The Art Of Happiness

Happiness, like beauty, is in the eye of the beholder. You alone have the ability to determine your own happiness. Happiness may sound very abstract to some, but it really boils down to just three key areas. These include being appreciative of who you are, being passionate about life and doing what you love.

I'm honoured to be the keynote speaker for the Crohn's and Colitis Society of Singapore. A strong advocate of community support for inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), this event was put together by the friendly guys from Janssen, a subsidiary company of Johnson & Johnson.

As a public speaker, it is simply remarkable to be able to give back to the community in my humble ways. Today, I chose to dig deep within myself and speak on this topic titled "The Art of Happiness".

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100% a true reflection of my own life story, my struggles and my transformation, the talk was as poignant as it was uplifting. Drawing from my own experiences of how I overcame numerous obstacles in my life before succeeding on my own terms, I can truly understand how the audience felt.

Certain common themes resonate - pain, loss, depression & betrayal. But life is really what we make out of it. For those of you who know me personally or who have read my book 'Branded For Success', you will know I started from nothing to something. And my obstacles included coming to terms with the death of my father, seeking inner peace in Nepal, quitting my job in search of true happiness, getting cheated by my business partner in my first venture and transforming myself.

There’s really no need to compare ourselves with others. Happiness means different things to different people. To some, happiness equates to living in big houses, driving big cars and wearing branded clothes. To others, happiness simply means being appreciative of what you already have. If we stop comparing ourselves with others, we will also remove the unnecessary stresses in life. The millionaire living in the big house may appear happy to us but deep down inside he is not. He is afraid of inviting thieves into his house and fears for his life…with bodyguards following him closely. Is this true happiness or manufactured happiness? You decide.
 
Because we start with the state of feeling content, anything else that comes along is a bonus, a pleasant surprise. If we think this way, happiness is so within our reach. It’s like children having hours of fun after discovering crayons that they can doodle with. That’s also the secret behind why Bhutan is constantly ranked among the world’s happiest country because the people are simply content with life.

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I’ll let you in on a piece of happiness nugget which I use. Instead of waiting for others to reward or praise me, I take proactive action to celebrate every little success along the way. Simple things in life make me happy. It can be simple as giving myself a pat on the back. Or spending time with my family, doing my sitting practice or taking a walk around my neighbourhood. I don't need a big house, a fast car or a fat bank account.

If there's a secret I want to share, it's this. When we we observe happy people, they always have a smile on their face. And their footsteps are always lighter. And they look younger! Now who does not want to look younger? More importantly, it takes only 17 muscles to smile as compared to 43 muscles to frown? I know this is a new discovery for many of you. 

The art of happiness resides in all of us. We just have to let it inundate our entire body so we can feel the empowering source from within. Start your own happiness project today!

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