Thursday, November 6, 2014

PEOPLE, PLACES, THINGS. THINGS THINGS AND MORE THINGS.

It's all about defining purpose.


If I said to you I NEED to make money or I NEED to go to work, you'd just chug along and sympathise or at least empathise.  But what am I really saying to myself? Am I defining my value by NEED or PERCEIVED need.  We all say, "I have to go to work." "I have to" is a very disengaging and disheartening phrase that we so easily toss into our daily vernacular.

Let's be honest here.  Society has proven one thing to us and that is we are a part of it (unless you want to go hermit) seemingly involuntarily.  We parrot this with our choices in language i.e.:"I have to." Then you spend the rest of your day looking at the clock for an end so you can go unwind somewhere in another excused behaviour known as drinking (or any other recreational hard mental release). For the average 9-5'er it's just the way it is but still despised. We get angry at "society at large", government or the corporate "mucky-mucks".  Whatever name you use to make you feel down trodden and beaten on.  All the while you are using language to do to yourself what you envision someone ELSE is doing to you. 

First question to ask yourself is "what makes me happy?" The next question is "What do I do to obtain it?" The last question is "what do I do to prevent me from obtaining it?" 

What Makes Me Happy?

Well a lot of people would say (in private) Money. If I have lots of money I will be happy.  Others who are more "touchy feely" would say family(my wife and my children make me happy) and still others who consider themselves esoteric would say "happiness just IS man". The latter is not far from the reality. Though maybe obtained by an "out of reality" state of mind. 

Now once the head is clear of the fog, *cough cough* Happy is defined by each person. from the simple times of being an infant to the more complex states as an adult. As a baby happiness was defined by am I full, is my diaper comfortable and am I entertained by that big person making the goo goo sounds all the time. Our connection to those 3 things don't actually stray far away as we get older.  We look for them in more complex states but are fundamentally the same. 
  1. "Am I full of really delicious food that makes me feel akin to the joy I felt from strained carrots as a baby?"
  2. "Do I feel comfortable with the way these clothes fit me?"
  3.  "Am I important to those people so they like me?"
These seem to me through observation of self and others in my life over the last 40 years, to be fundamentally true to all people. We may feel like the list is bigger but at its core are these three things. Put them in a pot and you have a bowl of happy.


What do I do to obtain it?

For the most part we define our happiness by the things we have versus what others have. Better known as the "Haves & Have Nots." To obtain those things we require the means to obtain them. For most that is money.  For others... A team, some planning and a fast getaway. Most in those cases need a good lawyer.  But I digress. SOOooo, Off to work we go. why? we WANT money to get those things we say we NEED to make us feel happy. Some define it as a JOB which is not the same as a career.  Far from it. Why? That's another definition of happiness which we equate to the formula. I go to work at a JOB where I'm not appreciated, the boss hates me, and my co-workers are a-holes. A career is a path made with time and conscious choice.  Because we are good at something we took the time to get BETTER at it. Either through post secondary education OR started our own business with our base talent. We like it and produces results. Lot's of THOSE people are happy even though they may work 14-18 hours a DAY. Where the 9-5er is well... NOT.  There is a pattern here and I hope you are starting to see it.

"What do I do to prevent me from obtaining it?"

Self destruction is a major unseen force in most peoples lives. By definition you can't see it so how do you know I'm telling the truth?   Think back to goals you've truly wanted to reach in your life. Did you want to be an engineer? Did you want to climb K2 or sail around the world? Did you want to start a restaurant or invent a problem solving device or software? Whatever it is, did you then feel it was impossible to achieve or beyond you to do? Have you done the steps needed to succeed towards your goal.  When you were "getting there" did you then find a reason to stop or procrastinate the next steps? Fear is a major factor in self destruction.  We look at successful people and see they get to do more and buy more but then we also see the epic collapses. So does that crush our will? It certainly confirms our fears.  It may not seem like fear but it is. Fear of success.  There are SO many quotes you can bandy about... "Failure is not an option", "success is measured by out failures", or "there is nothing to fear but fear itself." That's a few I like but does it help?  Only if and when you are willing to open up to the thought that succeeding is OK. My favourite quote is from a very VERY famous Muppet. "NO! TRY NOT! Do or do not. There is no try!"

OK so obviously this was written by George Lucas. But now look at my reference. How did HE do it? He started the same as you and I. He didn't SPRING into being as "THE GEORGE LUCAS".  He was born, (fed, diapered, and played with) Raised and cared for as we were.

One day he had his life shattered from it comfort and cruising. He was in a car accident that should have taken his life.  He survived and went from cruising to driving his life. In an interview with Academy Of Achievement he said "Well I'm here, and every day now is an extra day. I've been given an extra day so I've got to make the most of it." He is speaking of his thoughts after He had his reality reborn. In a car accident that should have taken his life. Suddenly improbable became not only probable but anything he wanted was now possible. All this when he was only a teen.

Do you have to have a "near death" moment to adjust your thoughts to the path probability instead of impossibility? No.

HAPPINESS IS WHAT YOU MAKE IT.

Failure to move forward is like addiction. You CAN kick it. You just have to find bottom before life does it for you. Believe me it will.

Look at the people around you have garnered success in the face of seeming adversity but also are truly happy.  Can you name any?  Can you see any?  Tough isn't it. We are guided by the three principles of our infancy. We just don't know how to get them as an adult.  One thing is for certain. if you (ready for the next saying?) "Never do you will never succeed". Right so, I modified it to match my earlier quote but if it goes then it follows that this is more truth. To TRY is permission to walk away or even to stop when it gets too hard. Don't get me wrong. Failure will happen and I believe our successes are only measured by our failures.  Without them we can never truly appreciate what it means TO succeed.

So now change the statements we made earlier. When a belief no longer works for us we have to accept that to succeed we must change our beliefs. 

"I have to go to work." leaves you with no power and seemingly without choice. so now TAKE responsibility. I WANT money so I can ... pay my bills, have the roof over my head, food in my belly and the clothes that not only are comfortable but people will see me in. I will make a great impression. Therefore I WANT to go to work. Now let that sink in.

Once the power is yours you can make choices that move you to happiness instead of disfranchised misery. Now when you envision a career it doesn't seem so impossible. 

Here is the hardest part (at least for me) don't PROCRASTINATE! Every time I have ever completed a task either self assigned or not, I have felt amazing and energized.  Every article I now type and post gives me a sense of accomplishment.  Every page and chapter I complete in my stories pump me up.  Do I fall down, get lost, drag my feet?  SURE! but the key is getting back up.  I know that I have support in my life. Sometimes it's from family and sometimes it's from within. 
Just remember the old adage, "You don't know what you've got till it's gone." Don't wait. Don't fawn over "things". They are just things. Appreciate what you have.  The rest only matters if you think it makes you happy. Does it?  Do things make you happy? 


Or is it just Food, Comfort, and someone who goes goo goo over you.


Yours in Clay & Water

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