Happiness and counting your successes

Happiness and counting your successes

Often people attempt to live their lives backwards; they try to have more things, or more money, in order to do more of what they want, so they will be happier.  The way it actually works is the reverse.  You must first be who you really are, then do what you need to do, in order to have what you want.  ~Margaret Young 

The end of the year is here and we all must suffer through the endless year-end lists of everything.  You know the ones, the best of, the worst of, for every category from TV shows to movies to celebrity nightmares.  But today I’m going to suggest that you do your own little end of the year list.  

Every year has its ups and downs and I’m quite sure for all of you this year was no different.  It’s often easier to focus on the things that went wrong over the year or the things you didn’t accomplish.  This is not productive at all and will not make you a happier person.  Now don’t get me wrong, you should take some time to reflect on the things that didn’t work and figure out what you could have done differently.  However don’t obsess on it because this year is another opportunity to accomplish all that you want to do.

This year for me things went wrong, a good relationship ended for me, friends have drifted including someone who for over a decade has been incredibly important to me.  Things at work that I would have liked to accomplish didn’t occur.  I set a goal to lose 30 pounds by the end of the year, it looks like I will fall short by a couple of pounds.  You could take all of that and really spin it into a downer of a year. 

However it has been a very good year for me.  You see the relationship ended but it was probably for the best in the long run, happily, we’re still friends.   We still like each other and instead of looking at it as having lost a great relationship, I choose to count the fact that I’ve gained a good and new friend who I expect to have in my life for a very long time.  Work is work, some things didn’t happen but we accomplished some amazing things and I’m about to do several talks at large conferences discussing our successes.  Finally, I lost 24 pounds since July!  Sure I wanted to lose 30, but the 24 pounds I lost have helped me look better and have been incredibly beneficial to my health.

The two paragraphs above talk about the same exact year just with a little different focus.  Yet the second paragraph is longer and much more upbeat.  And that’s what I want you to do, write that second paragraph for your last year and then use that paragraph as the starting point for the next year and as always, have a happy day my friends.

About Michael Kane

Michael Kane is a writer, photographer, educator, speaker, adventurer and a general sampler of life. His books on hiking and poetry are available in soft cover and Kindle on Amazon.
This entry was posted in personal happiness and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Happiness and counting your successes

  1. 101in2012 says:

    Lots of good advice in this post – thank you 🙂


  2. Pingback: Happiness and Counting Your Successes | Truth Is Scary

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