the simplest of things, the more we will have the more complex things. You cannot run without crawling first and you have to appreciate what you do have in order to have more. Take the time now to just SMILE! Be happy knowing that you are alive and that everything has the potential to become exactly as you would like it to. Appreciate what already is and there will be more.

By Bryan Appleton

 

Happiness Quotes

Filed under: Life,Stories,Uncategorized — sarah @ 12:24 pm

Perk up your mood and get inspired with ten of my favorite quotes about happiness. We become happier the more we focus on being happy – how it feels, what it looks and sounds like, why we want it, etc. Enjoy!

1. “Happiness comes of the capacity to feel deeply, to enjoy simply, to think freely, to risk life, to be needed.” Storm Jameson, writer

2. “Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.” Mahatma Gandhi

3. “Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.” Abraham Lincoln

4. “We hold these truths to be self-evident: That all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” Thomas Jefferson

5. “He who would travel happily must travel light.” Antoine de Saint Exupéry, pilot and author

6. “Happiness is not a station you arrive at, but a manner of traveling.” Margaret Lee Runbeck, writer

7. “Learning to live in the present moment is part of the path of joy.” Sarah Ban Breathnach

8. “Joy is not in things; it is in us.” Richard Wagner

9. Work joyfully and peacefully, knowing that right thoughts and right efforts will inevitably bring about right results. James Allen

10. “What if you began to expect the best from any situation? Isn’t it possible that you could write new chapters in your life with happy endings? Suspend your disbelief? Take a leap of faith? After all, what have you got to lose but misery and lack?” Sarah Ban Breathnach

By Ruth Hegarty

 

Should You Learn More About the Law of Attraction?

Filed under: Life — sarah @ 10:30 am

Sometimes people wonder if they should learn more about the law of attraction and how to use it in their lives. Then maybe they get discouraged or a little bit skeptical. And that’s okay. I actually encourage that. You see, if you were just to believe everything that was fed to you, you wouldn’t know what to believe. Because there are so many different theories on how to achieve things or how to produce certain outcomes in life.

And we have all been taken for a ride at least once in our lives. So, of course you should be somewhat skeptical. The law of attraction is not in my opinion some miracle cure for everything that goes wrong in our lives. However, when you are consciously aware of it and making decisions in order to benefit from it, that is when you will see things begin to shift.

And that is how it happens. It’s a shift. Some gurus will try to sell you the idea that if you buy their program or coaching, you can attract cars and money into your life in a week. And this is why most people are skeptical. Again, you begin to make shifts. Maybe some people will have unexpected windfalls or something like that, but most people won’t. When you think like that, it’s like trying to win the lottery.

You should learn more about the law of attraction if you want to make lifestyle changes. Instead of trying to magically attract a new car in 30 days or attract a huge sum of money for no reason, the law of attraction can instead help you to create a lifestyle that you want. And that includes the whole picture.

Want to know more? Go to http://www.successfulfather.com

By Bryan Appleton

Bryan Appleton is an author of self-help motivational literature as well as an entrepreneur and investor. He is a single father and has made it one of his life’s goals to try and help other people live the lives they are dreaming of.

 

3 Keys to Happiness November 17, 2008

Filed under: Life — sarah @ 12:42 pm

Most of us are content with our lives or often we feel we are “too busy” to really think about our own contentment or happiness. That’s for tomorrow or if I get a raise, promotion, the guy, the girl, the right house, paycheck, kids and so on.

We all have examples of people who are less economically fortunate, physical ailments (maybe even major), who have very significant roadblocks in their lives and who are clearly happy people. We admire them and frankly are dumbfounded by them. The fact is that these people understand either consciously or intuitively that happiness is fully under each person’s control and within everyone’s reach no matter each person’s circumstances.

The 3 Keys of Happiness are –

* Direction
* Society
* Purpose

Many people that are happy may not have all 3 Keys. And that’s ok. As long as there is true contentment/happiness and not some “hole” in their lives.

Let’s talk about each of the 3 keys.

The first key is direction. We often talk about direction when we discuss goals and goal achievement. But the fact is we don’t need to achieve that goal to gain that happiness, being on the path, having that direction, knowing where we are going will give us the excitement, pleasure and happiness we desire. It’s because we can see the progress or improvement in our lives. Our lives aren’t static (or in a rut) it’s moving in a direction that we desire and control.

Let me give you an example from my own life.

A bunch of years ago, I was in a major rut. I was exceedingly unhappy in my job and even worse, I felt trapped. I was making good money and my perception was that I wouldn’t be able to get the same salary anywhere else. My financially situation was that I was pretty much spending it as it came in. Trapped.

So I decided to start saving some money. The idea was to slowly build up some change in the bank, so that I would have the power to walk into my bosses office and quit (I had quite a melodramatic scenario in my mind!) if I chose to without fear of the economic consequences.
Since I WAS spending everything that I was making, I started out small 50 bucks a month. It would build as I moved forward.

About 6 months later, with a whopping 300 dollars in savings, I decided work wasn’t so bad, things were looking up and I realized my attitude was just better. I’m sure everybody else saw it before I did, and relieved to see it!

Come on! With 300 bucks in the bank! It took me a while, but I realized that I had created a direction in my life and no longer felt trapped, even though it would take years to create the nest egg that I needed to make it happen.

We see this all the time. People in poor circumstances going back to school, seriously handicapped people using their therapy all creating a direction in their lives.

The second key is society. Not society as we know it, but each of our own society. Whether it’s family, friends, extended family, church/school groups or other associations. Whatever works for each of us. It may fluctuate, loose someone that was part of your society and what happens, we are sad and unhappy. We see couples who are perfectly happy with just the two of them and nobody else. We see the mother or father who are happiest when their lives are surrounded by their children. Our society could be quite large or very small. It answers a need each of us has to be loved, liked, appreciated, joked with, taken seriously, respected, teased….belong. The famous line in a movie with Tom Cruise looking at the woman he realizes makes him quite happy is “You complete me.” And when we have a society that will “complete us”, we are more likely to have happiness in abundance!

The third key is purpose. There are a lot of books out there that make it clear purpose is payback time. That purpose is doing good works for the betterment of society (the big kahuna society, not as I defined it earlier). While it’s a lovely thought, I do believe its poppycock.

Purpose IS what gets us going, what makes us feel good to do. Purpose could be your family. However, maybe not. This is where parents can go into the whole guilt thing. The love their kids and do all the right things, but they aren’t completely content with that. It could be that they just need to spend time with adults (society) or it could be that to meet their purpose they need to be more involved whether its volunteer work, belonging to something like a Rotary Club that does service in the community.

Purpose doesn’t need to be huge gestures. It’s whatever makes you feel you are making a valid contribution to your world. It could be serving in a homeless shelter on Thanksgiving Day; it could be mentoring someone at work or helping neighbors with their needs.

Each of these three keys needs to be formed by you. Not other people, not you trying to impress or satisfy other people. Those routes are not likely to make you happy. But by you choosing your direction in life, gathering a society that you can enjoy and grow with and fulfilling a purpose as YOU define it, you produce the keys to a happy and contented life.

There is the old joke about money may not buy happiness, but I’d like to give it a try! Yet it is true. Most of us have cool things that we all want. When we get them, we are happy for the moment or so, but pretty soon there is the next thing or toy or object. It’s like a drug always needing a new “fix”.

As mentioned, examples of happy people abound. And they’re not happy because of their “things” (if they have them) they are happy because they have direction, society and purpose in their lives. And the cool thing is, is that it doesn’t cost a dime!

So look at the 3 keys to happiness.

What direction would you like your life to be headed in?

Who do you enjoy being with, what individual, group “completes” you?

What could you be doing right now that would make you feel good, a contributor, something more?

If you can work towards those answers, you won’t have to be looking for happiness. It will show up before you even know it!.

By Terry Bass

Terry Bass of CHADONS Resources is a business coach supporting businesses that wish to reach a higher level of success.

Terry coaches, provides thought provoking speaking engagements and facilitates learning processes that focuses on helping people succeed.

 

Happiness Made Simple October 17, 2008

Filed under: Life,Uncategorized — sarah @ 12:47 pm

Why do we make it so difficult to be Happy? You know the old saying “a frown is a smile upside down”. You would think in today’s world they would have a pill for this too. I just read a book about 25 ways to be happy. When you wake up you have to say a couple of lines over and over. You have to look in the mirror and smile at yourself. You have to hug 5 people everyday, you get the idea.

I’m not saying these are bad things, but the burden of trying to do to many things to be happy would make me more unhappy than if I just stay at the level of unhappiness I am now.

Why is it one person is happy with $100.00 and another is not? It’s a reaction from the past, simple as that. If a women was physically abused in the past and another wasn’t, compare their reactions. The abused women would react defensive, jumpish to a man’s sudden touch while the other women might warm up to it. The point is it’s a reaction to the past.

Men and Women have tried to physco-analyze and make a big business out of helping people be happy and the world seems more screwed up and unhappy than ever.

If you buy into the idea that happiness or unhappiness is a reaction then we can move it into the category of a habit. So here’s the trick. Change the habit you change the reaction. Change the unhappy reactions and you are happy. No therapist or 25 steps to do.

For example lets say you react to a situation by drinking. You get drunk and a series of things happen which make you unhappy. Without having to go back 40 years and analyze your childhood, what he said what she said, you recognize your reaction.

Now to make it simple you just have to work on changing your reaction. Once you find a reaction which is positive you do it over and over until it becomes a habit. The key is this new reaction must make you happy. You might also be surprised that this new reaction might affect other areas that troubled you.

Be patient. You and I know how hard it is to change habits, but we also know it’s much better to be happy than unhappy. Life can’t always be so complicated and maybe this can be one of those simple things you can fix.

By Ric Bai