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MUELLER: Happiness is closer than you think

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By Bob Mueller

Your success in business, sports, friendship, love, and nearly every enterprise you attempt is largely determined by your own self-image.
People who have confidence in their personal worth seem to be magnets for success and happiness.
Good things drip into their laps regularly, their relationships are long-lasting, and their projects are usually carried to completion.
To use the imagery of the English Romantic poet William Blake, they “catch joy on the wing.”
Conversely, some people seem to be magnets for failure and unhappiness.
Their plans go awry; they have a way of torpedoing their own potential successes, and nothing seems to work out for them.
Problems such as these usually stem from a difficulty with self-acceptance.
Once they are able to gain more confidence, these people often find their troubles take care of themselves.
I believe that anyone can change his or her self-perception.
A person with a low self-image is not doomed to a life of unhappiness and failure.
It’s possible to get rid of negative attitudes and gain the healthy confidence needed to realize one’s dreams.
From now on, get the most out of yourself and be up around people you love.
Replace negative thoughts with a positive focus.
No more moaning.
No more complaining.
No more grumbling.
These things will no more issue from your lips.
You are, from now on, the positive one, the perpetually cheerful, always up one around whom good things revolve and happen.
When asked how you are, instead of saying, “Can’t complain, mustn’t grumble,” in the future you will say, “Fine, good, marvelous.”
No matter how crummy you feel, no matter what sort of day you’ve had, no matter how low, down or fed up you are.
And do you know the interesting thing is that when you do say, “Marvelous,” even if you don’t feel it, you’ll find something positive to say to follow it up with.
If you’d said, “Been better,” then the follow-up thoughts would be all negative.
Try it – honestly, it really works.
In the future, right from today, from this very second, you have to become the one who is always jolly, up, cheerful.
Why? Someone has to, or everybody will want to end it all.
This life is hard and treacherous.
Someone has to lift the burden, lift the spirits, and lift the gloom.
So who’s it going to be? You, that’s who.
I know.
You’ll be sitting there reading this, thinking, “Why me? Why lay this burden on me?” Because you can do it, that’s why.
Do it secretly, without fuss or bother.
It’s just a simple change of heart, change of direction.
From now on you cannot be anything but up around those you love.
Okay, moan to strangers.
But loved ones get the full treatment.
Up, up and away.
Successful people, those who have got it licked, are invariably cheerful.
They care more about what people around them are going through, feeling, and suffering than their own petty problems.
They invariably want to know what’s wrong with you rather than moaning about their day.
They think positively, act positively, project confidence, verve and enthusiasm.
I had a friend who went to live abroad in a country where she spoke very little of the language.
She said her mood lifted whenever she was there because she didn’t know the words for fed up or miserable or down.
When someone asked her how she was, she could only say “Happy,” because that was the only word she knew to reply with.
She found that when she said it, she felt it.

Bob Mueller is the assistant vice president of mission and stewardship at Hosparus.
The views expressed in this column are those of the writer.