Forgetting Our Worth

In the world of economics, everything has a price. Believe it or not, human life has a price tag. NPR did a segment on this topic in April of 2020. The transcript is linked HERE. It has more explanation than I’m willing to indulge. With the monetary amount stated, are we more than a price tag? Do we have value? Well, for starters, there is a difference between value and price. Value is how useful or appreciated someone or something is. If I am eating soup, a spoon has more value than a fork. But, value also encompasses how much we care about something. A friend who washes their car every Saturday values their vehicle.

On the other hand, price is a monetary amount. We cannot replace everything. So, we place a price as a substitute. This brings us to our topic. What are we worth?

Every human life has value. This is a hard pill to swallow because we are taught different roles in life bring different values. After all, we want our children to grow up and be doctors and bioengineers. We want them to achieve a status of financial security and happiness. Is that too much to ask? Not until we place the value of one human over another. I don’t envy the shoes of doctors who choose which lives to save. It’s challenging but necessary in that field. For the rest of us, everyone is equal. No one has more value than the next. The roles we choose may present a twist on our perception of value. A mechanic is more suited for repairing cars than a politician. But, that is placing value on a role, not the human. 

We judge others by the roles in life that they choose. If a person feels pride when they collect the community’s garbage, who are we to look down on them. But there are times that we overvalue people as well. Tabloids drop shell shockers on movie stars that fall from the graces of our expectations. World leaders are easy prey for the media. In the end, these are humans filling roles that have different values in our society. We have yet to answer “What are we worth?”

We appreciate the people we value. We don’t belittle nor go off on a tyrannical tangent to the ones we treasure. We should never excuse the lack of appreciation. If our peers can’t appreciate what we do, then we need to reassess our relationship. We should feel valued by our peers, friends, loved ones, and bosses. They should not take us for granted. And while we’re hitting the caveats of being valued, respecting boundaries, valuing our advice, being professionally honest, and genuinely listening to us are signs of being loved and appreciated. These are minor qualities that we must give and receive. That’s right. We must ensure that we aren’t taking others for granted. It’s easy to do but despised when done to us. 

Our feelings and thoughts are worth noticing. We are worth the appreciation, professional honesty, and having our boundaries respected. Not everyone will find the same value in us. This is why it is essential to surround ourselves with friends and family that appreciate us. 

You are worth being appreciated.

You are worth being loved.

Never make excuses for substandard treatment or abuse. We have feelings and emotions, and there is no such thing as a healthy amount of abuse. “If only we had done this, then they wouldn’t have done that.” We are not responsible for the actions of others. This is why we should never make excuses for their actions. 

I’d like to interject by stating that value is a two-way street. If we fail to respect or tolerate others, then we cannot expect respect in return. Pushing emotional buttons is not healthy. Creating a problem then swooping in to save our victim is a form of abuse. It’s known as Hero Syndrome.

We are unique individuals bringing our views, insights, and perspective to this world. Finding like-minded friends promotes our growth. We may need to outsource the internet to find such a community, but it is worth it. Those that bring positive words and complement our ideas are essential to our mental health. No one is worthless. 

Until the next blog, live life, be happy, and click the like. 

A Look At Anxiety

Anxiety is a natural reaction to stress; nothing more, nothing less. It is the fear, dread, or uneasiness we feel when life takes a dip. Our emotional state determines how we will traverse troubled times. Anxiety is both good and bad, and our approach determines what we see. 

How does anxiety benefit us? Let’s begin by recognizing that we prioritize everything. When it comes to difficulties, we take care of the big issues first. Stress that causes greater anxiety will seize more attention. This is why we choose to break a coffee date with a friend to finish a work project. Of course, we let our friend know. We aren’t animals. Anxiety that helps us balance our stress is good-anxiety.

An over-production of cortisol is a downside to anxiety. This symptom obscures our view of major and minor problems. For some, all issues are enormous.  A period of trauma can bring this confusion. One episode can cause anxiety, while a series has a bigger effect. The longer we’re in trauma, the greater the confusion. At any rate, this is bad-anxiety. We aren’t able to prioritize our stress.

Both women and men are affected by bad-anxiety. It is important to understand that men and women approach pressure in different manners. For starters, women are more apt to admit they are feeling strained. This is one reason women may appear to be more stressed. Men, on the other hand, bottle their emotions. Add a stoic face, and we have a hardcore man that can take the heat. Wait, that’s not right. Even Chuck Norris and Clint Eastwood have coping mechanisms. We are all human. We feel emotions; even if we don’t show them, we feel them. 

Sometimes, we need to rethink our actions. If our brain is confused and tells us that everything is catastrophically horrible, we may need to sit down with pen and paper and logically prioritize our problems. It would behoove us to breathe from the diaphragm or lower stomach. While anxiety produces cortisol, breathing exercises in a stress-free area reduce this production. 

If our stress is out of control, there are things we can do. Keep a positive mind. Expecting the worse heightens our anxiety. Enjoy the best but plan for the worse. This allows us to breathe if things turn sour.  A journal records stressful moments. Thus, a pattern may form and allowing us to see what is triggering our discomfort. Once again, breathe from the abdomen. This may sound like a simple task, but it is often overlooked. We don’t need to sit on the floor in a perfect pose. Lying in bed will afford us the posture for breathing. Infants do it all the time.

Anxiety isn’t the monster society loves to paint. But, it is serious. If our stress is out of control, we need to ask for assistance. I’m all for being anti-pill-popping. But, there are times when non-pharmaceutical treatments aren’t enough. We may need to talk to a counselor or psychotherapist. Seeking help doesn’t show weakness. In fact, it shows the opposite; courage,

Life has moments of being overwhelming. If we take our time and plan each step, we can traverse with happiness. Prioritize our problems and solve the significant issues first. If motivation is needed, then knocking out a couple of small problems can build confidence. To start, we must act. Otherwise, we are just talking about doing. We can do better than that because we are better than that.

Until the next blog, live life, be happy and click the like.

A Quick Segment About Morals

In its most straightforward format, having morals means knowing right from wrong and good from evil. Science has proven that we are born morally innate. Meaning, we are a clean slate when choosing right from wrong. This observation leads us to our next set of questions. What is right? Who decided it was right? Once again, to keep our explanation simple, it comes down to survival and ease of life. Stress produces cortisol, and this does not bring comfort. Happiness brings dopamine which in turn makes us feel good. If a scenario brings joy, then we tend to repeat it. Morning coffee is the best example. In general, we love that first-morning sip of that black nectar we call java. That is until we mistakenly put salt in our coffee instead of sugar. (good experience/ bad experience)

We could spend all day making a list of good morals. These are the acts we do every day that help ourselves and others around us. We know what brings happiness. Sometimes, it’s as simple as a compliment or holding the door for others. These traits begin as young as three months old while we observe our new world. We learn what brings anger and what brings happiness. A parent or guardian is the first-line definition of our morals. Then, we go outside and learn to make new friends. Their morals may differ from ours. This is when we know what to do when there is a conflict of morals. We either fight, talk, or agree to disagree. If we are fortunate enough, we may learn that having different views on what is morally right or wrong is how we choose our peers. 

Just as there are good morals, there are bad morals. No matter how we justify it, the unlawful killing of another person is murder. Notice the unlawful portion. As a society, we have boundaries for our actions. A set of rules dictates what we can or cannot do. This helps us understand where to draw the line between right and wrong. What one person deems as permissible may prove to be unsightly to others. Just ask the gentleman who has six fixer-uppers on his front lawn. A person can have bad morals. That is to say, what a person believes is good for them may not be suitable for everyone. Good morals are beneficial for the individual and the group.

A person who tells the truth is considered honest. Unless, they use the truth to spread animosity. Meet enough people and this deceptor will appear. Telling the truth is only good if our intentions are good. Immoral actions don’t produce moral results. And there we have it. Our intentions, mindset, and attitude determines the purpose of our actions. Did we do is for the good of others and ourselves or were we struck by bitterness. Revenge and vengeance are hot topics in Hollywood. An onslaught of characters who were wronged but they made it “right.” There are no winners in a “tit for tat” behavior. As we reciprocate the harmful action back to our transgressor we try to one-up our foe. Of course they now have the same idea. This volleys back and forth until someone gets hurt, injured, or killed. Yes, people have died from a simple game of “I got you back.” Whatif we were to not seek vengeance. What would happen? Most of the time, people pick at each other to see who they can get a rise from. The loudest or most annoyed is rewarded with more picking. This is one aspect of bullying. A casual joke every now and again is not bad, but a behavioral pattern of this may show signs of mental health issues. This doesn’t mean that they are crazy or psychotic. We are stating that they may just be bored, stressed, or just trying to get attention. 

We must learn for ourselves good morals. People are not perfect and at times may exhibit bad behaviors that we learn. Even though we may pick up bad habits from others, we are responsible for our actions. Never blame others for the acts we commit. Take responsibility and move forward. By exhibiting a good standard of morals, we become a paragon of professionalism. Be mindful of the intentions here. It is not couth to do the right things for attention. That’s not how good morals work. Instead, focus on self-betterment. As we correct our flaws we will find other aspect to improve. This leads us down a path of becoming a role model for others. Take the time to evaluate your morals, and weed out the negativity. It’s that simple. 

Until the next blog, live life, be happy and click the like.

A Look At Our Achievements

Achievements can bring happiness like none other. The feeling that our struggle is over and we can now reap the rewards fills our soul. From our first steps as a baby to gaining academic degrees as an adult, we need achievements. 

Does our happiness depend on reaching goals? No, however, accomplishments do bring joy. Imagine a world with no goals, achievements, or success stories. This sounds bland, right? But, keep in mind too much struggle, and we will burnout. There needs to be a balance.

Why should we set goals or have achievements? Our accomplishments bring a sense of pride. With every “We did it!” comes confidence, growth, or a new skill. This is a massive part of finding our happiness. But the feeling won’t last forever. The best option for us to take is to enjoy the moment then move on. With each accomplishment comes more dopamine. That feel-good hormone warms our soul and brings a smile to our faces. We deserve to feel good about our achievements. Bragging may not be the best course of action, but letting a friend know that we met a goal, climbed a mental mountain, or overcame our fears is what friends do. Just ensure the announcements aren’t always one way. Feeling good for other”s accomplishments produces dopamine as well. By sharing a moment with a friend, we, in turn, can have a “helper’s high.”

There is a dark side to achievements. Lurking in the back of our skulls is a voice waiting to ridicule us for every failed moment. Perhaps it’s not that bad, but for some, it may feel that way. Not reaching our achievements can bring stress, which can add to a whole list of issues; anxiety, depression, headaches, heart disease, or memory and concentration problems. Face it, failing is not a good feeling. Constantly failing is even worse. Long-term effects of stress are high blood pressure, weight management issues, and mental health. No one enjoys losing. Thanks to the hormone cortisol, not reaching our goals feels horrible. 

With all of this in mind, how should we approach our achievements or the lack thereof? First, we should find our limits. Then know our limits. This may sound redundant, but it isn’t. Our limits on different subjects will change over time. Thus it is essential to know how much will overload us and abstain from taking on too much. This will keep the cortisol levels down. 

Speaking of down, it is apparent that some individuals love to bring others down. Why should we rise higher when we can bring others down? It’s human nature to take the easy route. Changing others is better than changing ourselves. This is a truth in its purest form. If we keep pointing out every wrong a person does, people may believe that person is incompetent. 

Praising people in public and correcting them in private is not only dignifying, but it promotes good mental health. Adrenaline and cortisol levels are reduced. Complements and encouragements promote growth. However, there is such a thing as overdoing it. Once again, we are down to finding that balance. A side effect of making others feel good is that we will feel good. It’s a part of the helper’s high mentioned earlier. 

Achievements are just a part of the many ways we can find our happiness. Take the time to enjoy each moment, then plan for the next adventure. By focusing on our wins, we will see how great we are. Never hang onto the negativity of others. They will always have something wrong to add. We may mess up along the way, but we are closer to finding life’s happiness with each rebounding step. 

Until the next blog, live life, be happy, and click the like. 

2 Cents On Financial Happiness

This week’s blog is about financial freedom and whether it is possible to obtain. I had a basic tangent sprawled out over two pages.  After realizing that I went down a rabbit hole, (Charts, diagrams, statistics, and more boring stuff) I hit “Select All” followed by “Backspace.” Data, numbers, and statistics disappeared in the blink of a cursor. Money is always a touchy subject. We work hard and won’t stand for rhetoric on how to spend what we’ve earned. 

Everywhere we go, someone is trying to get us to spend our money. From my experience, I am certain Amazon is not helping. Drunk-shopping online leads to regrets, and that can to send us into a spiraling depression. On the bright side, we now have “gifts” being delivered. 

So, how do we get ahead of our bills?

Many books are written on this subject, so instead of giving a list here is something that helped me. Most of us work nine-to-five jobs. We get paid every two weeks. This means we earn two paychecks every month. But Wait! Four times twelve equals forty-eight, and there are fifty-two weeks in a year. This leaves us with four weeks not accounted for. 

This is true. There are two months when we earn three paychecks. If we budget each month for only two paydays, we can pay ourselves a month’s worth of wages each year. 

Now before we get excited, this money is already spent. It’s called “Savings.” I know. This is so exciting. I have goosebumps too. Seriously though, we need to shove this into a hole and forget about it. 

Might I also add, pay raises are awesome. Who doesn’t enjoy more cash. I hate to be the fun police, but once again, we are taking that extra candy and shoving it into “Savings.” 

Believe me when I say there will always be a reason to spend the money we save. This is where discipline is applied. Only use “Savings” to cover unexpected expenses. It’s not for Christmas, birthdays, or “but-they’re-the-new-Jordans”, or any want-list driven impulsive buy. Nope, the money we throw in to a hole is for emergencies and unexpected bills. 

For those who are in the midst of raising little rug rats, wouldn’t it be nice to get something back when the nest is empty. Their rooms will become vacant and we will have a chance to have a workout room, a study, or even a guest room for when our friends come over. Or we could fix up the old four bedroom home, sell it, and buy a two-bedroom lake-front cabin. 

We deserve to have a safety net when life throws a curve ball. Having that money stashed away is the difference between being stressed or being prepared. Life will come at us. Its only a matter of when. Be prepared. 

We do not deserve to choose between paying the electric bill, water bill, or eating. Many Americans face this every month. If we are not in this situation, then we are able to put a portion of our paycheck into the bank. There was a time when I couldn’t save. Times were tight. But, I grew and learned how to manage. At the time, everyone seemed to have fun but me. I was too busy looking at what I didn’t have. I couldn’t see what I did have. 

A stable job, a roof over my head, food in my belly, and a wife who loved me unconditionally. In the beginning of my career there were too much month and not enough money. I took the advice in this blog, and climbed out of my poverty. I am far from what society calls rich. My bills fit my paycheck and I have a little each month to put back. I don’t tend to my wants. I find satisfaction in what I have. Most importantly, I am happy, and finding that happiness is priceless. 

Until the next blog, live life, be happy and click the like. Thank you for your time.

Subtle Change For The Better

If we could change anything about our lives, what would it be? 

Upon hearing this question, gears in our heads turn, and a list begins to grow. Perhaps we would be a better person, be a better parent, lose weight, be more muscular, and last but not least make more money. These are typical responses that show we are first concerned with changing our character, how we treat others, how we look and ending with material objects. The order of changes may vary from person to person, but we all have similar desires. 

Without a doubt, this is a complex question, and we are most apt to find a quick and easy solution. This is why “be better” is on the list. But what does it mean to be better? Your definition may differ from mine. And that’s alright; my point is we need to be precise and clear when we state our wishes. 

I like to use the example of giving a twenty-dollar bill. People, for whatever reason, claim they want more money. So, let’s say you give me twenty dollars. I run off and buy a new pillow. This is where we hit the pause button and look at what happened. Did I want money, or did I want the pillow? Another view may suggest that I wanted the opportunity to buy something for myself. By purchasing the product myself, I feel more independent than if someone provided it for me. I also know what I like and have an opportunity to pick out the right softness or firmness I desire. Thus, making me feel in control. The point is, I didn’t want the twenty-dollar bill. It’s not like I was going to keep and cherish it. No, I wanted a provision, a way, or a means to achieve my goal. 

Where does this leave us when it comes to improving our lives? We need to make the change. If others make the change for us, then we have someone to blame when things go wrong. We need to hold ourselves accountable. After all, this is our life, and we are in control.

Make a list of small changes, and do them one at a time. If we don’t know what changes to make or where to start, a quick visit to the international web of wonder will help. Just type in “small changes to a better life.” Be careful. We don’t want to overload the day with new routines. This will lead to confusion, unbalance, and the desire to quit. 

With all of this talk about changes, it’s important to remember that self-acceptance is important. We should never want to become someone else. Instead, we should focus on who we are and who we want to be. For example, I wanted to be happy. Life in the military is stressful, and happiness does not flourish as it does in the civilian world. I also want to own my own home and have a good-paying job. I joined the military and used it as a foundation for my dreams. My stubbornness to succeed gave me the strength to endure the repugnant moments that I had when dealing with my new career restrictions. I give the military a lot of credit for allowing me to appreciate the “little things” in life. By chance, I gained knowledge on a specific aircraft that I presently work on in my retirement. And finally, I used the VA to get a loan to buy our home. This path isn’t for most. In fact, I would never promote this progression to anyone. I knew that I needed to change. This started with a list with only three items: happiness, a home, and a good-paying job. 

Never underestimate the power of a list backed by determination. When we know what to do, how to do it, and when to do it, there is nothing that can stop our drive forward. Making our world a better place starts with us and our self-improvement. 

Until the next blog, live life, be happy and click the like.

Three Statements About Us

In the blog Little Limbic, we covered how stress can affect the brain’s limbic system development. Then, in the blog Hope: A Poor Child’s Dream To Succeed, we questioned if a child born into poverty can succeed in life or are we to believe that child is destined for poverty and a life of crime? 

2+2=4 This is an easy math problem to understand. 1+1+1+1=4 is just as comprehendible. Notice how we changed the integers, but the sum remains the same. It is the same with our lives. Some changes in our lives will lead us back to our current situation. 

Let’s say we had a troubled friend who we support and sent through rehab. After going through the course and becoming clean, they move back to the same house, hang out with the same friends, and pick up where they left off. There is a high probability that despite our help, that individual will continue to be our troubled friend.

Back to us and our lives, what can we do to change our lives for the better? First, I’d like to say that we all have the right to better our lives if we so choose. We do not have the right to use and manipulate others to achieve our goals. Secondly, we need to recognize when enough is enough. “Want” is a bottomless pit that we will never fill. We will always want more. This is the reason Samsung created a 146” TV. Some people believe they need this for their home. Will a TV that size fit through the door of my doublewide? 

Anywho. Boundaries have to be set and maintained. Limits are like destinations; they let us know when we can stop. Now, this doesn’t mean that we are to stay in the moment forever. We don’t take road trips then say OK; we can’t go anywhere else. No, we take time to enjoy the moment, absorb the scene, then move on. 

Might I add that absorbing the scene seems to be something people do little of nowadays? We are often in such a rush that we forget to stop and smell the roses. Roses want to be smelled, people. There is a severe lack of rose smelling, and I will not stand for it, ladies and gentlemen. Granted, this is stated while I’m in the northern hemisphere in the middle of February with no rose to smell. But still, I rant; smell the roses.

Now that we had that tangent, we can move forward. There is nothing wrong with being happy with having a little. Finding satisfaction is another action that we have little desire to do. Believe it or not, people are willing to trade their place in life with us. I have seen corporate people who dreamed of living a simple life without the bustle of the city. And, I’ve seen people in the country dream about living in the city. We should always appreciate what we have; just as it could be better, it could worsen. 

Thirdly, we must place value on our lives. I’m not talking about dollar amounts. I’m speaking about having a sense of worth. We deserve to be happy, and we deserve respect. Notice this I said we deserve these things. We do not demand them. If someone is not willing to respect us, then let them be. If they will not let us be, we need to take proper channels to report the situation. If nothing is done, then we need to change our position. Why should we change? Because this system mentioned is not willing to help. We cannot and will not change the system. We must go where we are accepted and respected. Now for a reality check. Let’s say we have changed our position repeatedly, and no matter where we go, people still don’t respect us. Then, it’s time to look at ourselves. Seek counseling if need be. Sometimes we get so narcissistic that we believe everyone else is the problem. We fail to see that we are the ones causing trouble in our own lives. 

If we are to find happiness, we must be honest with ourselves. We may not like the answers, but at least we have a solid foundation to build on. Trust me on this one. I had to swallow my pride and admit that I caused a lot of my own problems. I had that moment when I looked in the mirror and said, “I fucking suck.” I don’t suck, and the expletive signifies the level of disappointment I had when I realized I was my own stumbling block. That’s a hard pill to swallow. 

Where do we go from here? How do we head towards happiness? That will be next week’s blog. 

Until then, live life, be happy, find life’s happiness, and click “like”.

Hope: A Poor Child’s Dream To Succeed

Last week on A Life’s Happiness, we covered the brain, specifically the limbic system. If you missed it, no worries. A simple click on Little Limbic and a short two-minute read will get you all caught up.

We ended with the question, “Is an abused child destined to grow up poor and live a life of crime?” Statistically speaking, yes. But the truth is not cut and clear, and here’s why.

Let’s take an average child of three years old. If anyone has been around these critters, they will quickly find out how fast that toddler comprehends conversations. New words are in style. If that new word is an expletive, most of the room will giggle when they use it (correctly or not). What child doesn’t like to make grownups giggle, right? 

Our little sponge-brain child is soaking up information at an expedited rate. Positive or negative, it all gets collected. Any data that is perceived as “bad” may start to cause chronic stress. It is common knowledge that a three-year-old child’s problems may not compare to a 40+ adult’s difficulties. But they do not know that. In fact, they can’t fathom the complexities of adulthood. This may be because our said child has only lived on this planet for 36 months. At this stage in life, learning is an every hour experience. 

Let’s put some age on our child, perhaps ten years. Oh, they grow up so fast. The bad news is the stressful life hasn’t stopped. Every day they receive hurtful words, a fist, or maybe neglect. Whether they mean to be or not, children can be annoying in stressful times, and adults can lose control of their temper. I’m not condoning, just saying it happens. In a house that lives in poverty, basic needs become a priority. But this scenario isn’t limited to the poor. This child could be in a middle/upper-class family. But given that financial problems cause the most considerable amount of stress, it’s easy to understand why children in a low-income household have a higher chance to receive physical or mental abuse.

As covered in last week’s blog, stress can inhibit the development of the limbic system’s hippocampus region. Learning, memory, and emotions are affected. We have to live with what our parents give us. They mold us made us into who we are. Kind of…

We are responsible for our actions. I have heard others announce that so-and-so made them mad. Let’s be honest; no one made us angry. Our frustration is the direct result of our disapproval of other’s actions or words. Whether we want to admit it, we are not always in the right. There are times that a cross-word from a friend or peer is warranted. Perhaps we were the ones inciting dismay with others. 

Getting back to our young-adult, where does that leave them? A quick web search of “percentage of children succeed after poverty” reveals that only sixteen percent of young adults become financially stable or prosperous after being raised in poverty. An environment can have a significant effect on our development. 

As depressing as this may sound, hope resides within the simple truth that we are continuously growing. If we change the environment, we change the development. This happens over time. Suppose we put a muddy sponge in a freshwater spring. It doesn’t instantly become clean. Over time, the mud is carried away, and the sponge can be used once again. 

How do we move on? Suppose we are the previously mentioned child who is now trying to strike it on their own. How do we repair the damage and move forward? With hope in sight, that will be the discussion for next week. 

Until the next blog, live life, be happy and click the like button. 

Little Limbic?

The brain is a marvelous creation like none other. It determines how we react to situations and our environment. Dopamine released at the right time can relax us, while adrenalin can get us pumped up for action. With such an organ controlling everything our body does, one could question if we are really in control.

Taking a closer look at our brain, we can find segments and defined regions. Each region governs different controls. For example, the medulla oblongata controls eye movement, breathing, blood pressure, and heart rate. At the lower temporal section, we will find the limbic system. Note: the term “limbic” system is antiquated, but for simplicity, I choose to use it in this blog. 

The limbic system has two horn-like sectors on each temporal side that controls spatial memory. This is the hippocampus. Have you ever revisited a city and remembered how to navigate the roads. That, my friend, is the hippocampus at work. 

The funny thing about the hippocampus is that it can decrease in size when a person is exposed to stress. This will result in the loss of long-term memories. Adults who have experienced abusive childhoods often have considerable gaps in their memories. The size of this region is smaller in Alzheimer’s patients and those with dementia. 

Another exciting find comes in the form of learning. Earlier, we mentioned that the hippocampus controls long-term memories. This means events in the “now” are not correctly stored. Thus, when it’s time to remember that memory is not there. Welcome to the foundation of some learning disabilities. 

It is fundamentally accepted that abused or neglected children suffer academically. I’d like to point out the stress they are placed under and the duration. For most, there is no way out of this abuse. Stockholm’s syndrome may play a part in this, but I believe their refusal to leave exists within the bond between parent and child. 

So is an abused child destined to grow up poor and live a life of crime? We’ll find out more next week as we continue this discussion. 

Until the next blog, live life, be happy and click the like button.  

Found Happiness, Now What.

As an aviation electrician, I work with a lot of test sets. Each box has its use, which means I need to know how to connect and operate these 1970 era relics. That got me thinking about happiness. 

How often do we find happiness then, not know what to do? It’s as though we are always told to “find our happiness” but never told what to do once we find it. Of course, the obvious answer is “Enjoy it.”  But, stopping to smell the roses doesn’t come easy for some of us. 

And just like that, frustration sets in, and we lose the happiness we were searching for. It’s not difficult to comprehend the negative impact of the spiraling domino effect caused by our newfound depression. 

We’ve also heard that we must maintain our happiness to enjoy it for any length of time. True as this may be, how do we keep what we don’t even know how to enjoy? 

If this sounds familiar, then I have one word for you. Stop. Due to my over-analytical thinking, I have found myself fighting to stay happy. The statements above are how happiness feels to me at times. 

Happiness is a state of being, not a state of mind. It’s a product of our actions, not what we manufacture. Thus, there is no such thing as maintaining happiness. There is, however, finding moments that make us smile, bring a warm feeling in our hearts, and lifts our spirits. 

A church building doesn’t bring happiness. It’s just a building. But the experience within the walls, the sermons felt, and the fellowship with friends is what warms our soul. For the record, I don’t attend church. My spiritual studies are done in private. I remember church experiences from my youth. 

Take time each day to search for new experiences. This is a must as we get older. What made us happy in our 20’s will most likely annoy us in our 40’s. Trust me; the club scene is not what it use to be, and forget about staying out all night. If the sun’s down, I’m down. How else could I be up at 3 a.m. writing this blog? 

Anywho, just as we cannot control the scent of a rose, we cannot control what makes us happy. Sure, jumping off of a cliff and catching an updraft in a hang-glider looks fun. But I just can’t see myself doing it. This brings me to another point. Never force happiness. If we try something new and it doesn’t make us happy. Move on. We are not expected to like everything, and our joy is not others’ responsibility.  

We all want to find happiness, and we all want that feeling to stay. Like a sine wave on an oscilloscope, our emotions will go up and down. This is a natural rhythm that everyone experiences. Don’t take the small things in life for granted. Focus on the positive things, count our blessings daily, and relax. These are the things we can do to find our happiness. 

Never think that you do not deserve to be happy. You deserve happiness. There is nothing we can do to change the past. We can dwell on it, go nowhere, or move on. Late-night thoughts can hound us and build a case on why we don’t deserve happiness. Memories of our mistakes get stuck in a loop as we watch our ignorance play over and over. 

Come to terms with these memories. 

Yes, we do stupid things. Welcome to being human. 

Until the next blog, get some rest, stop worrying, and find life’s happiness.