The Art of Happiness

Do you know how your thoughts drift you away from your fulfilled and happy life? Maybe you always thought that happiness is butterfly which is always slipping through your fingertips?

the art of happiness

I’m not going to give you a definition of what ‘happiness’ is. Each of us has his own definition, which is in accordance with our values and belief system.

Lately, I’ve been watching “The affair” TV series. The main protagonist, Noah Solloway, had it all. A beautiful and loving wife, 4 healthy kids and a cosy home in the city. Yet, he was not happy. Later on, in the next seasons, he divorced his wife, took another woman and had a baby with her. Yet, he was not happy. I won’t spill the beans of how it all ends.

How many of you out there are like Noah Solloway?

Never happy with what you have. Never knowing what you actually want. Not appreciating what you have. Drifting through life insatiably.

HAPPINESS IS ANOTHER FORM OF CREATION. YOU DESIGN IT WITH YOUR THOUGHTS.

Sounds easy, hm? Easy for someone who is well aware of the power of our thoughts and is already using it.

What if, let’s say, you grew up in a poor family with a negative view on everything? What if all your friends around complain about how hard it is to earn well or to meet a good life partner? What if you don’t believe in yourself, because no one else believes in the success of your business idea?

Discover 5 mental habits on how you can create more happiness in your life.

1. PERCEPTION

The first step on your way to happiness is the ability to perceive good things in your life. If you go through your day thinking only about the bad stuff, bad weather, bad boss and lack of money, no wonder you attract it in your life.

Think about the positive things that happened during your day. Maybe someone gave you a smile on the tram or you drank a cup of your favourite coffee?

2. GRATEFULNESS

Every morning, straight after your wake-up, think about 4 things that you are grateful for today. The more positive things you perceive the higher your happiness level 🙂

3. LETTING GO

Let go of grudges ad anger towards people in your life. Are you still angry with your parents that they criticise you all the time? Time to let go. Time to give a hug to your dad and tell him how much you love him. Holding grudges and anger destroys you inside. As soon as you let go, regardless of the other person’s feelings, you find peace and clear off your head from negative emotions.

4. PURSUE YOUR DREAMS

Have dreams. Dare to dream and fulfil your dreams. This can give you so much power when you’re on your way to creating the life you want. You dream about meeting your other half? Then go out more, socialise, have the courage to meet new people.

5. APPRECIATE YOUR ROOTS

Even if you don’t like your family town or you have difficult relations with your parents, learn to appreciate your roots. Your family gave you everything they could. They fed you, educated you and loved you. Yes. Even when they didn’t know how to show this love. You owe them respect. They created you. Thanks to them you could come to this world and experience this life. Learn to appreciate it.

Let me end this post with a quote from my favourite philosopher Marcus Aurelius:

“Very little is needed to make a happy life; it is all within yourself in your way of thinking”

And what’s your view on that?

Let me know in comments.

Do you judge people by their looks? Three reasons you should.

“Don’t judge a book by its cover”. This saying is quite well ingrained in our brain. However, we do exactly the opposite, as we are steered by our biology. We judge men who pass us by on the street, we judge if the pineapple is ripe enough by looking at its colour and skin. Every day we analyse thousands of things, which lighten up our brain just like the lightening on the stormy sky. But with one small exception – we hear no thunder. 

When you see a woman the first thing you do is you analyse (yes, big thanks to our subconscious brain) her looks and physical potential.

That’s how our ancestors (the cave men) where judging if a woman was able to give them healthy offspring. We, women, also judge men. Though physical looks is a little less important for us. What matters for women is whether the man they choose is able to protect them and their children. To take care of them. To be the real man who is not afraid of taking decisions.

We can cheat ourselves, but we cannot cheat biology.

1. WHEN YOU JUDGE LOOKS – YOU JUDGE CHARACTER

Physical appearance is important. It’s something more than just a neat face and a nice ass. Good looks is character, because nice asses and faces do not fall from the sky, nor they are given by a magic long-haired fairy.

The truth is that to look good you need to put some effort into it. A beautiful body, sexy ass and slim belly are not genetically passed on. At least, not in 80% of the cases. You simply need to work for it and this is the place where your character comes in and opens the doors. Will you have enough stamina and motivation to go through?

Marc was recently training a girl who was working in banking at Paradeplatz. He noticed that after the training she ate a bowl of a healthy salad, immediately followed by three chocolate bars. He saw it and simply uttered: “Once you pop, you can’t stop. Life is a no dolce vita baby. Either you go for the schoggi bars and cheat yourself that “you wanna be beautiful” or you get down to a plank and work these bars off“.

Character is the key to your looks.

2. IN HEALTHY BODY HEALTHY SPIRIT

Let’s discuss another example. This time of Maria, a good-looking woman in her forties working for a cryptocurrency company. “How would I feel arriving at work knowing I didn’t shower, didn’t eat my healthy breakfast and put the clothes I really dislike? Awful. I do it for myself to stay healthy and also to the people I love like my husband and daughter. Well, everybody enjoys being in the company of a good-looking and well cared-for women. Here in Switzerland, we call it “gut gepflegt”. We once were looking for office assistant and the manager employed one woman. On her first day she came to the office and she looked like taken straight from bed. Hair flying in all directions, no make up, no neat clothing. When I see such people I know they don’t take good care of themselves. Maybe lack of self-love is the issue…

A healthy and good-looking body is a sign of your good mental health. If you’re a couch potato everybody will be able to see it without having asked you. Your body and your attitude to it will show it.

3. SELF-LOVE AS A TOOL ENABLING LOVING OTHER PEOPLE

Have you ever wondered why you have your body? It serves you so well, it keeps you moving, it digests all the fast things which you sometimes feed it. Yet you fail to look after it. Your avatar is the cosmic suit for your soul. The way you look and the way you treat it shows how much you love yourself.

Yes, loving yourself. Do you remember the biblical commandment “Love your neighbour like yourself“? Hm. Loving yourself was put on the 1st position. Only then, you can love other people.

Taking care of your body and looks is an act of self-love. Stop for a moment and think: how much time per day you think about other people and how to please them? Then, compare how much time you devote to taking care of yourself. What was the last time you went to the SPA or to the gym?

The hard truth is that you don’t look like the best version of yourself, because you don’t love and accept yourself. If you did, you would know that you are a unicorn, not a sheep, and you deserve to be treated like one.

Heads up unicorns! Look in the mirror and say to yourself: “Yes, I am a unicorn. And I love myself”.

First step done. Congratulations! Now it’s time to hit the gym and burn the chocolate bars of the cage circling your looks.

Plantation of Creativity Team

How to exercise at home? The power of habit.

“I tried to exercise at home, but after the first push-up I couldn’t move up from the floor…” How many of you experience the feeling of helplessness when you finally decide to exercise?

Perhaps you will say: “I have kids, a full time job and a husband”. Yes. The famous excuse of us all. Even some of us who are healthy singles in their thirties are “too busy” to find time to exercise at home or to go to the gym…

Instead, you start your morning with a ‘schoggi gipfel’ (Swiss name for a chocolate croissant) and a bucket of coffee. Personally, I have nothing against gipfels, but a gipfel a day will certainly not keep the doctor away.

You know it so well. Do sport, eat healthy, meditate, think positive…. Yeah. But when? When is always the question, which is left with no good answer.

HOW TO START WHEN YOU’RE BUSY AS A BEE?

1. Write how your typical day looks like on paper.

Usually, the biggest part of our days takes our job. Write down your daily activities and you’ll see that you’ll find a 45 minutes window of time, even when you thought that it was impossible. How about making time at lunch break for the gym?

Example: 6:45 a.m. – wake up time, 8:30-18:00 work, 19:00 shopping/cooking/meeting friends/family time/watching TV/sitting on facebook etc.

Cut on some unproductive activities like sitting on facebook and hit the gym instead. Wake up one hour earlier and do some yoga at home. You don’t even need a yoga mat. Bare floor is really enough.

2. Write your goal.

“I wanna be more fit”  – it is too general. Why don’t you make it more concrete? “I want to lose 5 kg”, “I want to fit in size 38” , “I wanna be able to chase my children on the playground with no panting”  – they all sound better. Why? Because they are measurable. You can measure how many kg you lose and how many cm disappear from you belly. You measure the progress of your exercise. And this motivates you even more.

3. Install a new habit.

You wanna burn the fat that you have cultured like your own crop, right? Now the time has come to saw. Then you will reap. But before you explode with happiness with your new body, some dirty work is waiting to be done. Don’t deceive yourself that it will be easy. No. It will be very difficult. It all comes down to installing a new habit and simply going for it. Regularly.

GYM OR HOME?

Whether you decide to exercise in a gym or at home, it doesn’t matter as soon as you do the work. Wind up your sleeves and prepare for a hard work in the field. Imagine you’re a farmer and the field is your body.  Have you ever imagined what immense work does the farmer do from the moment he plants his crops until he harvests it?

INSTALLING A NEW HABIT

Are you acquainted with the theory of Pavlov’s dog? In short, this is a theory of classical conditioning. A certain stimulus can produce a response. We won’t get too much into details. What is important is that you can create your own theory of conditioning and adapt it for your fitness goals.

Imagine you want to instal a habit of exercising 30 minutes at home every day or going to the gym 3 times a week. How to motivate yourself? Sometimes images of slim and sporty body are not enough to keep you going. Then, you can introduce a stimulus. Just like Ivan Pavlov made it with the dog.

Think about something which could be a reward for sticking to your exercise plan and executing it. This can be eating your favourite dish or even a croissant. The thing is to treat it as something special to keep up your motivation. So no 3 croissants per day or no pizza after workout. But a home-made pizza once a week? Why not?

Last but not least, don’t push it too hard and remember to love yourself the way you are. Exercising is taking care of your body. That’s how you show your love to it.

Make progress. Not excuses. Make the time for your precious body, which is you. Get fit for life, not just for summer. Your “Pavlov’s dog” is definitely going to help you. No eat up without a sit up 🙂

Wishing you success in installing your new habits!

Plantation of Creativity Team