Success or Happiness? Pick one.

Instead of the popular understanding that the Dalai Lama said the following, it was actually David Orr in his book Ecological Literacy: Educating Our Children for a Sustainable World : “The plain fact is that the planet does not need more successful people. But it does desperately need more peacemakers, healers, restorers, storytellers, and lovers of every kind. It needs people who live well in their places. It needs people of moral courage willing to join the fight to make the world habitable and humane. And these qualities have little to do with success as we have defined it.” 

Most people I meet see success as Medals, Diplomas, wealth, promotions, job titles, big cars, designer gear, top 40 hits, target or goal achievements, bestsellers, triumphs, victories etc….. All else was a nice try and sometimes a moral victory yet in the end it all smells an awful lot like failure.

But then we are told to learn from our failures and work really hard and we will eventually know success. Sometimes after years and years of failure after failure.

And then we will be happy. Right??

When we work hard, real hard. And we make sacrifices. And immerse ourselves fully and entirely for a period in time to just that thing we need to do so we can later get success and then eventually happiness. Sounds great. Right?? Sounds like the way to go. Right?? Achievements make us happy. Right??

Then what’s the reason that achievements are always followed by the ‘What’s Next’ question?

Here’s a thought to ponder. What if we did things just because they made us happy and feel better and are good for us? What if we made time for our own happiness? What if we started getting better at things that made us happy by doing more of them?


More practically, what if we started with just a few things every day that make us happier? Who do you believe will get the most benefits in their lives today, people who spend time every day doing things that make them happy or people who constantly have to work harder and harder to hopefully get successful along the line some time later (possibly)?

What things that are good for you make you happy? Would you like more of that in your life? Without hard work and sacrifices? You can.

Our simple 3 Happiness ideas for you this week are:

1- Do 1 hour more in the next week of 2 things you love doing.

2- Write down 3 things that went well for you at the end of each day. This can be anything, small or big. A compliment received, a great chat, a beautiful lunch, a nature walk. Just 3 things in a notebook or diary. every day.

3- Perform 3 conscious acts of kindness each day for the next 7 days. Again it can be small things, but do them consciously.

I believe happier, more positive people get more out of life than people who just work hard. And science backs me up on that. Try it and feel free to let me know how you get on.

What if we ditched success as we know it and started consciously being happier. Do you see how that might make us achieve more (of what we personally need and like most)? How does feeling happier sound to you?

We will be back next Wednesday with 3 more Happiness ideas.

Have a wonderful day,

Patte xxxxx


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