“The great vessel is slow to mature.”
My philosophy for healthy, happy living focuses on my desire to become a fully realized and optimized person, by my own definitions. Developing this philosophy has been 54 years in the making — and it will continue being a lifelong endeavor. My philosophy for happy living has been tested through trials, tribulations, failures, and successes.
I have played and experimented with life to see what works for me. This is what I’ve learned so far…
I work hard, believe in myself, and try my best to overcome the challenges life brings. Perhaps my biggest life lesson has been to shift my focus from what I want, to having gratitude for what I have and where I am at the moment — to live each day like nothing is missing.
I start most mornings with this simple expression of gratitude:
I am alive.
I am loved.
I am in love.
Creating a healthy, happy life takes a lifetime of practice and intention.
Lifelong learning inspires me to continuously develop new ideas and skills. There’s a line from a Billy Joel song that says, “the more I learn the less I know.” I am excited about what I’ll learn next and how it may impact my life.
Lifelong reflection and reassessing my priorities helps me stay focused on what’s truly important.
It doesn’t matter how fast I go, it only matters that I keep moving forward. I have learned to be patient and diligent. I give myself time to progress in a purposeful direction with consistency and daily practice.
I am at my happiest when I’m listening to my heart. I have grown to trust my heart because it knows where my happiness lies. When a thought or an idea inspires me, I can feel it in my body. I pay attention to that.
When an idea strikes me, I make sure it’s relevant for me. I compare it to my top priorities from my practice of reflection and reassessment. This helps me separate inspirational ideas (that I want to act on) from really cool ones (that I acknowledge and leave alone).
For example, a recent speaking engagement touched me deeply and inspired me to write my first book. I am actively engaged in the process right now. I also recently saw a super cool seaplane land on the lake in front of our property. I thought, “wouldn’t it be great to own a seaplane!?”
Enter: my filters
Output: acknowledge the seaplane and my attention goes back to writing the book
I try to spend the majority of my time on things that are inspiring and fit my priorities, and drop whatever else I possibly can.
It’s easier to maintain order than to correct disorder. This is the secret of the middle way.
I am happiest when I live my life in an orderly way. When things get disorderly, it takes lots of extra energy to put them back.
“Is it good for a person to eat sometimes? Yes, obviously it is. Is it good for a person to eat all the time? No, of course not. Somewhere in between, you passed over the Tao.
Is it good to fast periodically? Yes. Is it good to never eat? No.
The pendulum can swing all the way from gorging yourself to death, to starving yourself to death. Those are the two extremes of the pendulum: the yin and the yang, expansion and contraction, nondoing and doing.
Everything has two extremes. Everything has gradations of this pendulum swing. If you go to the extremes you cannot survive.”
Life has taught me that I have more energy and I am happier when I focus on my priorities, maintain order in my life, and avoid extremes.
Every life is full of obstacles, failures, and setbacks. Mine is no exception.
I simply try to do the right thing – and when I slip up, I have learned to forgive myself quickly, without judgment, get back up, and get back at it.
Work & the 3C’s
My work has provided me the ability to be responsible for myself, to care for my family, and to give to others.
I’m most happy when I’m engaged in creative work, producing something that makes a contribution to society, and doing so in connection with my family, friends and community.
I believe a better self is always possible – today, tomorrow, every day, for the rest of our time on this planet.
This idea is the heart of my philosophy for living a happy life and it was my inspiration for creating our company, Happy Living.
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