Thursday, August 27, 2009

Three Inspirations for Happiness

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The following three inspirations were adapted fromA Daily Dose of Happiness, and they represent three key ways to increase our happiness.

1. FORGIVING FOR HAPPINESS

We like to think we are better than our friends below us in the food chain, such as the octopus and the snail. After all, we have love. We feel happiness. We have empathy. We have a conscience. We can reason.


We can also hold onto grudges.


Grudges are, in fact, prickly little creatures that worm their way into our hearts. Holding onto them is a self-defeating exercise.


Fortunately, forgiveness is also uniquely human. Forgiveness cleanses the spirit. Forgiveness let's us get on with enjoying our lives instead of being preoccupied with someone else's. Forgiveness opens the door to happiness.


2. SUPPORTING FOR HAPPINESS


When things seem to be very bleak, it does not take much to lift someone's spirits. Sometimes all it takes is to let somebody know they are not alone.


That is why it is so important to smile at people, especially if they look down. And if you know what is weighing the person down, let them know they are not alone. Don't go burdening them with all your miseries, but let them know you have been there.


Guess what? You will feel happiness for having helped them, too.


3. ACCEPTING FOR HAPPINESS

There is no such thing as happiness if you are not at peace with yourself. Too many people just don't know how to make peace with themselves.

Peace begins with acceptance. Whether we agree with everything we do (like the environmentalist who sometimes throws out a recyclable container), it is important to accept what we do.

Do we always make the best choices? No. But they are the choices we make.

Do we always treat people with the most respect? No. But it is how we treat people.

Can we improve? Yes, and we should. But that is a project for the future. First we must accept who we are now, rather than condemning ourselves. Then we can move to improve the person we will be tomorrow. Both acceptance today and improvements tomorrow will increase our happiness.
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