A shift in our perspective changes the way we feel about life.
I am a minimalist. My wardrobe has little variation… I wear lots of plaid. I’ve had the same breakfast the same location for more than 18 years. I delete emails that seem long and use as few words as possible when I communicate….
So, the fact that I had to break this message into multiple parts indicates that this is extremely important to me.
I believe with every bone in my body that your happiness is directly related to the perspective through which you see the world. This perspective is shaped by your life experiences.
The best strategy for developing a healthy perspective that leads to happiness is to practice the following two behaviors.
- Live Gratefully.
- Give generously.
We are all filthy rich
Let me describe your day.
- You woke to an alarm and rolled out of a comfortable bed.
- You showered, brushed your teeth and ate breakfast.
- You got into a car equipped with a radio and air conditioning.
- You arrived at an office with electricity, a desk and snacks.
- You are now reading this message on a laptop, tablet or phone.
- You will eat dinner (maybe with friends at a restaurant) and will certainly watch TV before you go to bed.
With that in mind, consider these facts:
- 4 billion people live on less than $1.25 per day.
- 7 billion people lack access to clean water.
- 925 million people don’t get enough to eat each day.
- 22,000 children die because of malnutrition every day.
The understatement of the day is this – we are blessed. Crazy blessed. Yet, most people spend the majority of their waking hours focused on what they lack.
You Need to Change
If you are interested in experiencing true happiness in your life you need to first be grateful before you begin to strive for anything more.
That means you start off every day thanking God for your bed, your shower and your breakfast.
Instead of dreading work, you should approach every meeting, phone call and email grateful for the opportunity to participate.
When you see your family and friends, cherish the time with them and live in the moment.
Knowing Something No Longer Matters
Intellectually speaking you already know this. However, knowing and doing are 2 very different ends of the spectrum. The “knowing” simply requires reading a blog or maybe going to church. The “doing” is what’s really difficult.
However, it’s worth the effort. In fact, I believe it might be one of the most important things you do in your life.
I can tell you from coaching hundreds of successful professionals that you won’t enjoy doubling of your income for more than 48 hours if you don’t learn to be grateful for your current salary.
If you don’t believe me, keep trying it your way. Keep striving to out achieve everyone you know without taking the time to appreciate your accomplishments or thanking God for your gifts. Let me know how that goes.