7 Power Principles of Happiness

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7 Power Principles of Happiness

We often think what we have, or material goods bring happiness. We say to ourselves, "Oh if I only had this or that, I would be happy." At age seventeen I didn't know or even understand the principles of happiness. I remember as a Senior in high school being in a full-on fist fight with my little brother who was a Softmore in high school at the time. I had worn a pair of his Nike Air Jordan's to school.

Things were flying everywhere in our basement, and my mother came down the stairs and got between us. In an uncontrolled fit of anger, and in my effort to hit my brother again, I ending up hitting my mom in the face.

With a fat, bloody lip and a black eye my mother looked at me and said, "If you don't change and get a hold of your temper you are going to regret for the rest of your life." My brother left, and so did my mom. I was left standing in a messy basement not knowing what to do. Most of us don't know how to find happiness, and we seek it in all the wrong ways. Here are some things I have learned since then.


1. Start with what you have. (It's a Power Principle of Happiness)

In my house, there is a wood craft project that my wife made; it only says: "Bloom Where You Are Planted" Start with what you have. Start with where you are now. Growing from where you are. It's the only place to start. Stop bringing all the negative things in your life back to the forefront. Have an "Attitude of Gratitude" as they say. Quit worrying about what you aren't and just move forward.

Daily Hack: Write every night before you go to bed what you were grateful for that day.

2.Identify Correct Principles. (It's a Power Principle of Happiness)

I have a journal that I keep every day with key principles I believe. Every time things get tough, I go back to that list and see where I have been slipping away from them. It brings a focus back into my life and happiness. Principles are statements of truth. Most people have not spent the time to clearly write statements of truth they will live in their lives. Identifying correct principles will begin the process of changing your behavior. And changing your behavior to act on correct principles is a principle of power. Identifying correct principles will bring more happiness into your life.

Daily Hack: Study every day from sources of truth. Write statements of truth. Go back, rewrite, clarify.

3. Act, don't be acted upon. (It's a Power Principle of Happiness)

Sometimes we get immobilized by fear. Just because we can't see ahead doesn't mean we shouldn't step out into the unknown and move forward. I have found in my life that if I step out into the darkness, that the way became clear and lighted for a few steps more. But that takes faith to act and not let everything around you act upon you. You may have gotten into this habit of letting life act on you. Stop it. Act, don't be acted upon.

Daily Hack: Each day act on a correct principle. I don't want to be prescriptive.

For Example:

  • Principle: "Fitness is a part of life, it brings happiness"
  • Principle: "What I do tonight, will determine my success tomorrow."

Go to bed 30 minutes early. What you do the night before determines your success the next day. Set out some walking clothes. Get up 30 minutes early. Just Walk! Even for 15 minutes. Do this it for a week. Just Act!

4. Make a "To Be" list instead of a "To Do" list, (It's a Power Principle of Happiness)

Most people set goals, but I have noticed in my life that true happiness is in becoming something. Most of the time becoming is about your defined roles or character. These things, however, are never done. You can't earn checkmarks with "To Be's." I can take my family and friends out for a lovely evening this week, which is a "To Do" that I can check off.
Are family or friends a check off list? Being a good father and husband or a good friend is not an event that I can check off, it simply is who I want to be. So, I act accordingly. Becoming needs to be at the very core of life, my attitude, and character, or who I am.

Daily Hack: In at least one significant role, attribute or character in your life, get clear on the principle that will guide you "To Be," then act, and become!

5. Timing is almost as important as the truth. (It's a Power Principle of Happiness)

"It's not the right time."
"I don't have the money."
"I can't do that; I'm too…"

Have you thought these things before?

If you are waiting for the right time, it will never come. This idea may work when it comes to waiting for right moment to give correction to someone, but it doesn't work for moving forward.
"Timing is Everything" The time for happiness is now. The time to apply correct principles in your life is now.
We always say, "I will start tomorrow." Tomorrow may never come. And soon, if we were to keeping saying that, we will have racked up a lifetime of tomorrows! Timing is almost as important as the truth. And the timing is now. Today! Get the knowledge and act!

Daily Hack: Choose the correct principle that will bring happiness and live it every day for a week. Keep a journal each night of its effects.

6. Decision determines destiny. (It's a Power Principle of Happiness)

One thing for sure is we all have the right to choose. One thing we can't pick is the consequences. For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. If we want happiness, really want it, then it will come into your life in abundance. I am not saying that life will not throw curve balls at you because it will all the time. That is why we are here. To learn how to deal the things that life throws at us.

Deciding how we will act (not react) is what life is all about and will determine our destiny.

We say this all this time, "He/she made me…" Even I have said that. It is simply not true! We decide how we will act. Decisions can be made long before we hit difficult situations. Take responsibility for your decisions

Daily Hack: Principle: "Love is the Key in life" One day, no matter what happens, or how people treat you, give love as your action to every situation.

7. Live the "Law of Increasing Returns. (It's a Power Principle of Happiness)

Most of the things that matter in life follow this power principle of happiness. It called the "the law of increasing returns." Life gives us the chance to use this law by letting some of the physical, spiritual, intellectual, and emotional rewards we want the most to be delayed. Unlike the "law of decreasing returns: where our first efforts yield significant returns, with a steady decline, it's the reverse.
The "Law of Increasing Returns" is this:

In life, our first efforts, our second efforts, and even our third efforts will seem to yield so little. Then after time, then and only then, (much later it will seem) the rewards begin, slowly the return on investment comes, and they grow and grow almost exponentially.

The law of increasing returns is the game we are playing in life. We plant, we fertilize, water, and we wait. Not seeing results immediately. Those who understand this law move forward knowing that things that matter most work this way. We don't get caught up in a moment and give up. (We almost have a cognitive dissidence) Those that understand this law move forward and wait for the harvest, and when it comes, the returns are usually more than you could have imagined. (and I can imagine a lot)

Daily Hack: If your applying correct principles, just keep swimming, as Dory would say. The harvest will come.

Well, in conclusion, some will say, "Yep, I already knew all that," and will do nothing. I invite you to evaluate life and see where you can improve. We all can improve. The other value of writing this article is, if just one of you "Act" on one of these principles, then the world will be a better place. I have learned cultural change doesn't usually happen in one big event. It occurs when one person changes and then teaches what they have learned to another. And if that person changes and shows one, then we can change the world one by one. Understanding and living correct principles can and will change your life. Act on Power Principles of Happiness.

For more Information about me and what I am involved in please visit Stephenlivingston.org

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