This is a guest post by Louis Efron.
The noted self-help guru, Dr. Wayne Dyer advises, “If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.” You are the only one standing between how you may feel now and happiness.
For some, finding happiness is elusive. They say they want it and are working towards it, but in their hearts they don’t believe they can achieve it or are even worthy of it. Instead they focus on how unhappy they are and question why more unhappiness continues to flow into their lives. “Why do these things keep happening to me?” they tell themselves.
If you think you can’t be happy, you won’t. If you see yourself as already connected to everything you want and need, you will experience abundance in your life. Happiness will appear in everything you do.
Happiness in life comes to those who have the courage to be happy. As basketball hall-of-famer John Wooden coached, “Things turn out best for those who make the best out of the way things turn out.”
You alone have the power to achieve happiness in your life. But, you do have a choice to make. Do you hand that power over to someone else by letting his or her actions shape your life or happiness? Or do you use the ultimate power you have been given to be happy despite what is going on around you and things you can’t control?
In the documentary film, Escape from a Nazi Death Camp, two Jewish detainees at the Nazi death camp Sobibor met, fell in love, escaped, married and had a beautiful family and life together. In the midst of evil, this couple possessed the courage to embrace happiness and love. Their union kept them alive.
A false belief in where happiness comes from plays a hand in keeping people from that same happiness. Many people desire money, titles or fame believing those things will bring happiness and fulfillment. Not possessing these things becomes their excuse for not being happy. Even when people achieve wealth and fame, there is never enough to provide the happiness they crave and their excuses continue.
In fact, money, title or fame rarely plays a role in happiness at all. Examine the rich and famous for an illustration of this reality. Addiction, depression and unhappiness plague many who appear to be on the top of the world.
What will make you most happy in life are things you may already possess: love, laughter, health, family, friendship, support, and encouragement.
Over a century ago, Russell Conwell the Baptist minister and inspirational speaker, encouraged his followers to find the “acres of diamonds” in their own backyards.
At the heart of his message was a parable Conwell recounted about a wealthy man living on a farm by a river.
“He was contented because he was wealthy, and wealthy because he was contented. One day a priest visited the wealthy man and told him about diamonds.
After hearing about the value of the recently discovered stones, the wealthy man now thought himself poor and discontented without them.
He sold his farm, left his family and travelled far to find true wealth – the diamonds. He did not find them and became sick. In despair, he drowned himself in the sea.
Shortly after, the new owner of the man’s farm noticed a sparkling stone in a stream on his property. A closer look revealed that it was a diamond. Further excavation uncovered acres of diamonds.”
Conwell went on to point out, “You are, at this moment, standing in the middle of your own acres of diamonds.”
You don’t need to travel outside your own heart and mind to find the happiness you are looking for in life. It is already there, but you must use the right tools to dig for it.
In my new book, How to Find a Job, Career and Life You Love, I write about the tool I use called S.L.A.M. – standing for subtract, less, add, and more. This tool is effective because it forces me to focus on the things that are truly important in my life – the actions that will make me happy and fulfilled.
Using S.LA.M. will do the same for you. Asking and answering the below questions then living true to your responses will help you discover the happiness and fulfillment you are looking for in your life.
Ask the below questions daily, weekly, monthly or as often as needed. Update and revise your S.L.A.M. as your life evolves in new and positive directions.
Commit to your S.LA.M. today and watch your life transform to one filled with happiness, fulfillment and purpose.
What do I need to Subtract from my life?
What do I need to do Less of?
What do I need to Add to my life?
What do I need to do More of?
For additional help and guidance, check out my new book How to