How Feelings Determine Your Happiness, and Not The Other Way Around

What came first:

THE CHICKEN OR THE EGG?

I read an article recently that proposed a similar question only it wasn’t about food; it was about our success…

What comes first:

HAPPINESS OR SUCCESS?

I’m sure if I were to take a poll, we’d be sitting at 50/50 – but I want to explain why it’s critical that we all subscribe to the same answer:

If happiness doesn’t come first, success is fleeting.

No matter how successful we become, if we are not happy independently of that success, eventually we will find a way to discredit even the most esteemed successes.

WHY DO WE SET GOALS?

We set them because we want to be successful – we want to HAVE, POSSES or BE something… but beyond that…we want to feel a certain way.

The desire for an emotion is far greater than the desire for the actual thing. (Tweet This)

We want to feel [insert emotion here]. Examples: happy, confident, connected, inspired….

So why do we wait? Why do we put off being happy, confident and contected? Why do we believe that until we have, possess or are something we don’t get to feel the way we want to feel.

Let’s say you want to back a cake…you need ingredients first: you need the sugar, the flour, and the eggs. Once you have all of those items together, along with your efforts, you are able to produce the cake. Your feelings are the ingredients you need to produce your happiness.

WHAT IF WE LIVED WITH DELIBERATE HAPPINESS?

I have this system at work. It’s an automated system that runs every hour. Each hour it pulls documents from a folder that resides on a server. The folder contains orders that have been entered by outside sales reps. The system will pull anything in the folder. It doesn’t know (or care) if the orders are entered correctly; it pulls the order because it’s what’s in the folder. Which in turn drops into our system, and we on the inside carry out the demands of the order. If the order is entered incorrectly – then the product is produced incorrectly.

That’s what the universe does; the universe scans your folder (which in your case contains feelings and vibrations instead of orders) and whatever it finds it uses as ingredients to construct the situations and circumstances of your life. So why on earth would you give the universe bad ingredients?

BAD INGREDIENTS = BAD CIRCUMSTANCES

In every possible moment of the day we need to be thinking about, and feeling the way we hope to feel once we “get what we want,” because…

It’s highly likely that if we FEEL the way we want to feel…the byproduct of that feeling will be the realization of the thing we want. 


(Image Courtesy of: https://www.flickr.com/photos/thebokeeffect/)

10 Inspiring Life Lessons by Dr. Wayne Dyer

Dr. Wayne Dyer has been a beacon in my life for a few years. His words of wisdom have guided me through tough times, internally and externally. I credit him with helping me see that not everything in life has to be so serious. After his passing, he’s still inspiring me! I recently re-read 10 Inspiring Life Lessons We Can Learn From Wayne Dyer over at LifeHack and I’m reassured that his message will stay with me, even though he is gone.

4. Only you can change your life

“If love and joy are what you want to give and receive, change your life by changing what’s inside.”

“Be the change you want to see.”

“How others treat me is their path, how I react is mine.”

“Everyone is either an opportunity to grow or an obstacle to keep you from growing. You get to choose.”

“When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.”

“You must be what it is you’re seeking – that is, you need to put forth what you want to attract.”

“Be miserable. Or motivate yourself. Whatever has to be done, it’s always your choice.”

These were my favorite – funny how they all fell under the category: Only You Can Change Your Life. 

Go forth today and remember:

You are the only one who has the power to change how you are currently reacting to the situations and circumstances in you life. I personally believe we can control the circumstances and situations that are happening, but if you don’t – then you must remember…it’s up to you to control how you react to them.

– Pieces of Happiness

How to Become a Success

Happy New Year everybody! I hope you had a restful, rejuvenating holiday filled with reflection and contemplation. Now, let’s stop analyzing and get out there and make 2017 the best, most LIVED year of our lives!

Let’s get started!!!! I’ve devised what I call THE PRINCIPLES OF PROGRESS for 2017. Stay tuned this year for more in this series on how to make your dream come true.


The first step to success is being able to define success. What does it mean to YOU?

The second step is being able to see yourself doing/having/being the things you associate with success.

The third step is the belief that you are all of those things already.

Then, when you least expect it a person, a situation, an opportunity will show up in your life – not just as a coincidental happenstance, but as a guide. Think of this person, situation or opportunity as your boarding pass – it gets you on the train towards your destination.

If you are a person who believes in hard work and action – then listen up:

THAT IS YOUR ACTION

Take the ticket, board the train – wherever you end up, do whatever it is you have to do to keep coasting down the tracks.

Once upon a time trains didn’t move unless there was coal in the furnace… your actions are the coals in the furnace, the fuel to the fire.

 DEFINE. ENVISION. BELIEVE. ACTION.


(Image Courtesy of: https://www.flickr.com/photos/pustovit/)

30 Minutes to a Happier Marriage

How often do you come home from work, plop yourself down on the couch, and proceed to disconnect from the world? Your spouse was hoping to talk to you, your children are chanting your name and your answer is, “just give me a minute!”

Don’t they understand you’ve had a rough day and you don’t want to think about anything?  You just want to distract your mind by scanning through Facebook posts, Twitter feeds, and websites until you’ve gained your sanity back. Before you know it you’ve dwindled away an hour of your time, but you’re feeling recharged. NOW YOU ARE READY TO ENGAGE. Except now your spouse is busy and doesn’t have time for YOU and your kids are off playing, or at a friends house.

What do you think that does to your relationship?

Lifestyle website YourTango.com polled 100 mental health professionals and found that communication problems are the most common factor that leads to divorce (65 percent), followed by couples’ inability to resolve conflict (43 percent).

Want to stay more connected to your spouse but don’t want to lose your sanity? Follow this basic trick to help you see how putting your spouse first can be the best medicine for that crummy day. (And if it’s not, at least you’ll be able to go back to mindless stuff afterward)

I call it Thirty for Three, Three for Thirty and here’s how it works:

Thirty for Three – If you are separated from your significant other for more than three hours – you owe them thirty uninterrupted minutes .

Three for Thirty – As soon as you are in each other’s company again you must make it a point to be within three feet of each other, for thirty minutes.

A couple things to point out:

  1. These 30 minutes of time do not add up – you do not get an hour for six hours of separation – it only applies if you’ve been apart for three hours or more.
  2. If it isn’t possible to be within three feet of your spouse the minute you see them again, you can schedule it for later in the day, but remember: the success of the exercise weighs heavily on whether or not you are around each other the minute you are together again.
  3. I should mention: these 30 minutes should be TV, Computer, and Phone free – just you and your significant other – uninterrupted.
You can use these thirty minutes to talk about vacations, dreams, jokes you heard, things you’ve wanted to tell your spouse but just haven’t found the right time. Tell them how much they mean to you, show them how much you care.

Image Courtesy of https://www.flickr.com/photos/126193407@N07/

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Extend the Life of Your Happiness

Think about how quick we are, when we’re angry, to share that story with our friends. We think it helps us get through the situation – but really – all we are doing is EXTENDING THE LIFE OF OUR ANGER. Think of it like a flame. The more we feed the fire, the bigger it gets.

Now think about how often you get really excited about something but you’re too scared to share it with others?  Why don’t we share it? Why don’t we let people get excited with us?

SHARE IT. LET OTHERS FEEL YOUR EXCITEMENT.

Let’s work to extend the life of our happiness instead of our anger.

I believe there is a part of us that becomes whatever emotion is conveyed to us when we converse with other people. We become what others are willing to share.

Think of it as a gift; what gift are you giving?

Happiness and Excitement, or Anger and Frustration? 

I have shied away from telling people about my excitement. I’m not sure how they will react. But if people react negatively to something positive that you are sharing, it could be because they don’t have anything in their lives right now that makes them feel the way you are feeling. Or they don’t understand. That’s okay! It’s not your job to make them understand, it’s your job to be happy and to share that with others.

Learning to be impenetrable by negative emotions, but impacted by positive ones is a lofty challenge. We are what we say. Right? So start talking… about what makes you happy!

The world needs it!


Image courtesy of: https://www.flickr.com/photos/wewiorka/

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You Can Never Run Out of Compassion

I’ve been thinking an awful lot about compassion. With the world in an uproar over what’s happening in politics right now, I can’t help but consider who I need to have compassion for – the people I know who are hurting and immediately affected by the outcome; or the people who hurt them?

But how can I have compassion for people who knowingly opened the gates through which evil is bellowing through?

Recently during a team meeting at my job , we discussed encounters we’ve had – as consumers –  where the service was beyond our expectations. We discussed what made the experience memorable and briefly touched upon the subject of judgment. I walked out of our meeting with the thought of judgment sitting firmly on my shoulder. I need to think about this further, I thought.

“It’s not our job to determine whether or not the requests of the customers are worthy, our responsibility is to make sure the customers are satisfied.”

Almost everyone I know has been in customer service at some point in their lives. You’ve had to: save face, bite your tongue, go against your nature, in an attempt to satisfy your responsibility as a service provider.

It’s not fun. Sometimes people ask for outrageous things, or they take advantage, or they have unrealistic expectations. But here’s the thing;

THEIR EXPECTATIONS ARE NOT UNREALISTIC – TO THEM.

Who are we to decide whether or not someone deserves to “get away with something.”

But how do we forgive the people in our lives that have hurt us with their actions? I don’t necessary know how, but I know why.

If we don’t learn to have compassion and to forgive, the seed of resentment is planted and eventually becomes a full-blown tree suffocating our best efforts to be a good human.

I use to have this photo album when I was little, about eight years old. It was bubble gum pink with a sketch of a little girl on the cover. It said, “Dear God if I give all my love away, can I have a refill?”

STOP HOARDING YOUR COMPASSION

You can’t run out of compassion. You don’t have limited access to it. Giving it to someone who might not necessarily be worthy of it, won’t deplete your supply.

Are you struggling to forgive someone, or are you finding it hard to be compassionate these days? Let’s talk about it! Comment below because discussion is the key to change.


(Image courtesy of: https://www.flickr.com/photos/53558245@N02/)

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The Only Action You Need to Take to Change Your Life

Many times in our lives things don’t go the way we want them to, or even the way we plan. Human beings WANT to be happy, so we want things to be exactly how we envision them. And when they aren’t, we give all of our energy to it. We tell everyone we know (that will listen) what happened and how we feel.

It’s natural to want other people’s support; we want to feel allied in our circumstances, we want to feel like we’re not alone. We want to know that people feel bad for us and that someone cares. It ultimately makes us feel better. But that mentality limits you. The more we focus on the negative – the less room there is for the positive. It limits your ability to take action and create change. 

We all know a person like that – we all have one in our lives – a person who complains about everything. But what they don’t realize is this: sympathizing with you, and respecting you are two different things.

“There is no victory in being the victim.” 

You didn’t win because you lost. Unless, it forces you to want to change.

14859431605_5c42d17168_o
(image courtesy of Robert Couse-Baker https://www.flickr.com/photos/29233640@N07/)

A situation doesn’t change because you talk about it, it doesn’t get better because someone sympathizes with you, a situation gets better when you take action.

So what actions can you take? You only need one… and the rest will fall into place. Are you ready for it? This is the only action you step you need to take:

Decide that you will not be a victim.

Don’t give a situation more power than it deserves. Change is inevitable, but it doesn’t have to be permanent.

Now is not forever…


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Flashback: Take the Risk Even If Nobody Is Holding Your Hand!

Original Post Date: July 2014

“and then I discovered that if there is something that ‘nobody wants to do’ that is a great opportunity to really rise to the challenge and make a difference.”

I have an interview today. It’s an interview for a department transfer and subsequently,  a promotion.

In the weeks preceding this one, I discussed this interview with a lot of people; I wanted their advice and their support. Sadly I was met with a lot of discouraging conversation. The first words out of my boss’ mouth were, “Oh, that job is really hard… Stacy* hated it. She was really unhappy.” Really?

She then told me with a shrug, “maybe they’ve changed the position since she left – you never know.” I hate when people shrug. It makes me feel like they are calling me stupid.

Another co-worker had the same reaction, “Yah, that job – it made Stacy so unhappy. She hated it.” At first, I started to question my decision. Maybe I didn’t want the job, maybe it wasn’t for me.

However, on my way to work this morning I had an epiphany: maybe I had been thinking about this too minimally – focusing on individual things about my current position – the trivial, monotonous things that everyone in my position hates doing…

Instead, maybe the thing that ‘nobody wants to do,’ is actually an entire POSITION.

Everyone’s breaking point is different. Maybe Stacy didn’t like the job, but maybe she was lazy and didn’t want to work very hard, or maybe she didn’t understand the purpose of her job in the grand scheme of things, or maybe she just didn’t care at all.

Either way, I’m not Stacy. I could love this job or I could hate it, but at least I am taking a chance on something.

Wish me luck!

Edited to Update: I KILLED IT. No matter what happens now, I feel 100% confident with HOW I interviewed.

Additional Update: I did not get the job. But instead, got a promotion within my current position, and additional responsibilities.


(image courtesy of: https://www.flickr.com/photos/smithser/)

 

When Losing Weight is Like Running A Business

How many times have you stepped on the scale and been disappointed with the numbers? And how many times has that disappointment lead to giving up?

“When you learn to enjoy your ‘losses’ you’ve begun the process of ‘winning’… Everyone has micro losses just make sure you have macro wins.” – Gary Vaynerchuk

You have a choice… a choice to accept failure or deny it.

When I stepped on the scale the numbers staring back at me were the same numbers I’d seen for three days. In fact, if it had been weigh-in day I would have only lost .2lbs for the week, and unless something miraculous happened between then and weigh-in I was just going to have to deny my failure. I haven’t lost any weight this week, BUT I did steer clear of carbs, and I didn’t drink that Diet Coke even though I really wanted it. Validate even your smallest victories!

This moment right here is why so many people fail their diets; they deduce that a small set back, is cause for an all-out retreat. And they forget how hard they worked regardless of the outcome. You have a week where the numbers don’t move but you’ve done everything you were supposed to do, start telling yourself, “I did the best I could,” instead of asking yourself, “why do I bother?”

You bother because it’s not about today, this week, this moment. It’s about a year from now, a month from now… it’s about the rest of your life. If you are on this weight loss journey because you want to change your life, you want to be healthier, happier – don’t let one setback determine everything.

I had a moment driving home the other night. I was hungry, I was feeling sorry for myself, and all I wanted was to eat my sorrows in McDonald’s French fries. “How come I have to work so hard to have a normal body? How come I can’t eat whatever I want?” It’s thoughts like that that will take you out of the game.

It doesn’t matter if you have to work harder – WORK HARDER.

It doesn’t matter if you haven’t lost weight  – DO THE RIGHT THING.

It doesn’t matter if you can’t wear the jeans you want … YET.

It will happen if you hold steady.

Weight loss isn’t about the sprint. it’s about the slow and steady 26.2 miles you will have to fight your way through.

I’m there with you!


(image courtesy of: https://www.flickr.com/photos/121843045@N05/)