“Doing what you like is freedom. Liking what you do is happiness.”
One of things that comes with retirement is more time to reflect on our choices. I don’t mean just the “what am I going to today” choices but also how do I chose to see my world.
Lately I have not been as involved in the activities open to me as I once was. I miss the action but more importantly I miss the fellowship that comes with sharing experiences with friends and acquaintances. I plan to reengage as my health improves but I know I will never be able to do all the things I use to do.
I know that I do not have to sacrifice happiness because of lifestyle changes, I just have stay aware of what makes me happy. As I thought about my options remembered a piece written by Marc Chernoff that dealt with happiness opportunities and as usual I found his thoughts to be useful. Here are excerpts from his article that you might find interesting
Habits of Highly Happy People
Be a Part of Something You Believe In – This could be anything. People may take an active role in their local city council, find refuge in religious faith, join a social club supporting causes they believe in, or find passion in their careers. In each case the physiological outcome is the same. They engage themselves in something they strongly believe in. This engagement brings happiness and meaning into their lives.
Share Time with Friends and Family – A happy life is a life shared with friends and family. The stronger the personal relationships are and the higher the frequency of interaction, the happier a person will be.
Reflect on the Good – Quite often people concentrate too much of their attention on negative outcomes and leave no time to positively reflect on their successes. A continuous general awareness of your daily successes can have a noticeably positive affect on your overall emotional happiness.
Exploit the Resources You DO Have Access To – The average person is usually astonished when they see a physically handicap person show intense signs of emotional happiness. How could someone in such a restricted physical state be so happy? The answer rests in how they use the resources they do have. Stevie Wonder couldn’t see, so he exploited his sense of hearing into a passion for music, and he now has 25 Grammy Awards to prove it.
Use Personal Strengths to Get Things Done – Everyone possesses unique personal strengths. We all have different talents and skill sets. Emotional happiness comes naturally to those who use their strengths to get things done.
Savor the Natural Joy of Simple Pleasures – I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, the best things in life are free. They come in the form of simple pleasures and they appear right in front of you at various locations and arbitrary times. It’s all about taking a moment to notice the orange and pink sunset reflecting off the pond water as you hold hands with someone you love. Noticing these moments and taking part in them regularly will bring unpredictable bursts of happiness into your life.
Every now and then, when the world sits just right,
a gentle breath of heaven fills my soul with delight…
Hazelmarie “Mattie” Elliott
Bubba and Billy Bob, who are from Tennessee, travel to Kentucky to visit a relative. They are walking along the street, and they see a sign on a store which reads, “Suits $5.00 each, shirts $2.00 each, trousers $2.50 per pair.”
Bubba says to his pal, “Billy Bob, “Look here! We could buy a whole gob of these, take ’em back to Tennessee, sell ’em to our friends, and make a fortune. Now when we go in there, you be quiet, okay? Just let me do the talkin’ ’cause if they hear your accent, they might think we’re ignorant, and not wanna sell that stuff to us. Now, I’ll talk in a slow Kentucky drawl so’s they don’t know.”
They go in and Bubba says with his best fake Kentucky drawl, “I’ll take 50 of them suits at $5.00 each, 100 of them there shirts at $2.00 each, and 50 pairs of them there trousers at $2.50 each. I’ll back up my pickup and …….”
The owner of the shop interrupts, “Ya’ll are from Tennessee, ain’t yah?”
“Well…yeah,” says a surprised Bubba……… “How come you know that?”
The owner says, “Because this is a dry-cleaners.”
“There’s an old saying – There’s No Place Like Home. Well, I went in the house next door, and it was very similar.”
A young man called his mother and announced excitedly that he had just met the woman of his dreams. He asked her about what he should do next. His mother had an idea:
“Why don’t you send her flowers, and on the card invite her to your place for a home-cooked meal?”
He thought this was a great strategy and arranged a date for a week later. His mother called the day after the big date to see how things had gone.
“Oh, mom, the evening was a disaster,” he moaned.
“Why…….didn’t she come over?” asked his mother.
“Oh, she came over alright………but she refused to cook…”
Why are a wise man and a wise guy opposites?
An employment interviewer for a big company in New York was talking to an attractive young woman applying for a job. Looking over the application form, the interviewer noticed that the girl had not answered one important question concerning transportation to and from work.
“What about your bus line?” the interviewer asked her.
“I don’t believe I mentioned it,” came the pleased reply, “but it’s a 36C.”
“Live your life and forget your age.”
Norman Vincent Peale
A couple with their four-year-old son was dining at one of San Francisco’s sophisticated restaurants. “What do you suggest for a little boy who likes nothing but hamburgers, hot dogs, and tacos?” asked the mother.
“Los Angeles or San Diego,” sniffed the waiter.
Of all the people I have met, you are certainly one.
An aspiring young actor asked a young lady’s father if he could have his daughter’s hand in marriage. The father said, “I would never let my daughter marry an actor.”
The actor said, “Sir, I think you may change your mind if you see me perform. Won’t you at least come and see the play?”
So the father went to see the play, and the next day he called the actor, “You were right. I did change my mind. Go ahead and marry my daughter. You’re no actor.”
A government which robs Peter to pay Paul can always depend on the support of Paul.
George Bernard Shaw
Esther broke-up with her boyfriend. She asked her Mother’s advice about returning the gifts he’d given her.
Without a pause, her Mother replied: “Send back the stuffed animals and letters, but keep the jewelry for sentimental reasons.”
“If you look to others for fulfillment, you will never be fulfilled. If your happiness depends on money, you will never be happy with yourself. Be content with what you have; rejoice in the way things are. When you realize there is nothing lacking, the world belongs to you.”
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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