The secret of happiness in 5 easy steps

(Di nuovo, scusate italiani ma non ho proprio tempo di tradurre tutto. Usate google translate! ☺)

I feel the need to specify something.
I am a happy person.
There are reasons why I’m happy, or rather, the things that I have and am in my life that make me happy are not the result of “luck”, they are an attainment, an achievement, of very specific work, and I continue to do that work (described below), in order to ensure I continue to be happy.
I came across some interesting self-help, positive-thinking, whatever posts today. As always, since always, I read that stuff and I think why do they need to point it out? And that’s because most people don’t do what I consider so natural and obvious. And because sometimes you need to have someone repeat it to you, even if you do it instinctively, to remind you.

These are MY secrets to happiness:

1) If I don’t like something, I complain. Quite loudly sometimes. I tend to complain to the person responsible for what I don’t like, admittedly, rather than to anybody else. If I do share with someone else my complaint about someone (or a situation) that is causing me to complain, it is to get a different perspective, or to remind myself of my healthy one. So, my complaining is accompanied by…
2) Loving, and accepting, criticism. I may not always like it there and then, nobody does, but I always take it on board, some would say too much, but I always listen to anybody’s criticism: the guy walking down the street, the teacher, the stupid student, a friend. That is because everyone’s criticism of you, whatever they say about you, is something they are seeing. Ok sometimes it is solely and completely their eyes mistaking them, but it’s quite more likely that a certain type of person responds to a certain quality of yours in a certain way. It is always a good idea to know what kind of reactions you can cause, and to whom, and to decide whether you like them or not. You MAY decide that “hey, I piss him off? Fantastic! I want to carry on doing that!” But still, it’s always worth knowing all criticisms of you. A while ago concerned people would say to me that was bad for my self-esteem, actually, it was brilliant. After years and years of criticism and praise, I know which aspects of me I like and which I don’t, and decide everyday what to do with them. I achieved one of the obsessions of my life: knowing myself. Any new criticism, especially if it comes as a surprise, is fantastic: it means there is still more to know about me, there is still more to find out and think about.
3) Be passionate. Yes, I even read this on a blog post  about it. My problem has always been the opposite: “You’re too intense” I was told, over and over and over again. However, feeling deeply is an extremely powerful drive to making things happen. So many things get in the way of making things happen for you, don’t they? Well they are ALL you, and only you. Here, it says so even here:
Obviously, when it comes to greater barriers, such as, I don’t know, trying to be a fast runner when you have no legs, look to better people than me, as that is indeed a greater challenge, yet even that is not impossible.
But when it comes to not having any real physical barriers to doing something, all that stops you is you. I rarely complain about not being rich, because I am very aware of what I should do to become rich, and I am not prepared to do it in the least. I am aware of the limitations I pose myself, I simply weigh up, thanks to my passion, how important things are to me, and have no regrets in following what was more important: because I didn’t get to that decision by reasoning, and therefore there is no risk of me making a rational decision and then, years later, realise and regret that I made the wrong decision. Passion is a fantastic driving force.
4) Change, change, change. Keep the flow going. As age progresses, you become less and less flexible, physically as well as mentally (unless you are like me, where growing older means my hypermobility has increased, and so, funnily enough, my mental approach to being flexible. I have become more flexible, not less: before there were countless things I felt obliged to do, despite my gypsy and rebellious nature. As I grow older, I see less impediments to having things exactly the way I wish them to be. Perhaps it’s slowly realising I no longer fear dad’s disapproval? I don’t know, I just know that I more often than not say “I want to do this.” “I shouldn’t.” “And why not, exactly?” And I am often left without a real reason. But this isn’t the point. The point is, the longer you don’t change, the less change will come easy to you. You don’t need to FORCE change, but you can change what you don’t like, at least, and changing what you don’t like is not always the result of time and hard work. Time runs fast, we invented computers to go faster, go, move, do and then think.
5) Work on your strengths, not your weaknesses! After conversing with a friend about this new system that is a very positive approach in work situations, I realise how yes, that changes everything! We are constantly trying to rectify the things about us we consider negative, for whatever reason we won’t even get into right now, but the easiest, most sensible approach, is surely to go where the resistance is less, and expand on that! Doing Nanowrimo I understood, there are a million thousand reasons why I started so many books and never progressed. So many million reasons why I tried to start with a plan for a book, as recommended by people who are good at following plans, and failed miserably every time. What works FOR ME, is to do something, THEN think about it. So I left my job (which was making a nervous wreck of me on a constant basis) – admittedly I did think I was going to get some government money but it turned out I wasn’t going to, but now the decision was made, so I had to carry on!) – and started to write. Without a plan, a synopsis. Without money coming in. First do then think, While you do something you love adrenaline is high, and thoughts flow more easily: your situation become clearer and you start fixing things as you go along. In order to fix things, you will fix them with YOUR methods, using YOUR strengths, and not focus on your weaknesses, as they will only lead to worry.
So yes, those are my 5 secrets.
So now, when you see me complain, when you see me being sad, if you see me angry or upset at something, be happy, because it’s me working towards carrying on being happy.

Comfort is the greatest killer of all.

Complain. Loudly too.
Love, accept and be grateful for criticism
Be passionate
Embrace change, embrace flow
Rely on your strengths; don’t focus on your weaknesses.


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