Tag Archives: Happiness

Questions to Ask Yourself On Making Tough Life Decisions

I think we can all agree that life can be a real b*tch at times, as it puts us in situations that require us to make difficult decisions – decisions that, no matter what, would entail heartache, headache, or both. Some of them require a true sacrifice, while others involve big risks.

To help you deal with such trying moments in your life, here are four questions you could and should ask yourself before making the final decision. I hope at the end of the list, you will find the answer that is already in your heart and make the right and best choice. So here we go:

1. “What does my heart say?”

Listen to your heart. Breathe in, breathe out, and listen. If it doesn’t work, try a few more times. Close your eyes, breathe in, breathe out, and listen… Don’t focus on the big mess of thoughts in your head right now. Focus on what your gut feeling tells you. Find that answer and hold on to it.

Always trust your instinct. I’m not saying that your parents’ or your friends’ advice and suggestions are bad for you – and we should always be appreciative of the love and concern from our loved ones, no matter how much they may bug us – but at the end of the day, it is you who knows yourself best.

You are the one who truly understand what you want and what you do not want. Deep down, you know what’s best for yourself.

This is your life. You must be its dictator. Don’t let someone else do your thinking and soul searching for you. The responsibility to seek the truth inside your heart lies in your hands. Don’t let other people’s guesses about your life, or your future, sway or mislead you. Use your own intuition.

It is not always easy to listen to your heart, and it works differently for different people. For some, the best way to do so is to go out for a quiet walk alone; the peace helps them sieve out the more significant things in their minds. For others, running or hitting the gym, and experiencing the pain and the weakening of the physical body, helps to clear up their heads. (This is why many athletes are such clear-headed, focused and determined people.) In any way, always listen to your heart.


2. “What am I afraid of?”

Difficult decisions come with high stakes. When there is much to gain, there is much to lose. Ask yourself: What am I afraid of losing? Is it money? Love? Reputation? Dignity? Popularity?

Or is it because you’re afraid of disappointment, to lose hope in yourself if you fail? Sometimes we are afraid of making big decisions that involve huge changes in our lives because we fear that if we do fail, we might not be able to pick ourselves up again.

To counter this fear, you need to accept that we all fall from grace from time to time. Know that no one is invincible, or immune to a little misstep here and there, and occasionally, a huge one. We are all humans, not gods. Well, even angels and gods can fall from power.

And yet, as ordinary people, each of us possesses a special gift: the resilience of the human spirit – the ability to bounce back each time we fall. Fall down seven times; stand up eight. When life knocks you down, stand back up and keep trying.

Sometimes, we don’t wish to be the one making the decision also because we are afraid that if we were to be wrong, the responsibility of it all falls solely on us. There is no one else to blame, no one else to point the finger at. However, you should also realize that everyone makes mistake.

No one is perfect, or 100% right all the time. Yes, there would be a price to pay if you fail, but then again, you would also gain something in return: a lesson. Allow yourself to make mistakes. Think of it as meant to be. Be determined to get something out of the decision and the experience that follows, whether you succeed or fail, rise or fall.

A Japanese proverb reads: “Anzuru yori umu ga yasushi.” Its literal meaning is that giving birth to a baby is easier than worrying about it. What it serves to explain is that the fear you experience is probably greater than the danger itself. Your attempt is likely to be easier than expected. So if you are afraid, then do it afraid. Trust me, courage will follow.


3. “Who/what am I doing this for?”

You have to figure this out right from the start. This is what will anchor you during the fight and the struggle following the moment the decision is made. This is what you will go back to, again and again, whenever you feel discouraged, disappointed or hopeless.

Is it just for passion? Is it also for money, or success? Is there something else? Often, our bigger goals are combined with other small or hidden goals, which we fail to perceive or choose to ignore. Never let yourself be denied of the truth that is already inside you.

One day the suppressed truth will pop up when you least expect it and tell you that everything you’ve worked for is done on the basis of a lie you tell yourself. So be honest with yourself. Know who you are and what you want. Take this as a learning process to get to know yourself better as a person.

When you know what you want, make it your goal. Focus your mind on it, and be happy about it. Remember: Positive emotions will put positive energies towards your goal. This positivity will make your journey towards achieving this goal smoother, as it will attract other good things along the way.

The law of attraction can work in many mysterious ways. Make a conscious effort to stop worrying. Think about the good things, not the worst-case scenarios.

You don’t always need to take great leaps of faith. Sometimes, it’s the baby steps that matter. Take one step at a time; take each day as it comes. There is no shortcut to success. If you want it, you’re going to have to work for it. But always keep in mind: Enjoy life, not endure it.


4. “If I don’t do this now, will I regret in the future?”

Yes, regrets. We all hate regrets because regret makes us feel empty, like something is amiss in our life. Regret makes us feel like we have done something that we shouldn’t have, or we haven’t done something that we should have. Regret makes you wish that you could turn back time, so there’s a second chance for you to make things right.

Regret can be addictive, because it puts us in a cycle in which we imagine the could-haves, and then become disappointed upon realizing the impossibility of them becoming real. To relieve ourselves of the pain, we go back to imagining again because then, in our minds, we feel powerful and in control once more.

For every decision you make, there is an opportunity cost. Simply put, in life, you win some; you lose some. You can’t have everything. This especially applies to time. You do not have all the time in the world. Life is short. I say this because life is unpredictable; one day you are here and the next you could be gone.

Well, the truth is, we don’t have full control over everything, even if we’d like to think that we do. Lost chances can keep us up all night because they prove that things can come and go without our approval, or without us being at all prepared for their departure. An opportunity does not need your permission before slipping right through your fingers.

When you choose to stay in your comfort zone instead of stepping out of it, you might miss out on an opportunity that will not come by a second time in your life. In the worst of scenarios, regret leads us to hate ourselves. Our lack of courage and prudence makes us feel so small and so incapable of achieving something bigger than our present self.

Regret is a powerful emotion that can topple even the most spirited person. Do not let regret into your life. Let the could-haves be. What is in the past is exactly that, in the past. It cannot be changed.

At the end of the day, we all want to be winners in life. We want to know that we have made the right decisions. Success is a matter of perception, just as happiness is. They are both very subjective. Keep in mind that no decision is purely good, or bad. No matter what decision you make in the end, believe that it is your best choice. Choose to be positive and confident about it.

In ending, I’ll leave you with a quote from Paulo Coelho:

“When we least expect it, life sets us a challenge to test our courage and willingness to change; at such a moment, there is no point in pretending that nothing has happened or in saying that we are not yet ready. The challenge will not wait. Life does not look back. A week is more than enough time for us to decide whether or not to accept our destiny.”

 Listen to your heart. Be bold. Set a goal. Take a chance.

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The 20 Things You Need To Stop Doing To Yourself

We are our own greatest enemy. We doubt ourselves, complicate our lives, cloud our minds with unimportant thoughts and negativity, we punish ourselves, hate ourselves and then feel sorry for ourselves because “outside forces” are making our lives a living hell. Life is beautiful — you’re making yours a living hell all on your own. Each of us does things from time to time that make living happily more difficult than it needs to be.

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Surely some of us have it difficult because those are the cards that we’re dealt, but most of us — especially those who are better off financially and don’t live on the streets — make our very own lives more difficult for ourselves. But there are things you can do to stop the miserable cycle that you have found yourself in…

1. Stop Running From Your Problems and Procrastinating.

Problems don’t go away on their own. You can either make them go away or live with them. If you know you can’t live with them, then don’t procrastinate because the weight of them on your mind only increases over time. If you have a problem, then accept that you have a problem and face it — deal with it. Life is a long list of problems that must be overcome.

2. Stop Lying To Yourself.

People will lie to you left and right throughout your life; don’t add to the pile of lies. It is one thing for others to be lying to you and an entirely different issue if you’re lying to yourself. You are the only person that you can trust…but if you have a habit of lying to yourself, then you can’t even trust yourself. You have to be able to rely on yourself and on what you believe.

If you know something to be false, then stop convincing yourself that it is or could possibly be true. Improbable is one thing, but impossible is another.

3. Stop Living In The Past.

Yesterday was yesterday — it’s gone and will never again be. Everyone carries emotional baggage with them. Some of us carry the weight of a depressing past while others live in those happy long-gone moments that we consider to have been the best of our lives. You can reminisce if you’d like as long as you don’t forget that your reality exists only in the present.

It can be a dangerous thing to dwell on the past. Nostalgia can overcome us and make us feel that the world we are living in today falls short of the happiness we experienced in the past. Other times we will punish ourselves for mistakes that we have done and dwell in the negativity and bad feelings that we had. Whatever the case, be wary of focusing on past events and do your best to live in the moment.

4. Stop Attempting To Buy Happiness.

I’ve tried; it doesn’t work. You can buy drinks, buy drugs, buy sex, buy trips, buy experiences, buy toys and clothes…none of it will make you happy — at least not past the day that you buy them. I always revert to Paulo Coelho on this matter: happiness must be something attainable by each and every person no matter what his or her circumstance. If the poorest of the poor can be happy, then happiness cannot lie in the material.

5. Stop Relying On Others.

People have their own lives filled with their own headaches, own problems, own mishaps and own successes. Friendship is great, but often doesn’t weather the storm. Be self-reliant. Be independent. We all find ourselves alone at several points throughout our lives. If you find yourself on your lonesome and don’t know how to deal with it because you are used to having constant support, then you will drown.

6. Stop Fearing Failure.

Failure is such a derogatory term… I don’t understand why. Failing is learning in the real world. There is only so much that you can read up about the way the world works, but true knowledge comes from experience. And no one gets it right the first time around. You failed. Great. Try it again. And again. And again. The more times you get it wrong, the more ways you know NOT to do it.

7. Stop Doing The Same Thing Over And Over, Expecting Different Results.

At the same time, don’t keep making the same mistakes and expecting different results. If you tried something one way and it didn’t work, then guess what will happen when you try again exactly in the same manner? Failure is only good if you learn from it. Otherwise it really is just failure.

8. Stop Rejecting Prospective Partners Because Of Your Past Sh*tty Relationships.

You fell in love and had your heart broken; we all have. Luckily for you, now that you have experienced the pain of a broken heart, you have fully experienced the love cycle and can grow as an individual. Relationships, like the rest of life, are learning experiences. Don’t generalize and make yourself believe that all relationships end in heartache because that doesn’t have to be the case. Ultimately, you and your partner decide whether or not the relationship will work. Check your baggage at the door.

9. Stop Feeling Sorry For Yourself.

Life is tough for everyone. The richest of the rich have problems. The poorest of the poor have problems. We make problems for ourselves — they don’t exist outside of us. Stop feeling sorry for yourself and start interacting with the world around you.

10. Stop Trying To Change Others.

People don’t want to be changed and most often can’t be changed. You must learn to accept people for who they are. The less you focus on all the things you find wrong about an individual, the more you can focus on how to deal with them and all their discrepancies. Don’t fix people; learn to deal with them and — I hate to say it — learn to manipulate them into doing what you want them to do; mind-f*ck them.

11. Stop Making Excuses.

I understand that the time isn’t right, the place isn’t right, and the stars have yet to align perfectly. The setting will never be perfect for anything. Perfect is not the alignment of outside forces; it’s making havoc the perfect opportunity. Stop making excuses and start making opportunities for yourself.

12. Stop Worrying.

Sh*t happens. Then it happens again. Then sh*t won’t happen for a day or two…and then it returns with a vengeance. The more responsibilities that you have the more you have to potentially worry about. The key is to not procrastinate and approach all problems logically. The only thing worth worrying about is your own laziness; everything else is out of your control. If you worry about things out of your control, then you are setting yourself up for a mental breakdown.

13. Stop Focusing On The Negative.

Negativity is overwhelming and contagious. It tints the way we look at the world and makes us believe that we are worse off than we actually are. Negativity and worry go hand in hand and can be the downfall of all that you have worked so hard for.

14. Stop Being Ungrateful.

Statistically speaking, if you are reading this then most people in the world have it worse off than you do. That may not be very comforting…but consider that most of these people are likely to be happier than you. Happiness does not lie in the material, but in the immaterial. Be grateful for what you do have — especially those that play important parts in your life. You could be worse off and may very well be worse off some time in the future. Enjoy whatever prosperity you have.

15. Stop Wasting Time.

You are only allotted a sliver of time to call your life. Use those minutes and hours to make the most of your life. Ever hear your elders complain about how fast time flies by? Listen. They’re speaking the truth.

16. Stop Overloading Your Schedule.

Doing more does not necessarily mean getting more done. It’s all about efficiency. Human beings require certain things in order to live tranquilly. Divvy up your time for all the things that you MUST do and then divvy the rest for the things that you WANT to do. Just make sure to be clear on what you need before you start going after what you want.

17. Stop Trying To Impress Others.

It’s not worth it. The only reason you should ever try to get on someone’s good side is if you need them for something — only in business. When it comes to more personal relationships you can’t do anything more than be yourself. If they don’t love you for who you are, then they will never truly love you.

18. Stop Wishing You Were Someone Else.

Make sure that you know who you are and do all you can to develop — not change. People don’t change, they develop and grow. You are a great individual because you are a human being. There is no need to change who you are to match some preexistent notion of who you should be. Of course, certain situations you may find yourself in will have certain rules of etiquette, which you will need to learn and adopt. However, who you know you are and who others perceive you to be does not have to be the same person.

19. Stop Overlooking The Simple Things In Life.

The simplest of things are the most beautiful of things. Take walks. Talk to strangers. Look up at the sky, the trees, the birds. Connect with nature and all that which comes at little to no price. We often do our best to reach for things that we believe will make us more in tune with reality — happier — only to find out that we were greatly mistaken. Life offers us simple beauties. Relish in them.

20. Stop Hating Yourself.

We are often too tough on ourselves. We hate ourselves for our failures and our inabilities — which makes no sense whatsoever. Failing is learning and inabilities can be turned into abilities with enough work and patience. Whatever you dislike about yourself can be changed… just be sure that it’s worth changing. My advice: learn to love yourself the way that you are. Changes are easier to make when you already have a good relationship with yourself.


MAGIC

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A typical stage magic is a performing art that entertains audiences by staging tricks or creating illusions of seemingly impossible or supernatural feats using natural means. These feats are called magic tricks, effects, or illusions.

And then, there’s Reality magic. The grandest of the illusions performed at the brightest stage there is, life.

Reality is the illusionist.

We are the audience.

 

I. The Pledge.

Reality shows us something that appears ordinary but is probably not, making use of misdirection. It seems normal and fair but all is not what it seems. It could start as a normal day like any other, same time you wake up, same routine, and then there’s a split second of coincidence that de-cloaks the awaiting magic.

This would be the time when your mind and heart is free from any form of suspicion. No matter how cautious you are, you can never escape it cause’ no one can ever expect or foretell how the setup, the pledge would be introduced.

This is the perfect time for the illusionist to introduce to us his assistant, love.

 

II. The Turn.

Next is the performance, or the “Turn,” where the illusionist makes the ordinary act extraordinary.

You wake up one day and realize that everything has changed. Everything went so fast, and you start questioning yourself if you have done enough to catch up with the flow, or if you should really go with the flow.

By this time the illusion has started. Reality most likely had directed all your attention to his assistant making you care less of what is happening outside the theater, or even how your seatmate is doing.

Suddenly, all the things that you do, everything that you wanted, and most of the plans that you would be building for the following days will evolve around the assistant. The illusionist would make you crazy over his assistant like a child is to his first toy. You’ll never get over it. Even if you do in the future, none will make you forget it.

Just when you are so into it, when love has been the apple of your eye, the illusionist will close the magic box, will pull down the curtain of chances and confusion to cover it and within a countdown, the assistant would disappear.

The colorful magic box full of hopes and promises that once held the assistant would also be the same box that made her disappear. Gone from sight, and maybe gone for good.

All of these are misdirection. All real and, yet, you WANT to believe that these problems are solvable at the wave of a wand by the Illusionist.

 

III. The Prestige

Lastly, there is the “Prestige,” where the effect of the illusion is produced.

There are “twists and turns, where lives hang in the balance and you see something shocking you’ve never seen before.” Or maybe something familiar but you refuse to accept that it’s the same stories only different situations.

Makes you hope that the illusionist would approach us and ask for the grand ending we prefer, just like what a performing clown would do on our birthday party held in our own backyard. That will not happen, because you’re not at home, you’re not the illusionist’s master, you are on the biggest stage called life, you are already a part of his performance.

You made yourself too attached with the assistant, now there’s no going back. There’s no use trying, even if you’d be able to get a step back, nothing will be the same again.

And then with the just a wave of a wand, the assistant would reappear. But there’s a catch; the place where the assistant would reappear changes for an added impact. It may be on the same box where she left, on the center stage where you can see her but cannot reach, beside another audience, or if you are lucky, and you have proven to be the best audience around, Reality might be kind enough to make her assistant reappear at your lap, where you can appreciate the prestige way better than anyone else inside the theater would.

This is just a phase; the illusionist has hundreds of tricks off his sleeves. He has many more charms to pull off his hat. There are many other forms of diversions; the stage called life where reality performs has many hidden surprises.

Above everything, what matters is that your assistant is back in sight. She’s okay, but it doesn’t mean that she will get near you to shake your hand, thank you for being there and ask you for a coffee after the show.

Confettis will fall, pop ups will blow, flashes of lights will go brighter, and the act is done. You walk away from the event thinking that what you saw can’t be real yet you still believe.

I believe. I will never get tired of magic. And I will one day break the magician’s code.

Fade to black…


Don’t let something that doesn’t matter cause you to lose something that does.

Don’t let something that doesn’t matter cause you to lose something that does. Again – Don’t let something that doesn’t matter cause you to lose something that does – need I say more?

You don't always get a second shot, at least give your best once you get one.

I admire those who keep on saying that they’re living a life of no regrets. I wonder if they had never committed the mistake of taking for granted something, overlooking at things, while wasting all the good everything around them by being stupid, not appreciating what they already have, how lucky they are at the moment, and still spoiling it by doing things they would have lived happier without anyway.

If you are one, you have my thumbs up for being strong, but at the same time, my utmost sympathy. I hope you’d learn soon. Sooner before everything good around you gets completely lost. I wish you wake up one day seeing what you really wanted. If what you have with you right now is life you wish to live in the future, or even just the path to take in the years to come, then make a move. Stop killing the  happy life you are living by wasting time and effort with non-worthy things.

Worth, love, life and happiness are short but deep words. Words that in the harsh path called reality doesn’t always come together, aren’t given in an instant, and never easy to achieve. So if you are lucky to have felt it, cherish everything. Do not waste a second by taking it for granted. If it is another person who have shown you these words, keep my word, that individual is a gift. A keeper.

Never miss a chance. Never waste a moment. Life is short but sweet, happy but heavy, so if by chance you are lucky to have crossed paths with that someone or something that makes you feel complete, or had given you the feeling of contentment, that often underrated word called worth, please, never ever waste it by any means or learn life’s lessons the hard way.

Think about this, losing something even when you have tried and given your all is easier to live with than having that something and losing it on some worthless matters is far harder to live with in a lifetime.

Again, Don’t let something that doesn’t matter cause you to lose something that does.

*sigh* Sorry, this sounded like a personal rant, indeed it is. I know the thought is vague, some might see this pointless, but please, just this single post. I have no one else to talk to right now. Thanks.


ADSpiration: Coke Happiness Truck

Today’s inspiration would be a viral video campaign shot at my own country Philippines. Coke being the big name it is, contributed a lot in establishing a trend on modern marketing and advertising. I am a fan of their ad rivalry with Pepsi. The advertising geniuses behind these ads are the coolest. I dream of one day being able to at least work with them.

They also brought their Happiness Truck in Brazil! Watch out, the next stop might be at your place!

 

Stay inspired!


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