Shoes, Feet and the Art of Happiness

This time of economic meltdown gives one pause for thought about how we have lived (before the meltdown) and how we need to change our behaviors in this rapidly changing world. Many experts are blaming this fiscal mess on greed, and not just with the banking industry. There is enough greed to spread around everywhere and everyone. I am reminded of a cartoon I saw recently where the caption read: “I have one of everything, I just don’t have it in every color.” Yes, the caption is funny, but very likely based on some element of truth. While the economic situation can be viewed as stressful, particularly if money is tight, we can try to see the bigger picture (a stress technique called reframing). This period serves as a great time to reflect on our stress-prone behaviors regarding our own fiscal management and start to make some corrections as we chart our course from here on out. Years ago I came across an autobiography by Robin Lee Graham titled, The Dove. It’s the story of a 16-year old who sailed around the world solo. One quote I remember vividly from his book was this: “It’s not how much we need to get buy, but how little we need.” Gandhi said it this way: “There is enough for everyone’s need, but not for everyone’s greed.” If your happiness is based on material possessions, then now might be a great time to start focusing on those priceless intangible things that also provide happiness. Perspective helps too. Another quote, I think from the depression, says: “I felt sorry for myself because I had no shoes, until I met a man with no feet.” If you get a chance to pick up The Dove, its a great read and given these times we are in, its helps put things about material posessions in perspective. Not to mention true happiness!

• Stress Tip for the Day:
Take inventory of what you do have and give thanks. Its hard to be down in the dumps when you are showing gratitude. Try this: Make a list of ten things that you are grateful for in your life. If you can’t think of ten things, start with the fact that you can breathe. If you can think of more than ten, go for it, then past this list some place where you can see it daily.

• Photo of the Day
This photo of the Napali Coast was taken by me on a cruise around the Hawaii Islands last year. The sailboat gives the rugged coast the scale to really appreciate its full beauty.

• Quote for the Day:

“It’s not how much you need to get by, but how little you need to get by.”
— Robin Lee Graham

Next Post
Brian Luke Seaward

Author Brian Luke Seaward

More posts by Brian Luke Seaward

Leave a Reply