Seven Steps to Lasting Happiness!

Step 1 – Discover Yourself

There is a purpose in each of our lives. We may need to dig deep within ourselves to find out what that purpose is, but the clearer our mission is, the better are our chances of accomplishing it.

Step 2 – Maintain Positive Attitudes

We’re all gifted and blessed in our own unique ways. When we treasure who we are and believe in our inherent capabilities, we find that the world also starts to believe in us. When we are willing to bet on ourselves, the world will bet on us as well.

Step 3 – Discover Hone Your Life Skills

Our happiness comes from focusing our energies on the things that we identify as important in life and that are aligned to our mission. If we try to do too much, our priorities become jumbled, which can lead to confusion, frustration, and unhappiness.

Step 4 – Build Healthy Relationships

Our relationships with our close ones play a big part in our lives. When we have healthy relationships filled with love, respect, dialogue, and learning, we experience abounding happiness.

Step 5 – Let Ethics and Values be your Guide

Our deepest joy comes from living an ethical life.  Unethical living may bring temporary happiness, but it will be short-lived. Deep within each of us is a soul that is pure, which is why when we engage in pure activities, we experience happiness.

Step 6 – Awaken your Spirituality

Spirituality does not just exist in places of worship; it is right in our midst, in everything we do from dusk to dawn.

Step 7 – Enjoy the Ride

Working on the first six steps in this gives us internal contentment of having lived to our full potential and living an ethical and empowering life, but it is the seventh step that brings about the fun and joy of life. The seventh step without the first six can bring about a limited happiness, but lasting and sustained happiness comes from working on the first six steps whilst savoring and enjoying the process.

Every moment is a priceless blessing. Happiness is not a destination, it is a process. Life is a journey to be savored every step of the way.

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Not a day goes by!

Two years ago today, I lost my Mom. Two years have gone by but not one day passes without a thought about her  – the phenomenal role she played in my journey.

It is strange that we lived together for almost 50 years and yet her incredible impact dawned on me only after her death!

Mom: Wherever in heaven you are, I love you & thank you for your amazing contribution in my life!

“If you have a Mom treat her with tender care for you will only know her value when you see her empty chair!”

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The Art of Listening!

Listening can help us build and strengthen relationships; solve problems; build understanding; resolve conflicts; reduce errors, and improve accuracy.

When you listen deeply, others feel free and comfortable in your presence. They are able to expand on their thoughts without fear of rejection. We’ve all experienced how incredibly comforting it is to when we are truly being heard.

You are a good listener when you:

-Give your full attention
-Avoid interrupting the speaker
-Refrain from immediate reaction
-Desist from offering unsolicited advice
-Ask questions only to ensure understanding
-Give feedback
-Avoid judgement

The foundation of the art of listening is to make the conversation about them, not you!

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In your effort to make positive life contributions, think in terms of cooperation, not competition!

Contributing towards bringing about positive change creates significance, value, happiness, and balance. This value-added makes others want to be around you.

Every career offers opportunities to show genuine concern and compassion toward those you come into contact with.

Japan’s economic growth following World War II was a major 20th-century success story. The growth was not based on competition, but moreover, a fundamental element expressed in the Japanese word “Kyosei”, which means ‘a spirit of cooperation’.

So, imagine what successes could follow in not only our own lives but the greater good if we all were to follow the same sense of contributing by thinking in terms of cooperation, not competition?

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Genuine Understanding!

If you take the time to understand others by listening with your eyes, ears, heart, undivided attention and without judgement, you will already be halfway there.

I did a presentation some time back for a cancer group. I started by saying: “If I say to you I know and understand your pain, I will be lying to you. The truth is I don’t. I do not have cancer and do not know how it feels to have cancer. So help me understand how you feel and what your biggest challenges are?”

The group responded by expressing thoughts like:

“Why me?”
“I feel a loss of control.”
“I’m angry.”
“I’m afraid.”

These are real issues with no quick-fix solutions. I did my best to respond to them, but the fact that I took to the time to ask and be attentive to the group’s feelings was important. The participants felt their feelings were valued, so they responded well to the presentation.

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What kind of memories will you leave for your loved ones?

Your loved ones will not remember what you said but rather remember what you did. As it is said that: With words, you can only preach, with action you teach.

Today marks two years since I lost my Dad. Actually, it was not a loss. He was always a gain; still remains so, and will continue to be forevermore.

He was a man of few words who taught through action, not words. He was confident and strong, yet humble and gentle. He never missed a moment to say a kind word; provide positive feedback or notice something good.

He always found it a joy and a blessing to get the opportunity to contribute his time and efforts to his community and society at large. He had very little need for recognition; fame or credit. For him, making a positive impact was the biggest reward.

He was insightful and wise; an effective leader in the community; a family man, and a sound businessman. For my Dad, his greatest happiness came from making others happy! He was always a joy to be around.

I miss you, Dad. Thank you for your love and inspiration!

These are just some of the fond memories my father left me. Memories that inspire me every day to aim for being like him.

What about you? What kind of memories will your children have of you? Create the fondest memories with your loved ones. The types of memories that will inspire them beyond your life!

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Respect for others begins by respect for self. Respecting others no matter who they are – rich, poor, strong, weak, man, woman, black, white – reflects more on who you are, then who they are.

Our natural instinct is to be judgemental of others with whom we engage – he is wasting my time; she has an ulterior motive; or why do they not just get to the point?

It does not mean we get into a long winded discussion. We can keep things short; yet respectful.
Showing respect to another human being, irrespective of who they are is a sign of respect for self!

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