The following post contains the notes I made while watching a T. Harv Eker seminar online called “The Shocking Truth About Happiness.” It’s like a Coles Notes version, but mine, so it’s Kim’s Notes! You can check out T. Harv Eker’s free trainings here.
The Shocking Truth About Happiness
The way we’re taught to be happy doesn’t work for long, and actually conditions us to be unhappy. We experience moments of happiness, but we’re mostly worried, anxious and empty.
Wu wei – non-action – is actually the truest path to happiness. You are already happy until YOU make yourself unhappy. Making yourself unhappy is almost always unintentional.
Quit focusing on becoming happy. Instead, focus on not being unhappy, or on letting yourself be happy.
Of course, life happens, and there will be traumas, deaths and other capital “R” REAL things that make you unhappy. This is normal.
However, an estimated (whopping) 95% of unhappiness is over the little things. Examples might include stewing over past negative situations, anxiety about what others think of you, etc.
7 Intertwined Precepts of Happiness
1. Happiness is natural.
You are a twin of yourself. There is your true or higher self, your spiritual essence, your natural self, or who you were born to be. There is also your false self, your conditioned self, or who you have learned to be through years of social conditioning.
Over the years, we consciously or unconsciously program ourselves to fit in. We believe that fitting in will help us avoid pain, and help us SURVIVE in the world.
Your body is all about survival. Your caveman instincts are strong.
Our minds are wired to operate out of fear, and protect us from danger. Our minds are constantly scanning for potential threats and problems.
Your conditioned mind is like a friend who is always a downer, or a hyper-protective mother. It looks for trouble, and often finds or invents it.
Remember your happy self is already there. Your true self exists within you at all times. Your conditioned self also exists inside you. Both parts are always there, but your true self is often drowned out by the chaotic clamoring of your conditioned self.
Happiness and peace are what is left over when everything else stops. Therefore, if you quiet your fear-based, conditioned mind, you will find peace and happiness.
“Happiness is natural. I am already happy until I make myself unhappy. I choose to be happy right now.”
2. Happiness is unconditional.
Don’t attach happiness to an external situation or target because external targets keep moving. You can’t control external situations, so it is never a good idea to base your happiness on external situations.
If (blank), then I’ll be happy thoughts will set you up for failure and unhappiness. If/then thinking is a trap because it postpones your happiness. “If” is a conditional statement, and conditions are always changing.
A lot of people think happiness is the result of something else. This is wrong. We cannot let your happiness be conditional and results-based.
Normal doesn’t mean it works. Normal means it’s popular, and that’s it.
The THINGS you feel you need to be happy are actually what’s making you unhappy. True happiness does not come from external situations, so drop your conditions. You create your own conditions and obstacles to happiness.
Your conditions predict your happiness level, so it is important to know what your conditions are. Common examples include: financial conditions, relationship-status conditions, living situation conditions, your personal appearance etc.
Just as you imposed these conditions on yourself, you can also let those thoughts or ideas go. It’s only a thought. Take a deep breath, and let it go. You need NOTHING to be fully happy right now!
“I release all conditions to my happiness. I choose to be happy right now.”
3. Happiness is independent.
Happiness is not about your inner state. Love, enjoyment and pleasure are NOT happiness. Therefore, happiness cannot be found in MORE love, enjoyment or pleasure.
Laughter is laughter, happiness is happiness, and they are not the same. This goes for any feeling. Only happiness is happiness.
Happiness is not more or better than other feelings. Happiness is only happiness. It is different and separate from other feelings.
We strive for beautiful inner states: more purpose, more peace, more fun, etc. This is not sustainable. Linking happiness with other states creates a happiness roller coaster. Do not link your happiness to conditions, either internal or external.
“Fun is fun, happy is happy, and they are not the same.”
(As with fun, repeat the above phrase with: pleasure, purpose, achievement, freedom, adventure, love, etc.)
Unlinking other emotions from happiness means your happiness is not limited from interior or exterior conditions. Happiness is independent. Stop struggling and trying to experience these other states, and you will exp your true self.
“Happiness is independent from any other state or feeling. I choose to be happy right now.”
4. Happiness can only exist right NOW.
Don’t postpone your happiness with obstacles and self-imposed conditions. The only real time, is NOW.
Tomorrow does not exist yet. Yesterday doesn’t exist anymore. The future and the past only exist in your imagination and memory. Each moment in the NOW, in the present, is the only time you can experience happiness.
If you want to be happy in the future, you have to be happy now. If you wait until some future time to be happy, it will not work because your brain will be formed and wired for unhappiness. Thoughts are habitual.
If you want to be happy later, practice being happy NOW. If you cannot find happiness now, you will never find happiness because it is always NOW. Practice does not make perfect; practice makes permanent.
“I can only be happy right now. If I want to be happy in the future, I have to practice being happy right now. I choose to be happy right now.”
5. Happiness must be clearly defined.
Everyone wants to be happy, but it seems everyone has a different idea about what happiness is. Happiness is subjective. Therefore, we must define happiness for ourselves. Whatever definition is given to happiness should be helpful, useful and doable.
Ex. – Contentment: Contentment is a state of peaceful happiness, and a satisfaction with what is.
We feel dissatisfied when we feel we need to do, or have, or be more. The search for happiness actually forces us to be unhappy because it comes from a place of fear rooted in a feeling of lack or scarcity. Searching for anything puts you in an anxious, fear state. The search for happiness is, therefore, self-defeating.
Some people believe that contentment and satisfaction lead to sloth and a lack of motivation. These same people believe that if you are satisfied with what you have, then you will never be or have more.
Dissatisfaction does not motivate, rather it demotivates. If we practice dissatisfaction, we will develop a habit of dissatisfaction.
There is a way to be satisfied and content AND still go for more and better (???) (I’m guessing this is the meat of the paid course because it was never explained in the free seminar/webinar.)
“I am willing to be satisfied, and fully content in this moment. I chose to be happy right now.”
6. Happiness is a choice.
There is often an internal battle between your fear-based, conditioned self, and your true, higher self. As I mentioned, you are a twin of yourself. You have two minds.
These two minds are basically the sum of your fear-based, negative thoughts, or your true-self-based positive thoughts. A common metaphor for your two minds is the one involving two wolves, fighting to control you.
One mind-wolf is a devouring wolf. You see the wolf’s greedy, slathering jaws. You are afraid. This wolf represents your fear-based, conditioned mind. The other mind-wolf is a companion and helper. It brings you joy, and saves you from loneliness. This wolf represents your higher, true self.
The law of attraction basically says that thoughts become things through a process of manifestation. Thoughts lead to feelings; feelings lead to actions; actions lead to results. All of our results are a product of our thoughts and feelings.
Feelings come from thoughts, so if you want to be happy, it is important to be aware of your thoughts. Dwelling on negative thought only increases your unhappiness.
You CAN learn to control your thoughts. Choose to entertain only good thoughts. If you do not manage your emotions and thoughts, they will manage you. You likely will not like the result, so learn to be aware of thoughts from your fear-based mind.
When you become aware of a thought from your fear-based mind, acknowledge the thought. You can say, “I see you,” in your mind. Thank your mind for its concern, and then reassure your mind that it’s all good. “Thank you for your concern. I appreciate you looking out for me, but we’re all good. I got this.” Return to the present. Bringing your awareness to my breathing is my favourite way to anchor myself in the present moment.
Practice noticing and releasing negative thoughts. Remember the steps: Acknowledge, Reassure, Return.
“Happiness is a choice. I choose to be happy. I choose to be happy right now.”
7. Happiness must be the priority.
You have to want to be happy more than anything else because maintaining your happiness when the shit hits the fan is really hard. This means learning to be happy even when you experience challenges. It also means conditioning your own mind to get out of the way of your happiness.
- It’s not okay for me to be happy when others are unhappy.
There is no global limit on happiness; it is unlimited. In fact, if you are miserable, you will infect others with your misery. Choose to be happy. It’s great to infect people with happiness.
- I don’t want to be happy all the time. I want to experience ALL the emotions.
Trust me, you will experience a range of emotions over the course of your lifetime. This spectrum of emotions will come to you naturally. You do not need to seek it out.
People voluntarily trade their happiness over just about anything. We trade our happiness for anger, righteousness, impatience, etc.
You picked the slowest line in the grocery store, again. Your boss is a jerk. What do they say about me behind my back?
Stop that shit. You’re borrowing trouble, and twisting yourself up, and it will not serve you.
Understand that it is not the situation that upset you. Rather, it is your thoughts about the situation that upset you. This gives you control, and it makes you responsible or your own happiness.
Choose your priority. You have the power to choose where you focus your thoughts. Ask yourself, do you want t be right, or do you want to be happy.
Choose to make happiness your priority. Choose to let it go for the sake of your happiness. Chose not to freak out when things aren’t going your way.
Remember that how you do anything is how you do everything. You have to value happiness to choose it when times are hard, and when you feel challenged.
“Happiness is my priority. I refuse to let anyone, anything, and especially my own mind, take me out of my happiness. I choose to be happy right now.”
True happiness already exists within you, in your higher-self. You do not find happiness; you connect with it.
Living in your true self consistently is hard because of your ego-mind. The negative, fear-voice inside your head wants to stop you. Fear is the enemy of happiness, and limits your happiness.
Be aware of your conditioned, fear-based, ego self. Don’t infect the people around you with misery and fear. You MUST learn to master your mind. You can recondition your mind for happiness.
[Now, the course pitch: happiness and success 2 in 1 course for happiness AND money, achievement, relationships, health. It seems weird because the huge success pitch seems to undermine the message a little: how do you reconcile desire and with happiness being contentment that does not seek more or better future conditions? The course add-ons seemed a little off-topic]
Interesting to not the way Harv presents the information:
- There are a ton of “micro-yesses” he elicits through phrases like, “Do you know what I mean.” Micro-yesses are designed to positively influence buying decisions.
- Manifest desires with ease, and without stress – people like easy fixes
- “It just came through me” channeling a great message directly from the universe, feel obliged to pass it on à all wrapped in a story and presented as a gift from God for lack of a better expression –> great way to elicit emotion
The secret to happiness has 2 parts
Maintaining inner peace & happiness regardless of the circumstance, includes a 4-step technique to return to the true self, provides you with an inner, emotional sanctuary for your mind when times get tough, you learn to dissipate negative energy and master your mind.
All pain comes from resistance to what is. That’s why acceptance is a mainstay of personal development.
Align with what the universe wants for you. The universe has a plan for you. Flow with it.
Stop struggling. Learn to let it all go so you can operate with ease and joy.
The secret to creating anything in your life, includes a 5-step template to manifest anything:
- Clarity – get clear on what you want
- Attachment to getting what you want often leads to disaster
- Attract good, and repel bad
- law of entrainment
- letting go of what does not serve – holding onto the old is often what prevents you from getting the new
That’s as much as I have for “The Shocking Truth About Happiness” a great free and informative online seminar by T. Harv Eker