As you may know, I am an avid reader of novels. This delightful quotation comes from the clever and astute writer Elizabeth Peters:
That's a tricky one, isn't it?
“…enjoy the moment without allow unhappy memories….”
Unfortunatly, unhappy memories have a way of tripping us up when we least expect them. There we are, trotting merrily along when suddenly, Wham! We’re face-first in a past experience, old wounds re-opened and bleeding.
I’ve been stumbling over one icky old memory lately: Someone whom I thought was friendly towards me - a family connection - said something hurtful, something that wounded me. I won’t go into details, tempting though it is - really, really tempting though it is. Suffice to say, it hurt, but it happened twenty years ago, for gosh sakes, and I’ve done my best to put it out of my mind.
Every once in a while, however, something triggers the memory and BLAM! I get to experience the shock of being summarily rejected, all over again. Bletch! It’s like I’ve time-travelled right back to the initial event.
I didn’t want to come here. I don’t like being here yet again. It’s not my choice, not by any means! But here I am, reliving the moment: I walk into the room. She turns to me and says …
Oh, but I said I wouldn’t go into details, didn’t I? Gosh it’s easy to get sucked back into that unhappy, unpleasant moment. The question is, how do I avoid getting into this time-machine of memory? That’s the question!
What is it that our quotation says? “…without allowing unhappy memories….”
Allowing? Is that what I’ve been doing? Allowing this unhappy memory to take over my mind? Is it not that I am going back to that moment, but rather, that I’m allowing that moment to leapfrog the years from then to now, to lodge in my thoughts? I am (somehow) allowing this to happen? If so, I am more than ready to
I am ready to disallow that memory. Here’s my promise to myself: Any time I find myself beginning to recall what she said, I will stop and … and what?
Here’s one of the Big Secrets of mental discipline and mind-control: We must have some other behavior, some different thought, to subsitute for the Unwanted. For example:
I might decide that every time I catch myself wallowing around in that particular ugly memory, I will instead Begin to count my blessings. That would work.
Or I could decide to remember something else, something pleasant like sitting on the beach with my sister last week. I could happily occupy my mind with the shining details of that memory. It might not be the shining present, as our quote recommends, but it’s a pretty good step-up from dark memories, would you agree?
THE TRICK is to have something pre-planned, a happy distraction.
By heck, I could even begin to welcome the yucky memory as a reminder to use some of my get-happy tricks and end up being even happier! How cool would that be? Bring on the old unhappy memories, they don't scare me no more!
PS: To follow this Happiness blog, go HERE Meanwhile, enjoy your shining moments ;)
I think our book should maybe be called Do This, Get Rich instead of The Science of Getting Rich.
That’s the promise, after all: If we follow the author's instructions (Do This!) we’ll get rich. Oh goody, right? Or … Maybe not?
Frankly, I'm not 100% sure that I really and truly want to get rich. Consider some of the common clichés about rich people and poor people, cliches such as:
The Poor have always been with us.
True, right? There’s no arguing with that statement. There have always been poor folk, alas. And let's consider the corollary as well: The rich have always been with us. Also true, yes? Yes.
A very large proportion of the population of this planet would say that there is a cause-and-effect relationship between these two statements, ie,
There are poor people because there are rich people.
Now that scares me. I know it isn’t true, and probably you do too, but oh gosh! There are a lot of people who do believe it and who consider it good enough reason to hate the rich. That's the hatred that fueled the guillotine, the savagery of the Bolshevik revolution, the Nazi pogroms, etc. Scary stuff my friends!
I feel sorry for the haters, as well as being sorry for them. They are operating under a fallacy; blaming others for my circumstances, aka, victim-mentality, is an error of understanding.
The truth is that there always had been, and always will be
Those who are rich
Those who are poor,
Those in transition.
Some of the Transitioners (to coin a term) are getting richer, others are getting poorer. According to our book, the reason some folks get richer is because they operate according to certain scientific principles. Oddly enough, except for a very few, most of the getting- richer group use “How to Get Rich” principles more or less by accident. Likewise the people who are getting poorer do it by accidentally using “How to Get Poor” principles - blame, victimhood, hatred, etc. In truth, what we think and believe (plus the actions based on such thoughts and beliefs) is what creates our financial status. It really is all about what we hold to be true.
If I want to transition to a richer state of being, then I must do what the Getting-Richer do: operate according to certain proven principles, the chief of which is this tricky one:
My Thoughts Create My Reality
That being the case, I really, really need to get rid of this useless idea that It’s dangerous to be rich.
If I carry on using that, I’ll either avoid transitioning into a richer state or I’ll create some nice lovely dangers as sauce for my riches.
Sheesh. I don’t like either of those options!
The only way to avoid this lose-lose dilemma is to STOP believing that it is Dangerous to be Wealthy. Somehow, I have to replace that worse-than-useless concept with a nice fluffy belief that
It is Safe for me to Get Rich
Bottom line, Those who believe it is good and safe and right to get rich, will do so. Those who don't, won't. I know which group I want to join! How about you?
All the Best Always, Elaine
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I’m in the airport on Maui, waiting for my flight home. As you know (because you’ve been following this blog) I credit myself with having created this delightful holiday with my sister.
I’m convinced it came into being as a result of by conscious and deliberate choice to be a happier person. The theory is that the happier we are, the more we attract circumstances designed to increase our happiness and by golly, it works! This leads to the question: Just how much happiness can we attract by being deliberatly happy?
Is there a limit to how much happiness we can attract by being deliberately happy?
I imagine this mood-raising work as a sort of metaphorical ladder. Each rung represents a mood or feeling that’s slightly higher and pleasanter than the one below. If there are 100 rungs, then I’ve spent most of my life on rungs 35 - 55. Occasionally I have accidentally clambered up higher or slipped down lower, but for the most part, I live in the familiar 35-sh to 55-ish mood.
Talk about boring!
That’s why I decided to climb up into a higher, happier zone this year. I hauled myself up to a rung that included my sister’s invitation to join her on for a week of beaches and sunshine. Nice! And it only took about three months. It makes me wonder what will happen after six months or a year of continually reminding myself, I choose to feel happy. I foresee two possibilities:
A. I attract more circumstances and events that are equivalent to this holiday OR
B. I attract things that are even more richly larded with the potential for nourishing feelings of happiness.
Frankly, I’m hoping for B. To be ungraciously honest, much as I appreciate the warmth and beauty of the island and enjoy my sister's company, I really wished tht my family (himself, our kids, the grandbaby) were here too, and that polluted my happiness. Darn.
Makes me wonder if 100% pure, unadulterated happiness is even possible. Off the top of my head, I cannot recall ...
Wait a minute! I lie; I do recall TWO incidences of unadulterated happiness: the birth of my babies. Despite all the painful messiness of childbirth, the first time I held each of those tender newborns, I experience nothing other than pure, blissful joy.
My initial failure-to-recall those two blissful moments as well as many other good and happy times is typical of we who habitually occupy the mid-to-lower rungs of our metaphoric ladder. It’s an excellent way to stop ourselves from getting all inappropriately happy and jolly.
Back to our initial question:
A or B, What Will Happen if I Continue to Choose Happiness?
My hope is that the experiences and circumstances I attract will become even better than this Hawaiian holiday. That hope brings up another question: How can I assure that I will attract even better? The only answer I come up with is: Dwell upon, talk about, remember the good stuff, and only the good stuff. In short, if I want to hang out on the higher rungs of the emotional ladder, I must, must, practice Mental Discipline.
Oh well. the horror of Mental discipline is a small price to pay for a life of happiness, which is what I intend to live. Even if this year of choosing happiness bring me nothing better (!) than this Hawaiian holiday, it will be an upgrade from the last 70+ years. I’m so up for that!
* * * * *
They’re starting to load my plane for the trip home. Goodbye lovely Maui, it’s been Fabulous.
All the Best Always, Elaine
There's a line towards the end of Chaptetr 4 that is both my favourite, and my least favorite:
"... there is only abundance."
Isn't that a lovely thought! Only abundance, nothing but abundance!
If only I could believe it. I can't. No wonder it is a least-favourite. Like a runaway tractor hitting a rock wall, it crashes headlong into all my beliefs and experiences. I've never experienced abundance, how can it be the only thing? This wall of mine is built of stone, mortared with emotions, and it's been standing for a very long time. There’s a part of me crying,
"Get that danged tractor out of here!"
Nothing but abundance! What nonsense is this?
However, I am determined to apply this Science of Getting Rich in my life, so I’m going to have to welcome that runaway tractor. Somehow or another I’m going to have to get it that
There’s nothing but abundance.