Stop competing with the Joneses, your grass is just as green as theirs.

“If we only wanted to be happy it would be easy; but we want to be happier than other people, which is almost always difficult, since we think them happier than they are.”              Charles-Louis de Secondat Baron de Montesquieu

If there was no one else around to compare ourselves to, we would all be happier than we are. But none of us live in a vacuum. There are others around and seeing them happy makes some of us miserable.

“There must be a reason why they’re happier than we are,” we think to ourselves. Those people have a better life than we do is what most of us come back with. They have more than us. Their car is nicer or house is better decorated and so on. We think that it’s what they have that’s making them happier than us.

The trouble is, those other people look at us the same way, they think the same thing, that we have nicer things than they do, that we’re happier than they are.

Both assumptions are false. But the effect is the same, it makes us both miserable. It makes us compete against each other. When left to our own devices, we’re happy and so are they. When we see each other, we become jealous.

In our minds the other person is happier than us, making us jealous rather than happy. In their mind, we’re happier than they are, making them jealous as well. We begin to resent each other, wishing ill will on the other, hoping they’ll fail, so that we’ll be happier and better than they are.

If you want to be really happy, stop trying to keep up with the Joneses, especially when they’re trying to keep up with you. Chances are they aren’t happy at all, they just put on a good front in order to make you jealous. Don’t make them better or happier than they really are.

Be happy with who you are and what you have, and you’ll make everyone else jealous. Give it a try. You’ll be amazed at the result.

Want your luck to change? Change the way you think.

“Remember, happiness doesn’t depend upon who you are or what you have; it depends solely upon what you think.” Dale Carnegie

I used to think if you were always happy that it meant you were doing something wrong, or that you were simple minded. At work I never smiled, work was serious business and there was no place for smiles or laughter.

Deep inside me there was always something missing. I’d think If I could make it to that corner office I’d be happy. If I got promoted, then I’d be happy. But I wasn’t happy. With the promotion came more stress, and even less time for smiling or thinking about my own happiness.

It was a catch-22. Constantly going around circles. I would be happy if I had that. When I had that, there’d be other things in the way and so the cycle would repeat.

Then I noticed something. Most of the people around me were happy. They had less than I did, had worse jobs, less money, and all kinds of other problems. But they were happy.

Overnight, my whole outlook changed. I stopped worrying about the next promotion. I stopped thinking what would happen if things went wrong. Instead I thought about what I had at the moment. I thought about the others at work who were always happy.

The next day, for the first time at work, I joined them for lunch. They were shocked. They thought I was a bastard. one of those horrible bosses. A couple of them were ready to quit. That was the first time I smiled at work. Everyone thought I hit the lottery. None of them quit. From that day forth, we had lunch together every single day.

I was a new person. Just by changing how I thought, by being content with what I had, I found happiness. I also found that things came to me easier once I exuded happiness. Promotions came quicker, people were nicer, lady luck showed up more often.

Happiness really does come from inside you, not from who you are or what you have. It comes from within, and when you become happy, doors open for you. It becomes contagious, making others around you feel the same way.

Cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes to you

“Cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes to you, and to give thanks continuously. And because all things have contributed to your advancement, you should include all things in your gratitude.”  Ralph Waldo Emerson

Everything which happens to us and the things we come across all contribute to make us who we are. Each new experience builds on top of the old, forming the person that we are, and the person that we are to become.

If you’re happy with the person you are, and what you’ve accomplished, give thanks to all the good which has crossed your path.

If you aren’t happy with the what you’ve accomplished, give thanks to all the good which has crossed your path, for your journey isn’t over over yet.

If you aren’t happy with the person you are, think about this: you are reading this, which makes you more fortunate than millions of others. You should be thankful for that good fortune. You might have had more bad than good cross your path, but while your heart still beats, and your brain still works, it is within your power to become the person you should be. Start by looking at any good which happened to you, no matter how insignificant or how  far back. As you think back, you’ll come to realize that you have much more to be thankful for than you had originally thought. The more you give thanks for the good things, any bad which previously crossed your path will begin to diminish, to the point where it no longer has any control over the kind of person you are.

Get into the habit of being grateful for every good thing that crosses your path, and give thanks continuously. It is a simple thing to do, but yields great returns. Not only will you notice more good than bad crossing your path, you’ll be happy with the person you’ve become, and so will those around you.

There is enough sadness in the world without yours

“Be happy. Talk happiness. Happiness calls out responsive gladness in others. There is enough sadness in the world without yours…. never doubt the excellence and permanence of what is yet to be. Join the great company of those who make the barren places of life fruitful with kindness…. Your success and happiness lie in you…. The great enduring realities are love and service…. Resolve to keep happy and your joy and you shall form an invincible host against difficulties.” Helen Keller

Happiness is infectious. A smile is the only infectious affliction people are encouraged to spread. When you are happy, and you talk happiness, it becomes difficult for those around you not to be happy as well.

There really is enough sadness in the world, with justifiable reasons, such that it is a crime to add your sadness to the mix.

No matter what has occurred in the past, no matter what has happened, always remember that it is in the past, and should not dictate the future. What is yet to be can be the greatest thing to come, if you will it. Once you acknowledge that the best is yet to come, it will happen, over and over again.

To ensure your life is the best that it can be, exude kindness at every possible moment. Kindness begets kindness. Be kind to others, for the simple sake of being kind, and the satisfaction you receive will be greater than anything anyone can give you.  A common trait among the great people remembered throughout history is the kindness they show to their fellow man and woman. No one is remembered for being mean, but there are many who are remembered for being kind.

Success and happiness is controlled from within. These are not controlled or dictated by others. Others can try to influence your actions, but ultimately, it is you who decides what you will do, and how you will feel. Once you know these things, success and happiness will always follow you.

Love yourself and those around you. Serve yourself and those around you. Resolve to always be happy, to spread your joy to others, and you will find that no difficulty shall cross your path that you will not be able to handle and that others around you will always be there to support and help you.

 

The path to success and happiness

“Whatever else may be shaken, there are some facts established beyond warring: virtue is better than vice, truth is better than falsehood, kindness than brutality.” Quintin Hogg

The way to prosperity is through many paths. The way to happiness is through many paths. The way to riches and rewards is through uncountable paths. There are some who would have you believe otherwise. They would have you believe that there is only one path to all of these.

For many, the way to prosperity and happiness is through riches and rewards. The way to riches and rewards is through vice, falsehood and brutality. For them, any other way is for the week and ignorant.

There are a few who will never bend, who will always know that success and happiness comes from being virtuous, kind and truthful. For them, there will never be enough riches or rewards that would alter these constants. They may be tempted, and some may even fall under the temptation, but they will all know what is right from wrong. Those who fall will be forever haunted by their conscience.

Those who acquire riches and rewards through vice, falsehood and brutality will never become content or truly happy. No amount of riches and rewards will ever be enough for them. Their misery is that they will always want more.

History has always shown that virtue is better than vice, truth is better than falsehood, and kindness is better than brutality. Men, women and nations who test these premises have always succumbed to their own vices, falsehoods and brutalities.

And yet, more keep thinking the path to prosperity and happiness is through riches and rewards. The way to riches and rewards is through vice, falsehood and brutality.

The true path to riches and rewards is through virtue, truth and kindness. The path to success and happiness is being content with whatever riches and rewards virtue, truth and kindness bestow upon you.

What you think makes you who you are.

“All that we are is the result of what we have thought. If people speak or act with evil thoughts, pain follows them. If people speak or act with pure thoughts, happiness follows them, like a shadow that never leaves them.” Siddhartha Gautama

Many times you’ve probably heard that after a while, people and their pets begin to resemble each other. It is the same with people and their thoughts. You become the person that’s contained within your thoughts.

If you’re preoccupied with evil thoughts, you will become an evil person. If you’re preoccupied with good thoughts, you’ll become a good person.

What you think becomes who you are.  When you think evil thoughts, not only do you become an evil person, but pain and torment will find you no matter where you go.

When you think, speak and act with pure thoughts, you’ll become a good and decent person. Goodness and happiness will greet you where ever you go.

It is the same with failure and success. If you think, deep down, that you will fail at any task you try, then you really will fail. If, deep down, you know that you will succeed, then chances are that you will find success. One of the differences between the two, is that the person who knows they will fail will give up after each failure. The person who knows they will succeed doesn’t let a failure here or there stop them. The person who knows they will succeed will continue trying, regardless of how many failures they encounter, until they finally succeed.

If you want to change yourself, begin by changing how you think. Begin by changing your thoughts, by thinking like the person you want to be. If you want to be a winner, think like a winner. If you want to be a good person, remove evil thoughts from your mind, and try to think of happiness.

Not only are you what you eat, you are also what you think. There are no born losers. No one is born unlucky. If you think you’re a loser, you will be a loser. If you think you’re unlucky, you will be unlucky.

Change begins from within. Through the power of your thoughts, everything is possible.

Feeling down? Let the magic found in a child lift you.

“Look at the children around you and you will find the magic curtain, magic indeed in this respect, that instead of dropping slowly down before your wondering eyes, it is growing up, unfolding and expanding some new beauty or exposing some well-remembered fault. What pleasure to note the many wonders of this all-revealing scene! What innocence in the sweet child face, what purity in the clear child eyes!” Nellie V. Anderson

Children are our future. How anyone can not look at a child and be moved is beyond comprehension. When you look at a happy, excitable child you see magic in their eyes. Too see real beauty, gaze into the face of an innocent child. Children still have that single quality which seems to evade many adults: the belief that anything is possible.

Look into the eyes of your own child. How can you not be moved? Gaze into their eyes and you’ll catch the glimmers of innocence, which seem to think that anything is possible.

Look at your children as they sleep. Do you not see yourself? Do you not see potential? Do you not see yourself starting over?

Watch your children as they play. Are you not transported back to an earlier time when you were as carefree and happy? For a few fleeting  moments, don’t all of the worlds problems magically disappear?

Hug your child and feel the magic that passes between the two of you. Close your eyes and feel their love filled arms embracing you with all their might. Can’t you see the future? Isn’t it a view of yourself twenty or thirty years from now, happy and content?

Gaze into their eyes while they’re still holding you and you’ll see what true love really is.

Now take all of those feelings and remember them any time your feeling down, or that the weight of the world is too much to bear. A child is your miracle contribution to humanity. When you reflect on the feelings a child inspires within you, there is nothing you won’t do to ensure that child gets every opportunity that you missed out on.

If you don’t have a child of your own, you are missing out on one of the greatest miracles on Earth. It doesn’t matter if it is not your biological child. It doesn’t matter if the child is adopted, a grandchild, or your best friends. What matters most is how that child is loved and raised in order for the magic to show.

Why I’m always smiling

I’m always smiling because I’m happy
I’m happy because the sunrise in the morning is a beautiful site to behold,
even if it’s hidden by clouds and rain and snow, I know it’s still there
I’m happy because of the person who just let me ahead,
even though ten others wouldn’t, one person did, and that was all I needed
I’m happy because I have a friend
even though others have dozens or hundreds, one person who will be there for me is all I need
I’m happy because of the air filling my lungs
even though it may not be the cleanest, it means I’m alive
I’m happy because
While the sun rises and air fills my lungs, My dreams have a chance of one day coming to pass, and one person by my side to see that day with, makes everything else irrelevant.

And that, is why, I’m always smiling.

Follow your heart and you’ll find the right lover and job

“You’ve got to find what you love and that is as true for work as it is for lovers. Your work is going to fill a large part of your life and the only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work. And the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking and don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you’ve found it.” Steve Jobs

Finding the right thing to do is as difficult as finding the right person. If you marry the wrong person, you’ll never be happy. The same goes for work. Do a job you don’t love and you’ll never be truly happy.

The best work is done by those who love what they’re doing. When you find a job that you love, it no longer becomes work, it becomes an obsession that you will excel at.

Never settle for a job you don’t love. Doing a job you don’t love is the same as marrying someone you don’t love. Life becomes a burden. Happiness would always be out of reach.

If you haven’t found what you love, keep looking. As with a lover, the job that you’ll love is out there somewhere. Use the same strategy in finding the right job as you would in finding the right lover. Trying different jobs is the equivalent of dating. Rather than lowering your standards, look in the right places and you’ll find the right job, and the right lover.

Finding one will make you content. Finding both will make you happy and successful.

 

 

A role model for you and your kids, look no further than Kathy Ireland.

“If we want our children to possess the traits of character we most admire, we need to teach them what those traits are and why they deserve both admiration and allegiance. Children must learn to identify the forms and content of those traits.” William J. Bennett

There are certain traits every person should have in order to live a happy, rewarding and contented life. The best time to develop those traits, such that they become second nature, is when growing up. A child is like a sponge and absorbs what is seen, heard, and taught.

A parents purpose in life is to be the perfect role model for their children. To hear a child say “I want to be like you” is the greatest compliment a parent can hear from a child.

Once children reach a certain age, the age where they begin looking for what makes them happy, they start thinking about their own dreams and aspirations. Some are content to continue following in the parents footsteps. Other teens have different aspirations, or have trouble finding the right one.

If taught the proper traits, those children will succeed no matter which path they follow. What are some of those traits? Honesty, integrity, confidence, fairness, generosity, and above all, a person of good character.

The best way to teach those traits to children is by having them yourself. The next best is to find a role model, with all of those traits and many more, like Kathy Ireland.

Kathy is the symbol of success, not because she is rich and well known. She is a success because she has all of the traits which every child needs to learn to live a happy, rewarding, and contented life.  Kathy became rich and well known because of the person she was, the person she still is.

If you want to find the perfect role model, for yourself, your teenagers, or your younger kids, look no further than Kathy Ireland.