CH 10 Happiness Around Painful Relationship

Some relations we get by birth and more we choose from what we get on the way in life. Relationships are supposed to add flavour to life, a sense of support and belongingness comes along. It can be friendship, love or simple acquaintances, all play their roles, that can make or ruin the day. The intensity of pain or happiness is dependent on the attachment with the related person.

‘Bad choice of relationship in life is like the extra salt in an otherwise perfect dish. It can ruin the taste so bad, we feel, it was better when there was no salt at all.’

All relationships need efforts from both sides to sustain. We need to identify first if a relationship is worth fighting for or its for best to let go and move on. Doing so may be more complex then it may sound. But the painful relations, also popularly known as “toxic relations”, are usually un-repairable as they involve some kind of exploitation of one person by the other. It may be financial, political, social, or emotional exploitation where one person gains out of another person’s pain. Such relations are like infections, which can be fatal if not treated and removed.

It is not only the relationship in itself but also the social implications that come with it, that makes it complicated to resolve the issues. Even if breaking such relation may cause discomfort, one needs to focus on long term happiness benefits.

A simple trick I use to test the worth of any relationship is to imagine the loss that other person will feel if I am not around. ‘If he/she doesn’t care if you die(leave), he/she is not worth not dying for’. Turns out, it’s more simple then we thought.

‘when someone doesn’t care if you die, he/she is not worth not dying for’

While the relationships are meant to be mutual and that needs you to contribute your share with honesty and dedication. Its crucial not to loose sight of your happiness over the responsibility of sustaining the relationship. If you continuously find yourself unhappy then some change is required in any relationship. Change may not be drastic or negative always, but just something new or different to freshen up the relations and create scope for mutual happiness.

Blood relations and family ties are something that can not be changed or replaced. When such relations are painful they are in fact too painful. There is only a option to distance from this pain to be able to focus on one’s own happiness. If someone or even everyone call you selfish for that, be selfish … !!

Most important step in the journey towards sustainable happiness is to forgive and not forget who have hurt you.

Stay happy, stay selfish.. !!

Thanks for reading .. !!

CH 9

CH 11

दिल से दिल तक … 💞

दिल में चुबता सा एक ख्याल है , जो जाता नहीं,

कितना भी समझाऊं मैं ये दिल मुस्कुराता नहीं,

तुमको चाहता भी है और नाराज भी तुमसे रहता है,

जानना चाहता है ये, की दिल तुम्हारा क्या कहता है,

दूरियों की मजबूरी है या नजदीकियों से डरते हो,

क्या बात है? की जो इस राह से तुम कम गुजरते हो,

आते कभी फुर्सत से तो दिल की दिल से बात हो जाती,

नाराजगी भी इसकी शायद कुछ दूर लगे हाथ हो जाती,

पर तुम ख़ामोशी को ही हथियार की तरह चलाते हो,

कहते कुछ नहीं बस इस दिल को और थोड़ा जलाते हो,

इससे तो एक बार में ही ये किस्सा तमाम कर देते,

मोह्हबत है इससे कहकर इस दिल का काम कर देते,

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CH 9: Happiness Without Self ?

We all want to be happy. But what if, the factor of Self is missing. If someone does not value himself or herself. Is happiness even possible? I guess there is always a way, one should have the will to find it.

There can be one possibility, ‘being selfless‘. A person who has found salvation and devoted oneself to the greater good and spiritual explorations. There is no ‘self’ but there are happiness and peace. Although not impossible, this is a less probable option that most of us can relate with.

Other then the above, there is no happiness, unless we are happy with ourselves, to at least a minimum level of satisfaction. Lack of self-esteem is one of the major factors when we begin to doubt ourself, the satisfaction levels drop drastically. There is a lot of literature and self-help content available online and offline to help people realise their worth and revive their self-esteem. My personal favourite are listed below…..

Let Past be Past, easy and straight. Whatever have already happened can not be changed so crying over it, is counter productive. Best is to take the lesson and move on.

Out of control is Out of concern. Whatever is beyond your control and not infulenced by your actions is better left to happen. There is no use bothering about it.

Work on what you can change. Start with yourself, your looks, the way you talk, what you eat or anything that will make the situation better. Then Help others. Helping Others will raise self-esteem very quickly.

Be content. While there are genuine cases of depression and dispare, there are also lot of unnecessary grieving over non essential accomplishments. To keep world a happy place, people need to learn to diffrentiate between sorrow for necesscity and luxury.

Change the Reference Point. When you find yourself completely helpless, so much so that happiness seems impossible. Change the point of reference from where you are measuring your accomplishments. Best not to compare with others and try to better yourself from yesterday and not from 10 years before.

Its not your fault, and even if it is, forgive yourself. All that goes wrong is not always your doing. There is the whole universe responsible for what all happens. If someone has been in an accident and lost a leg or someone is suffering from an incurable disease, the will to enjoy life is hard to find. The First step is to believe in a better life and forgive all the causes of the pain, including yourself.

In short alter the prespective that suit to your situation to see the bright side. Just when you find the will to work on the Self Factor, improve everyday and make a happy life out of whatever situation you are in. Lastly seek help when you can not do it yourself, just like we take a cab when we can’t walk home.

Life is Beautiful believe it and Live it.

Stay Focused and Stay Healthy.. !!

CH 8

CH 10

CH 8 The Formula to the Balance of Happiness

The sense of happiness depends on how we are feeling. All positive emotions add to the happy state and all negative emotions reduce the chances to feel happy. Being content is not in human nature. However that is the source of all the glory that humanity has achieved, it also causes all the misery that exists in the world.

Life is not perfect. In fact, it’s not even smooth or easy. It’s funny that all of us are in constant stress over this consistent fact. To put it simply, life is never the way we want it to be, and this is because we always want something better then what we already have. A better location, a better job, a better house, a better set of clothes, a better environment, a better family (if that was even possible). The list is never-ending, so are the desires.

I discussed on the factors that influence our happiness in Ch 3 to Ch7 (links added below) of this blog. Now I would like to go back to the equation I introduced in Ch1 Fact-ors that influence our Happiness. Where assuming all factors are equally important and are contributing 25% each positively to our happiness, i.e.

Self(25%) + Home(25%) + Social(25%) + Family(25%) = Happiness(100%)

We may attain a state of 100% happiness, well that would be close to Nirvana. This is the ideal, hypothetical and in-fact impractical situation. But let us keep a benchmark of 60% to be reasonably happy, anything more than that is towards Bliss and less than that is the scope of improvement that we should focus on for our reasonable happiness.

So let us get real with the equation. One can have the varying status of contribution and satisfaction on each factor. Not all factors may contribute equally, Self maybe 30%, Social 30%, Home 25% and family maybe 15% for some people as a factor of importance and a very different balance for someone else. Similarly, satisfaction levels will be varied from person to person and from time to time.

Let’s say, for me, all factors are 25% important and I am 10% happy with my health and well being, 10% happy with my job and social status, 20% happy with my family and 15% happy with my home, husband and marriage. Adding all I have 55% happiness and 45% scope of improvement in my happiness.

Self(10%) + Home(15%) + Social(10%) + Family(20%) = Happiness(55%)

But had it been in my hand, I would have already improved my situation. Well that’s not entirely true, of the 45%, probably 30% is beyond my control, yet I can work on the rest 15%. If I could make improvement of only 5% in any one of the factors, I will be reasonably happy, which in turn might help improve another couple of percent on the health factor.

Just to mention here, the grading and % check is as per self-assessment and there is no certified tool to measure exact happiness levels. After all, it is a feeling and can’t be measured by anyone other than the person experiencing it. The key is to identify and work on the improvements that can be done to increase the percentage.

Most of the time we are lacking one or more of the factors contributing towards our happiness. Some of us have non-supporting families, others have toxic relationships, someone has a non-rewarding job, and someone is too sick to enjoy life. Even the one who has all the riches lacks something somewhere. So to maintain a balance in happiness, we will have to keep our desires listed and focus flexible on improvement.

In the next few Chapters in the sequence of this post, I shall try to discuss the variations of the equations with respect to some of ‘what if’ situations. Of which a few that I have personally faced and some other which I have known about from other people’s experiences. I am expecting a lot more of ‘what if’ situations in comments from the readers.

Thanks For reading. Previous Chapters links added below.

Stay tuned, Stay Happy …!!

Ch 0 The thought of being happy

Ch 1 Fact-ors that influence our Happiness

Ch 2 Why focus on Happiness at all ?

Ch 3 Taking care of ‘SELF’ is not Selfish

Ch 4 THE ‘SOCIAL’ (un)HAPPINESS PART 1 : JOB

Ch 5 THE ‘SOCIAL’ (un)HAPPINESS PART 2 : EXPECTATIONS

Ch 6 THE HAPPY HOME !

Ch 7 Family: The Ultimate Support Group

Ch 9 Happiness Without Self ?

CH 7 Family: The Ultimate Support Group

Family accepts you no matter what is your situation. We might be soaring high on our career and life, or be beaten down by recession or physical injury. Family is always there to cheer or support. Whoever can’t do that for us, are actually just relatives or acquaintances, not family.

Family in most cases includes parents, siblings, spouse, children if there are any, close friends and pets. However it depends person to person who all come under this ultimate support group.

It is said that you will know your true friends in your worst times, well same is true for the family. Not always we find the support or happiness that we are looking for in the immediate biological relations. There are other emotions like fear of added liability, where children abandon their parents, risk to social reputation where parents hurt their children or simple jealousy where siblings don’t get along. We can’t change other people perspective, what we can do is to understand it, and set our expectations accordingly.

There are people we lovingly term as ‘family beyond blood’, friends that compliment or sometimes even substitute for family. They may be school friends, neighbourhood friends, College friends, office friends or acquaintances turned friends. There are generally common interests or common problems that create and strengthen the bonding, based on understanding and support. Our lives grow parallel, which gives a lot to relate with each other.

Last but not least are pets if you have any. They are the unconditional source of love and affection. No matter what you are going through in life and who have left you, pets will love you all the same. They do add a liability of as much of child, being dependent for food and comfort. But they return 10 times towards our general happiness and wellbeing.

Lastly, I want to add is like any other relation, the family also needs to be valued and nurtured. Although the family will forgive easily and will never hurt you. Yet it’s not wise to hurt or hate them if they fall short of expectations. It’s also our responsibility to love them unconditionally as we expect to be loved by them.

While Home is the base of happiness tower, Family is the iron and cement that holds it together. Will discuss managing the factors of happiness to help maintain a degree of happiness in upcoming posts.

Thanks for reading. Please share your views in comments.

Stay happy, stay tuned !!

CH 6

CH 8

Ch 04 THE ‘SOCIAL’ (un)HAPPINESS PART 1 : JOB

Our social life ranges from the neighbourhood to relatives to the workplace to friends on the physical level and social media and chat groups on the virtual level. Our social existence is our identity by which we are known to everyone. We are under constant pressure to maintain a decent social reputation. In the process, we tend to find more stress than happiness.

As a fact, a large majority of people trying to rediscover their lost happiness, are the adult working class with a JOB of some nature. The job is one of the main components of the social factor. Blessed are those whose passion is their day-work, or so they say. Content are those who have adapted to love their job. And remaining are just dragging along in their unfulfilling careers. Either way, the job is the means of earning a livelihood and consumes the major part of our day.

Therefore job satisfaction contributes significantly towards of status of happiness. Job satisfaction on basic level comes from the interest in the activities we perform, the respect we earn from our colleagues and the money we make at the end of the month.

When we are passionate about our work, other factors tend to take a back seat. Even if the pay is moderate or we don’t get as much time off as others, it’s still a happy state to work on what we love. Even this can turn toxic when we are so much consumed in the work that we begin to ignore everything else in life. If our health or family suffers due to over-indulgence in the JOB front, the satisfaction is ruined sooner or later. A balance is always required to keep us and people other around us happy.

For those of us who are less than passionate for the JOB we do, there is always some level of stress that burns the happiness on a daily basis. Changing the job, or profile significantly is not easily a feasible option for most of us. Even with a decent paycheck, we find our self tangled in loops of financial commitments and lifestyle expenses.

What could be helpful, is to discover your interests within the boring platter of profiles that your current JOB offers. Find interesting and efficient ways to perform the same work. Reach the workplace on time and more importantly leave on time. Having the work-life balance is the key to improve satisfaction, with the quality of life. Use spare time to engage in something more fulfilling. I write in my spare time and it helps me express and feel happy.

In Indian culture work and duty is given importance on a religious level. We are expected to be “Karamveer” meaning completely dedicated and devoted towards commitment and duty. I used to wonder, what good is that, if we don’t even like the job at hand. Well, I see the point now, as it gives a sense of satisfaction when we have lived up to the expectations that our culture demands, even when we didn’t quite like our job, we did it in the best way. It’s kind of ‘sacrifice’ one makes for the ‘greater good’. We can feel good about it and of course, get paid in the process.

I believe, here if we stop hating the job and begin to appreciate it. For the fact that it beings food on our table, gets the rents and EMI paid, and make us useful to the world in some way. We can definitely be less stressed and happier.

Happy working and stay dutiful.

Ch 03

Ch 05