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why should you bother with happiness

Updated on September 12, 2012

why bother enjoying life

Why Should You Bother With Happiness?

I first became aware of positive thinking by reading Norman Vincent Peale’s book, The Power of Positive Thinking.. His book, greatly influenced the way I began to live my life. Peale was a minister who suffered from a terrific personality disorder called ‘shyness”. He began to study the Bible not only as part of his Sunday preparation, but also as a means to overcome his bashful nature. Eventually, he pastored the Marble Collegiate church in New York City. His fame and his message spread around the world.

Peale began working in the 1920’s, through the great depression and well into the latter part of the 20th century. His work came before Chopra, and the gurus of today. His message has now been studied and queried and researched. Positive thinking works!

There was a study in the Journal of Applied Psychology done in 2011 which highlighted that very theme. It reviewed thousands of people and concluded that happy people live longer. Norman Vincent Peale lived well into his 90’s. There are skeptics who may refer to genetic disposition as the real reason for Peale’s longevity, but is it possible that because he had a reason to live, an attitude of abundance, that Dr. Peale was able to overcome obstacles and illness? The Applied Journal concluded that happy people live healthier and more complete lives, in large part because of their attitude.

When you rise, do you take time to be grateful for another good day? What is a good day? A day when you are on the right side of the grass? Could it be a day when you can have the problems and challenges that life poses? One more day that you are alive? Do you remind yourself that just for today you will”Let go and let God”? Do you remember that “You can if you think you can?”

Gratitude, then, is one way to alleviate the stress of everyday existence. Another way to accomplish the same objective is to provide cheerful service. Anyone who has read the Bible can relate to the verse about “there is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for another” The Buddha is quoted as saying “I never see what has been done. I see what remains to be done.” Unfortunately, concept of doing for others has been lost on American society. Need proof? Ask any public school teacher or service worker. Sure, the tragedy that strikes brings out the best in us; the real doing for others is the everyday doing. The visit to the old folks home just because it’s there and you are passing by. The call to the homeless shelter to see if they have enough of whatever it is you think of.

The everyday ordinary doing for others is what makes a difference in the world. It makes a difference in the life of the person who struggles with attitude or worse, depression. Mental Health America looked at concrete ways to combat depression. Their study revealed “helping others reduces your risk for depression and chronic pain and contributes to overall better health.”

Obviously, people who are wrapped in an office or place of paid imprisonment may have a more difficult time finding volunteer opportunities. Scouting, church connection, civic involvement and school volunteerism provide convenient means of applying the love thy neighbor tenet. The more one reaches out, the greater the chance of meeting meaningful relationships.

Those familiar with Feng Shui can appreciate how important it is to keep space engaged with pleasurable images. Furniture placement, family photos, sensory pacifiers are all ways to accomplish this. The Live Strong Blog explains that one should “Put up pictures and documents in your workspace that make you happy, such as photos from a fun vacation, letters from satisfied customers or work you're especially proud of doing”. This is especially sensible regarding the importance of having symbols of love around you so that when the job gets exceedingly difficult, it is possible to remember why you do what you do, and for whom you do it.

How does this ultimately relate to the Power of Positive Thinking and the effects of Happy Attitude on stress reduction? You are what you think about all day long. Doing for others will ultimately allow you to remember that you receiving more in the doing than you receive in the taking. Symbols and expressions of your importance to those you cherish get you through the hard times. In the words of the late Steve Goodman, “The pleasure’s not the taking; it’s the loving of the game”.

Do for others, build relationships through volunteer service, use symbols as reminders of your mission, read and read again, the Bible, the Koran, the Buddhist tracts around mindfulness. Ultimately, your life is your own. Enjoy it, hate it. Be grateful for it, throw it away. Everything is pure potential, and it begins and ends between your own ears.

Do You have hope?

Rate yourself on this ten question survey. Do you have hope?
1. I can impact my future. yes/no
2. I control how I behave. yes/no
3.There is power for good in the universe. yes/no
4. I can use this power for good. yes/no
5. People just give me information. It's up tome to react to it. yes/no
6. I can keep my perspective in difficult situations. yes/no
7. I don't believe in defeat. yes/no
8. Energy and persistence will eventually conquer difficulties. yes/no
9. I believe that I have gifts to share with the world. yes/no
10. When I encounter difficult times, I can find my way out. yes/no

happy people like to polka


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    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      You are speaking my language with this hub! My life is one positive after another, and all it took was me being receptive to the idea of positive energy. Great hub!

    • Abundant old soul profile image

      Abundant Old Soul 5 years ago from united states

      Just what I needed for today!