Do you ever wonder why lasting happiness seems to have found a place in those around you, but not in your life? Your days are about to change! In this episode Jimmy shares ideas to achieving and retaining lasting happiness in your life.
- The formula for reaching lasting success and greater happiness with one simple change in your daily life.
- Why it is critical for you to smile more often.
- How your brain functions on limited resources and how you can maximize their benefits to fit your desired attitude.
- Why “Have, Do, Be” must be reversed to “Be, Do, Have” for you to truly realize happiness in life.
- How to use the “next actions” approach to accomplishing your biggest goals and challenges in life.
Good morning! This has been one of the best weeks. I want to tell you, this is Monday morning, and I’m going to predict that you will have the best week you’ve experienced in your life. If you will just follow these simple recommendations of today’s episode, you will see a change in your life that others will seek out.
Hey, good morning. This is Jimmy Williams for Live A Life By Design, your Monday morning moments of motivation, and I will share with you today a secret, and I mean a secret, that I use to make my life so happy. You’re going to laugh and you’re going to say, “Oh gosh, this is just one of those happy stories. He’s going to tell us all of these people that are happy and I am just not feeling happy.” Well, I’m going to give you three simple steps today that will bring about not just today’s happiness, but a lifetime of happiness if you’ll simply implement, and that’s the secret to that process, implement these three steps.
People create a difficult pathway to reach happiness in their lives. Being happy seems to be a target few of us can reach in the modern era. I met a phenomenal man once who specializes in the study of happiness and he made such a dramatic impact on my life, I had to do further research on him. His name is Shawn Achor and he is one of the world’s leading experts on human potential. He was trained in positive psychology and has authored two of my favorite books on the subject of happiness. The first one is titled “The Happiness Advantage” and his second book in 2013 was “Before Happiness.” These books can be found on our livealifeby.design website. Look under Jimmy’s top reads. I don’t make any money off these. I just want to help spread some kindness and spread some happiness here. Click on there. You will locate the books on Amazon and buy them. It is going to change your life. But I digress.
After reading his books, I discovered that most people have the three words “have, do, be” in reverse to create a state of happiness. I’ll reveal the proper order of these words later in the show. First, let’s understand what happiness means. The word itself connotates a state of mind. If happiness is the abstract state of mind we all know, why do we look for it in material goods? We attract into our lives what we are. If you are happy, you will attract other happy people. If you are successful, you will attract more success. If you are kind, you will attract kindness. You get the picture? We tend to attract what we are projecting to those around us. Have you ever found yourself with a person that is depressed, unkind, even manic, perhaps? How did you feel? Did you notice your own emotions becoming more dark, less confident? Happiness is truly different for each of us. Truth be told, I am happy 99% of the time because I want to be. Did you catch that? 99% of the time, I am in a very happy state of mind simply because I want to be.
You can and must control your mindset to achieve a state of happiness. You can allow positive, powerful messages of inspiration into your mind, which will create that state of happiness you seek. Or conversely, you can fill your mind with negative thoughts from the news, gossip from people around you or generally unhappy people, and you will begin to exhibit the same negative tendencies. For many years, the field of psychology was led to believe that happiness orbited around success. However, due to breakthroughs in the research of positive psychology, we are learning the opposite is true. When we are happy, when our mindset and mood are positive, we are smarter, more motivated and more successful. Happiness is the center, and success revolves around it. It is just the opposite of what we had thought all of our lives.
For example, there are many people, musicians, actors, even entrepreneurs that have sought nothing in their life but monetary success, to the wealth that they always dreamed that had evaded them throughout life to finally attain it and then still be unhappy. Now, you’ve heard me say before that money is not bad. Money is not evil. However, money is a magnifier. If you are happy in life before you have money, you will simply be more happy with it. Now, I understand what you’re saying, “Well, Jimmy, I’d like to be in on this experiment. Does anyone want to give me a million dollars and let me see if I am more happy with the million dollar than I am without it?” Well, I see several hands probably going up if I were in a room, right? I will say to you though, that if you aren’t progressing in your career, your family life, or any domain of life you choose, the best method of changing your performance is to change your mindset. Our brains’ resources are limited.
Now, if you speak with my wife, she may say my brain is even more limited than most, but I will tell you that this limited energy can only be used as the day progresses. So we choose to use this energy for positive or negative purposes. Because of this limitation, you can focus on pain, negativity, stress, and uncertainty, or use these limited resources to focus on gratitude, hope, resilience, optimism, and meaning. You are lying to yourself, but you must know to be truthful, what you put in your mind is what your mind will give you back. But the truth is you are not lying to yourself if you tell yourself, by channeling your energies in a manner that allows the resources to be expanded throughout your body, to empower you to greater performance by simply using positive statements. So the first step to have, do, be is to focus your limited brain resources on positives that will bring about greater achievement and productivity in your life. It’s just that simple. So you have a choice to make in step one. Do you want to focus on the negative around you, or do you want to focus on the positives in your life?
The second step of this process to pursuing and finding lasting happiness is for you to remember the movie, “Zorro.” Okay. I know it’s been a few years, so allow me to help remind you of this wonderful movie that I’ve enjoyed many times. Let me set the scene for you. At this point, the young student, Alejandro, who has nothing but vengeance in his heart from the death of his brother being killed, he has nothing on his mind, but rehavocing that vengeance on the Mexican government. He wishes to, in some way, take over the dynasty and let them know that he is unhappy, but he ran across someone that helped him channel in a more positive direction, this energy. As Alejandro ran into Don Diego, the original Zorro, he taught Alejandro, the student, how to fight within small circles.
If you remember this scene, he had some very small circles that built into a larger circle and then even larger circles. So it had kind of a ripple effect from the center if you can imagine. So Alejandro is standing there in this much smaller circle and every time he got out of that small circle, he would be whipped literally with a horsewhip to put back in that circle. So what he was teaching him is that the circle you stand in will be your world, your whole life. Until I tell you otherwise, there is nothing outside of it. Now, what he was doing was planting in the mind of this young student, filled with hate and revenge, he was helping fill his mind with the controlling mindset that everything he needed to be successful in, whatever he wished to achieve was in that circle. In other words, it was all up to him. Alejandro had to master the small circle to be allowed to move through the larger circle and continued his training until such time that he had mastered all that Diego could teach him.
So the second step to me is called the Zorro circle. You see, by limiting your focus to small manageable goals, you can expand your sphere of power tremendously. Small changes over time create gigantic accomplishments. There are many sayings that I’ve heard regarding this approach. You’ve probably have heard them as well, “Eat the elephant one bite at a time,” or I like this one, “Inch by inch. Anything is a cinch.” Don’t think about the giant outcome of your goal, but rather, the next action needed to move forward on the project. This is something that I do quite frequently. When a multi hour or, goodness, even a multi-day project arises in our company, I assemble the team and I paint vividly the vision for what the project should look like when we’re done for us to realize it as a success. After the team is excited to kick off the project, I give them only the first step to move the project in the direction we wish to go.
After successful completion of this, “next action,” the team is pumped even more to move forward on the project and we complete this process over and over until we’re done. Think about the assembly line approach for automobiles. Now, one of the most fascinating YouTube videos I have ever seen, and I highly recommend you look at it, is the robotic assembly line for Tesla electric cars. This assembly line, when you watch the video, shows very few humans on that assembly line and in most cases, you’ll see robotic arms moving the process of building the car down the assembly line until finished at the end. The people who start this process of the assembly line and the people who inspect the finished product doesn’t see one another while performing their responsible tasks. One of my favorite Bruce Lee quotes is, “I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.” This mastery of the kick is what gives power to the opponent of Bruce Lee. So think about your mastery of small steps to achieve the big, hairy, audacious goals that will give you success in life. This second step is, think of Zorro, taking that next action, that small step to gain momentum, and once we have momentum, we have achievement.
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Well, the third and final step to achieving happiness is to transfer your positive reality to others. Now, I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking, “Wait a minute, this sounds totally counterproductive,” but by giving away your positive mindset through kind words, acts of kindness, simply smiling, allows those around you to become infected with your positive attitude. Think about your day to day, pay close attention to the facial expressions of those around you. Now, plant a big genuine smile on your face and walk around with it all day today. In your journal tonight, write down what you observed. Did you see people changing their frowns to smiles? Did you notice their eyebrows soften and roll upward, allowing their eyes to widen in anticipation of a smile themselves? This may sound silly, but life situations often are. People cannot remain sad and hold a precious newborn baby in their arms at the same time. To me, it is inconceivable how that would happen. The precious gift of life newly formed in that baby brings your mind a very big jolt of happiness and positivity. So be whatever you want to be.
These three words are going to help you with understanding the truth to happiness. So I haven’t forgotten about these three words, but I wanted to give you a little background before we got to them. The words were: have, do, be. Now, all of the previous information provided in this podcast episode is the background for the use and meaning of these three simple words. Three words, single syllables: have, do, be. You see, people think they must have money before they can do vacation, so they can be happy. So think about what I just said. You think you must have something before you can do something so you can be some way. Well, I believe the truth of this is that you must reverse this process to realize that true and lasting success and happiness. I believe you should be whatever you want to be. You should start doing what you want to do. You will have all that you require to live and be successful and happy by following those previous two sentences and suggestions. Be whatever you want to be. Start doing what you want to do. The challenge this week is a simple one, but you may find it even more difficult than you thought. This week, practice smiling a little each day and watch those around you notice the difference. Happiness is just a few small practices every day until it becomes a way of life. Go ahead, live your life by your own design and happiness will truly follow you.