How to Find Happiness:
Two Secrets if You Wanna Be Happy, part 2

Read page 1, part 1 of the How to Find Happiness article here.

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soul self

How to Find Happiness
'Secret' #1:
GET IN STEP WITH
YOUR SOUL SELF

You were born with special and specific gifts and interests that you want to use in your life. When you are using your gifts you feel energized and excited. 

This rise in energy and excitement is Guidance from Source/The Universe/God - letting you know that this action (whatever it is) is good and right for you.

Last weekend Jeff and I were getting an artist's print framed. The manager of the frame store was low key and not all that friendly when we walked in. 

Once he realized we needed his help selecting the best look for our print, and that we were open to his feedback, his shift in energy was palpable. It was amazing to see how excited and animated he became as he started selecting different mat and frame options that would make our print even more beautiful. 

This initially quiet and reserved young man became expressive and energized as he contemplated and compared 'millions' of different options for the very best look, with an artists' eye.

(Suzie Note: I'm exaggerating. There weren't 'millions' of options,

stopwatch

but it seemed like he was going on and on and on...

I was glad that our print was going to be beautifully framed, but since artistry is not MY soul's purpose, I found myself eager for him to finish!

While I'm not overly interested in art and design, I loved seeing his shift in energy, and analyzing that. Now THAT IS my soul's purpose!)

Since we were there 'forever' (just kidding), I asked him about his background. He'd been to culinary school and jobs were scarce right now. He said that he was surprised at how much he liked the framing business. I pointed out the his artistic interests were being used at the frame shop too.  

My guess is that his personal key for how to find happiness, his soul self, would be high Aesthetic, "The Balanced and Sensitive" Artistic Soul.

He'll continue to find happiness in his career, as long as he can use these soul self interests in his work.  

My strongest personal key for how to find happiness, my soul self key is, according to the Workplace Motivators assessment (my favorite energize your life online tool) is the Learner's Soul, a passion for ideas, learning and knowledge.

See this FREE soul self intrinsic motivations self test
to get a better idea of what is 'calling' you.

On page 1, I mentioned that this past year was my happiest year ever. Guess what I got to do last year? Learn!

I got to spend most of my time learning and building this online business, and last year was my happiest year!

soul self2

I would guess that my mom, based on what I know about the assessment and her interests, is probably an extreme example of the Artist's Soul, which is a strong, strong, strong desire for balance, artistic expression, self growth and harmony. I wonder if she'd immersed herself in her art and in self development, following her own how to find happiness soul self key, if her mood swings would have been less severe.

About the Getting in Step With Your Soul Self
Workplace Motivators Assessment:

The Workplace Motivators assessment, developed in the early 1900's, is focused on helping us all find what energizes us the most.

It's based on the fact that we each have our own specific gifts, world views and soul's calling, that serve as our own guide in how to find happiness.

This 'calling' is influenced by nature (we're born with certain interests, talents and drives) and by nurture (we're influenced by our environment to embrace or reject certain interests and drives).

The different degrees of interest we have within each of the six intrinsic motivations, soul self areas, will determine what energizes us AND what aggravates and bores us:

  1. Theoretical/Knowledge - "The Learner's Soul" (I'm passionate in this area.)
  2. Utilitarian/Economic - "The Business Person's Soul" (My husband, is, I believe passionate in this area)
  3. Individualistic/Political - "The Power Player's Soul" (Entrepreneurs, politicians and people with natural charisma, are often strong here.)
  4. Social/Altruistic - "The Helping Others Soul" (Coaches, teachers, nurses and anyone whose key to how to find happiness is in serving others.)
  5. Traditional/Regulatory - "The Process and Order Soul" (People who thrive on order, structure as found in the military or in ministry are often are high in this area.)
  6. Aesthetic - "The Balanced and Sensitive Soul" (Our framer  and culinary school 'friend', plus my mom, will thrive when they can be creative.)

Click here for a Directory of Factoids and Tips
for Each Soul Self/Motivator Area

I recommend that you Print This Page Now. There is a lot of good information here you might want to refer back to...

Action Takeaways for Secret #1
Get In Step with Your Soul Self:

mind the gap logo

How to Find Happiness 'Secret' #2: CLOSE THE GAPS

What does it mean to close the gaps?

It is a focus on releasing internal tension. It is consciously releasing resistance within one's self so that there is less distance between where you are and where you want to be on all subjects that matter to you.

"Happiness is not something that happens.

It is not the result of good fortune or random chance.
It is not something that money can buy or power command.
It does not depend on outside events, but rather how we interpret them.

Happiness, in fact is a condition that must be prepared for, 
cultivated, and defended privately by each person.

People who learn to control inner experience
will be able to determine the quality of their lives,
which is as close as any of us can come to being happy."
---Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi,
Flow The Psychology of Optimal Experience

mind the gap sign

If you ever ride the London Underground subway system, you'll notice that when a train arrives at the station you'll hear an automated announcement to: "Mind The Gap"

This is a warning to remind you to pay attention to the gap between the platform and the car, if you don't, you could fall.

Closing the gaps is about paying attention to gaps in your thinking, your focus, daily actions and conversations.

My neighbor is an attorney with two small children. She's just returned back to work and is trying to juggle it all, and is often frustrated.

Every time I've seen her over the last 6 months she's shared how overwhelmed she is and how she hates getting up early,

"I'm a night person, you know. This getting up early is making me crazy. This is so hard. I'm tired. The kids are driving me crazy. Work is nuts..."

Her state of overwhelm is understandable. It can be more than challenging to raise small children and have a career. But because she's not managing the gap, she's making the inner tension greater by constantly beating the drum of her frustration.

Her gap between what she wants and where she wants to be getting bigger. She seems to look and feel worse every time I see her. The life she intended for herself is not happening.

Minding the gap is NOT ignoring how you feel - it's more than okay for my neighbor to vent. Heaven knows I vent too.

feel good

But if you're focused on wanting to feel good and on how to find happiness and how to love your life, at some point you'll awaken to the fact that you can choose to be miserable, continuing to vent and complain, or you can try to start looking at things in different way.

If we stay focused on closing the gaps, over time, little-by-little, we'll move closer our own answers for how to find happiness.

Here's an every day example:

Yesterday I went to my UPS store to mail a few packages. As usual, I was in a hurry. In front of me were 5 people, the computers were acting up and the good folks behind the counter were frustrated.

In that moment I could have complained to the guy next me, sighed deeply and stomped my feet as I got more and more aggravated.

This reaction would be making the gap between what I wanted (a fast UPS experience) and what I had (a slow UPS experience) bigger, thereby increasing my inner tension and stress.

Or, I could take a few breathes to relax myself. I could choose to come back later. I could redirect my thoughts. I could balance my checkbook. I could have a friendly talk with the person standing in line with me.

I have many lower the resistance options when I'm paying attention to and choosing to close the gaps.

That's what happened for me last year.

I spent more time closing the gaps, than widening the gaps. I felt less resistance and more inner harmony.

That's how I had my best year ever.

unhappy in car seat
  1. Put up with what's bothering you and continue to be miserable.

    (I believe that's what my mom choose, and many other adults choose, and possibly the reasons for fretful, worrisome, unhappy people.)

    OR
  2. Choose to close the gaps by choosing your focus.

    (Vent for a while get it out of your system, then start choosing to make it different in your mind.)

Sometimes when I'm making the gap bigger around something that seems like it's out of my control, I think about kids in car seats.

happy in the car seat

Sometimes when I'm making the gap bigger around something that seems like it's out of my control, I think about kids in car seats.

Car seats are the law. When in a car, children of certain ages need to be in a car seat. When in the car seat they can be miserable or they can distract themselves, and enjoy the ride. Same rule, but different decisions.

One is minding the gap, creating more inner harmony and less resistance.

The other is making the gap bigger, and creating less inner harmony and more resistance.

The car seat analogy reminds me that even when there are things I have to do, things that appear to be beyond my control, I can fight it and be miserable or choose to relax.

I recommend that you Print This Page Now, that way you can refer back to this information again...

Action Takeaways for Secret #2
Close the Gap:

  • Make a commitment to take an active role in your own how to find happiness answers by complaining less and praising more. Make more decisions around what you say, do and think.
  • Spend time every day writing lists of appreciation and focus wheels. See my Self Motivation Tips video and worksheet here.
  • Take the free Wake Up Eager Quiz to determine specifically what how to find happiness areas you can focus on to close gaps.
  • Keep a journal. This is something I do every day. Write, reflect and think about what you want in your life and why you want it. For journal writing ideas, click here.
  • Get really good at goal setting with these goal setting worksheets.
  • Consider reading Flow, The Psychology of Optimal Experience, a book chock-full of how to find happiness research and insights. Read my book review, and other building self motivation skills book reviews, here.

The bottom line in how to find happiness is: follow your soul's calling, do more of what energizes you and pay attention to the gaps, close them or you'll fall in!

"Whether we are happy depends on inner harmony, not on the controls we are able to exert over the great forces of the Universe." 
---Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi
Flow The Psychology of Optimal Experience

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How has the journey for finding happiness affected your life? Have you tried everything? What has worked and what has not? Have you found a sure fire way of living more happy days? Have you tried things you'd advise others to avoid?

What are your top two 'secrets'? Do you have any tips that would benefit others who are seeking their own how to find happiness answers?

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Inspiring Video - 3 minutes, 9 seconds

This video includes actionable steps for how to find happiness. 

The content is being expressed by my favorite teachers, Abraham, from Abraham-Hicks Publication.

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