Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.
Yesterday I shared with you that I thought success should defined as living a well-rounded life that is not centered on wealth and the acquisition of material goods, but rather on living a life that includes pleasures often overlooked by those driving themselves in their search for more. How often do you take time for yourself, how often do you go out to find things that would make your life more interesting, more fun and more enjoyable? Too many of us sit and wait for pleasure to come to us rather than going to where it is abundant. The clock keeps ticking and while some are too worn out from the race to have fun others seem to be too lazy to get up and enjoy it all, meanwhile the rest of us enjoy almost everyday.
Here are a few thoughts from Marc Chernoff that are worth your consideration, I would stick around while you read it but I am going out to play.
Things You Do NOT Need to Be Happy
As adults we somehow grow into the belief that we need everything to be a certain way in order to find and appreciate moments of happiness. But the truth is, to be happy we need much less than we think we need. In fact, I believe one of the best feelings comes when you realize that you can be perfectly OK and happy without the things you once thought you needed:
The happiest people do not live with a certain set of circumstances, but rather with a certain set of attitudes. Choosing to be positive and grateful for what you have now is going to determine how you’re going to live the rest of your life. So look for something positive about today. Even if you have to look a little harder than usual, it still exists.
The biggest prison you will likely ever live in is your fear of what other people think. You cannot let other people tell you who you are or what you want. You have to decide that for yourself. When you’re making big decisions, remember what you think of yourself and your life is more important than what people think of you. Don’t let others make you feel guilty for living your life. It’s YOUR life. As long as you’re not hurting anyone else, live it YOUR way.
A perfect past.
Do not let the shadows of your past darken the doorstep of your present and future. Let go, forgive and move forward. Just because the past didn’t turn out like you had hoped, doesn’t mean your future can’t be better than you had envisioned. In fact, we often grow stronger in the places we were once broken. Most of the time the only difference between long-term happiness and long-term despair is not quitting on yourself. As long as you are breathing it’s never too late. Today is a new beginning.
Full control of life’s constant changes.
Life is constantly changing and we’re changing with it. We’re not the same person we were a year ago, a month ago, or a week ago. Life’s cycle doesn’t stop. Change is what it’s all about. But every ending is the beginning of something else. Every exit is an entry somewhere else. Live, learn, and let go. Don’t hold yourself down with the changes you can’t control.
A carefree, stress-free life.
Great challenges make life interesting; overcoming them makes life meaningful. Don’t wait until everything is just right; it will never be perfect. There will always be challenges, obstacles and less than perfect conditions. So what! Get started now! With each step you take, you will grow stronger and stronger, more skilled, more confident, and more successful.
A mountain of money.
If we counted our blessings more often, instead of our money, we would be a lot richer. Keep money on your mind but out of your heart. Never get so busy making a living that you forget to make a life for yourself. Cultivate your spiritual growth. The real measure of your wealth is how much you’d be worth if you lost all your money.
The bottom line is that you can’t be happy unless you’re unhappy sometimes. Life is not always perfect, and the utopian world of constant happiness in not natural, nor should you expect it.
Live every day of your life in full. Experience the highs and the lows, the positives and the negatives, and all the moods present between the various extremes. Don’t focus on simply being happy. Focus on living a well-rounded, seasoned life. Focus on achieving completeness. Yes, happiness is part of this completeness, but so is sadness, difficulty, frustration, and failure. And overcoming these latter points supports your personal growth far more than constant happiness.
The definition of success to me is not necessarily a price tag, not fame, but having a good life, and being able to say I did the right thing at the end of the day.
A man once asked his Rabbi to Explain the meaning of “Talmudic Reasoning.”
The Rabbi replied: “Well, it’s not too easy to explain, but I think I can demonstrate it to you and you will get the point. I will ask you a simple question and you give the answer. Are you ready?”
The man was ready, so the Rabbi continued: “Imagine that two men come out of a chimney, one is dirty, the other clean. Which one takes a bath?” The intrigued listener immediately replied: “That’s easy, Rabbi. The dirty one takes the bath.”
“Not so,” said the Rabbi. “The Talmud would explain that when the men came out, the dirty one looked at the clean one and saw a clean face. Meanwhile the clean one looked at the dirty one and saw a dirty face.”
A knowing look, complete with broad smile, flashed onto the man’s face. The Rabbi continued, “Now tell me which one takes the bath?” The answer was quick and sure. “Now I get it Rabbi, the clean one takes the bath!”
The Rabbi looked just a bit unhappy, but he answered patiently, “No. You see, the Talmud would go on to ask: ‘How could two men come out of a chimney and one be clean and the other dirty?”
“A sobering thought: What if, right at this very moment, I am living up to my full potential?”
One afternoon, a woman was in her back yard hanging the laundry when an old, tired-looking dog wandered into the yard. The woman could tell from the dog’s collar and well-fed belly that he had a home. But when she walked into the house, the dog followed her, sauntered down the hall and fell asleep in a corner. An hour later, he went to the door, and the woman let him out.
The next day the dog was back. He resumed his position in the hallway and slept for an hour. This continued for several weeks. Curious, the woman pinned a note to his collar: “Every afternoon, your dog comes to my house for a nap.”
The next day he arrived with a different note pinned to his collar: “We have ten children. He’s trying to catch up on his sleep.
“Any married man should forget his mistakes. There’s no point in two people remembering the same thing…”
“When parents talk about the depression of the empty nest, they’re not mourning the passing of all those wet towels on the floor, or the music that numbs your teeth, or even the bottle of capless shampoo dribbling down the shower drain. They’re upset because they have gone from supervisor of a child’s life to spectator. It’s like being the vice-president of the United States.”
Sometimes it takes a wake-up call, doesn’t it, to alert us to the fact that we’re hurrying through our lives instead of actually living them; that we’re living the fast life instead of the good life. And I think, for many people, that wake-up call takes the form of an illness.
Stay well, do good work, and have fun.
Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies. The editor is somewhat senile.
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