Happiness and Perceptions
Author: Catherine Pulsifer
The way we perceive our problems, perceive being the key word, and the importance we give to them, determines how we will deal with them and determines our happiness. Why, Because the world is a reflection of our mind. We can see a world full of problems; we can focus on the negative and only see what is wrong.
What Do You Concentrate On
I once read a story about a beautiful Christmas tree which had over 12,000 lights on it. The tree was amazing. But, there was one light that was burned out. So do you focus on the 11,999 lights that are sparkling in the night or do you focus on the one light that is burned out.
On the other hand, we can see a world filled with challenges with the realization we have the capacity to overcome them. To make this point read the wisdom of Jim Rohn, "To solve any problem, here are three questions to ask yourself: First, what could I do? Second, what could I read? And third, who could I ask?"
Can You See A Solution?
We can let our problems depress us or we can accept life's challenges and deal with them as they occur. We can turn our focus to looking for the positive in the problem, and, there is a positive to every problem, sometimes you just have to stop and look for it. Richard Bach once said, "Every problem has a gift for you in its hands."
The key to any problem is to view not the problem but a reversal in thought processes wherein focus is shifted to be solution oriented. A problem remains a problem for many people because there are stuck looking at the issue as being the way it is. However, the first step in modifying your outlook is to first recognize that there is an issue. Secondly, the next step is to reframe the issue to one that verbally suggests that there is a solution. In other words, something only becomes a problem or issue once it is identified as such and, most importantly, is not an issue that you solely define as one.
For example, if you say that there is a problem with the production line in a factory, you have to be able to point out exactly what the problem is. And, you also need to seek ratification of your issue by drawing it to the attention of someone else who is working in the same area. If the production line problem is verified, then it becomes a productivity issue for the company.
The next logical step for you is to offer a solution to the problem. Once you are solution oriented, you have refrained in becoming stuck in the problem. People who are stuck in the problem invariably continue to complain about whatever it is that's wrong but never offer or suggest a possible solution.
The second major step to being solution oriented is to ask whether or not you can change, alter, or fix the problem by yourself. If you can fix, change, modify or repair the problem on your own then do it.
Thirdly, if you can't fix, change or repair the problem on your own, seek assistance and guidance. If you have a solution, share this solution with the person to whom you have asked for assistance.
The main point is this: no matter whom you are or where you are there will always be problems, obstacles, roadblocks or milestones to overcome. Part of life is to recognize that happiness is not a state where there are no problems but a state of mind where you realize that problems have solutions. If you have foresight in viewing life as a series of challenges that can be overcome, challenges that aid in your development and character, you'll never suffer from hindsight that sees what was past that is better than what lies ahead.
We have the ability to determine our happiness hour-by-hour and day-by-day, through our thoughts and actions. We make that choice every morning when we get out of bed. We can choose to look forward to the day, or we can choose to moan and complain. It's your choice!
To Give Is One Key
There is one thing for sure in this life. It is that you cannot give your responsibility for happiness to someone else no matter what you believe. It is your responsibility and yours alone. To make you happy is more a matter of what you do with your life than what you receive from life. Happiness is more a matter of inner satisfaction and the ability to look beyond your own needs whether that is fancy things, or the latest technological devices for the home. Happiness is more about what is internal and not what is external.
Deception of Perception
Let me ask you this question. Have you ever looked at a well-dressed person driving an expensive car and wondered what they do for a living? Have you driven by a mansion or stately home and longed to live within its walls? Have you ever viewed majestic yacht moored along the sparkling waters of the Mediterranean and wished you were the one who owned that splendid boat?
What you may have been guilty of is a deception of perception. You see, you may have been thinking that those expensive clothes and fancy care, or that huge expansive home, or that magnificent yacht equates with happiness. This is the point at which perceptions play with your mind. This is where perceived happiness is embroiled exclusively in the outward display of wealth be that in clothes, cars, homes or expensive floating accommodations. But, what is underneath all of this outward display of wealth? Funny thing about perceptions. They are only as good as our check against reality. Perceptions do not give facts, truth or understanding. Perceptions can lead to prejudice, to labeling someone they are not, or to cause strife where none really exists.
Look Inside For Clues
Happiness is a need to put yourself in front of people you care about and let them know it by what you say and do not by what they can do for you. It is much like asking a baby to walk when they are only ready to crawl. Their ability to walk is within and not what someone else demands.
Some fantastic marketers would have us believe that by buying their products we will be much happier. The cosmetic market is one area that comes to mind where companies sell their products, especially to women, by telling them how much more beautiful they will look and therefore how much happier they will be with their appearance. It is not what we look like, smell like, talk like, or what we own that creates happiness. It is the opposite. It is within each of us to develop a level of happiness by what we stand for, what we call ethics of a personal nature, or how we see and help our children develop.
Do Not Pass On Life
Do not let anyone or anything outside of your own control tell you or suggest to you what will make you happy. That decision of what is happiness is up to you and you alone to create and cherish. Happiness cannot be bought from someone nor can you sell or give your happiness to someone else. Each person is ultimately responsible for their happiness, how they view life and what choices they make. Some of these choices help form the basis of happiness while other choices serve only to erode it. Remember this: true happiness is what is inside of you not what is outside. No amount of wealth, or possessions or fame defines what it is to be happy. As you probably have seen on television news casts, there are suicides amongst some of the rich and famous.
Jack Brown's quote summarizes this thought well, "Happiness is not the absence of problems; but the ability to deal with them."
So if you think you are unhappy because of your problems, think again.
Inspirational Quotes for Reflection:
"You become your wisest, happiest and most loving self when you commit to your own happiness and find ways to be of value to others." Sophie Winters
"Focus your energy on greatness." David DeNotaris
"Hopeful, happy words make a big difference, so sprinkle your vocabulary with superlatives, and they'll serve as a positive affirmation." Laurin Sydney
Read more Inspirational Thoughts
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