“Happiness is not about what world gives you, happiness is about what you think about what world gives you. If you see it properly, you will notice there is always something to be grateful about”.
Mo Gawdat, Chief Business Officer for Google X, an entrepreneur, and the author of the book “Solve for Happy” developed a formula which is very simple and is the following:
According to the above formula – are you happy?
If the answer is no: I will ask you “what is missing?”
The truth is that once you have what you think is missing today, there will be something else to long for. This is how our compulsive thinking works.
Recently I had another coaching session with a successful business lady who said “I feel that I am losing the joy of my life, I have a feeling I am converting to a robot that is setting next objectives and constantly working hard towards the better future”.
Does that seem familiar to you? What’s the point of constantly converting our lives into a race, which at the end of the day we do not even enjoy? Maybe what we really need sometimes is to have a break, to stop and to listen to ourselves?
According to Eckhart Tolle, the author of the spiritual bestseller ¨The Power Of Now¨ (if you have not read it yet, I definitely recommend it to you), our brain creates “problems”, but they exist only in the future or in the past. The real connection with life is happening in the moment.
He makes very important distinction, life is what happening now and life situations that can be sometimes hard and difficult, and this is what we need to deal with, however we suffer because our brain becomes attached to a certain idea, situation or emotion.
Brain defects make us miserable, sometimes for a life time. All those voices that dictate how we will spend our day today. They dictate how we will treat people who are around us. They will dictate what is “the truth” and will define who we are. As Eckhart Tolle explains “we become slaves of our mind”. This is until we don’t catch the patterns of our mind and it keeps us locked in the vicious circle.
Start noticing what is your first thought when you wake up?
What is your natural thinking pattern, are you tend to punish yourself, or complain, or constantly compare yourself with others?
I have selected for you a couple of quotes from Eckhart Tolle book, try to notice what emotions come when you read it, how much do you agree or disagree:
“Your mind is an instrument, a tool. It is there to be used for a specific task, and when the task is completed, you lay it down. As it is, I would say about 80 to 90 percent of most people’s thinking is not only repetitive and useless, but because of its dysfunctional and often negative nature, much of it is also harmful. Observe your mind and you will find this to be true. It causes a serious leakage of vital energy. This kind of compulsive thinking is actually an addiction. What characterizes an addiction? Quite simply this: you no longer feel that you have the choice to stop. It seems stronger than you. It also gives you a false sense of pleasure, pleasure that invariably turns into pain.”
It happens to us all the time, we become addicted to an idea, to “our truth”, to what “needs to happen” and so we go on and on and on. Sounds familiar?
As a first exercise I propose you the following:
during the upcoming week, notice all the repetitive and useless thoughts that are coming. It can by anything, just start paying attention what are those inner voices. With some of my coaching clients we do the following, when the repetitive sabotage’s voice is coming, I ask them to acknowledge it first and after to say something like that as a response to their inner voice: “Thank you, I have already heard that. What is the added value of this thought?”
You will be surprised but at this moment our compulsive mind stops, because indeed, there is no “added value” and in majority of cases, all we hear is the repetitive and useless ideas, something that do not serve us or even makes us ill emotionally and physically.
The more I listen to people and practice coaching, the more I see how impatient and strict are we to ourselves. The way we constantly punish ourselves (and since this is always unconsciously there is no way to get out from our emotions) is just unbelievable.
How would your life change if you become your best friend? How can you become your best friend?
Another powerful tool is to find our “silent observer”, it is amazing how much information we can get by simply observing our compulsive thinking. Without judgement, without any self-punishment, just by observing we become consciously aware and this is when we can decide which energy we want to feed today.
I wish you an amazing day and week ahead, and leave you with the below quote –
“A beggar had been sitting by the side of a road for over thirty years. One day a stranger walked by. “Spare some change?” mumbled the beggar, mechanically holding out his old baseball cap. “I have nothing to give you,” said the stranger. Then he asked: “What’s that you are sitting on?” “Nothing,” replied the beggar. “Just an old box. I have been sitting on it for as long as I can remember.” “Ever looked inside?” asked the stranger. “No,” said the beggar. “What’s the point? There’s nothing in there.” “Have a look inside,” insisted the stranger. The beggar managed to pry open the lid. With astonishment, disbelief, and elation, he saw that the box was filled with gold. I am that stranger who has nothing to give you and who is telling you to look inside. Not inside any box, as in the parable, but somewhere even closer: inside yourself.”
What is the small step you can do today that will have a positive impact on your life?