Go With Your Gut: 3 Myths to Happiness

Written By | General | February 13th, 2012 | 12 Comments »

be happy

Just as the natural physical state is health and vitality, the natural emotional state is peace and happiness.¬† Whenever you experience a deviation from peace of mind and happiness, it’s an indication that there is something amiss.¬† Something is wrong with what you are thinking, doing or saying.¬† You’re an incredibly complex organism and your feelings of ease and dis-ease, happiness and unhappiness, can be triggered by a myriad of factors.¬† But the bottom line is that your feeling of inner happiness is the very best indicator you could ever have to tell you what you should be doing more of and what you should be doing less of.

Unhappiness is to your life as pain is to your body.¬† It’s sent as a messenger to tell you that what you’re doing is wrong for you.¬† And it’s also sent to tell you that you’re on the right track.

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There are many reasons why people don’t listen more closely to their feelings and especially, why many people are reluctant to use their own happiness as the standard by which to judge the events in their lives.¬† I’ve studied this subject for many years and I think that there are three major myths about happiness that each of us has to some degree.

The 3 Myths About Happiness

The first myth about happiness is that it’s not legitimate or correct for you to put your happiness ahead of everyone else.¬† Throughout my life, I’ve met people who’ve been very adamant about stating that happiness is something that you may or may not get from life, but it’s not a goal or objective by itself.¬† These people say that it’s more important to make other people happy than to make yourself happy.

Of course, this is nonsense.¬† Human beings are happiness-tropic organisms.¬† Everything we do in life is oriented toward maintaining and increasing our level of happiness.¬† We are psychologically constructed so that it’s impossible for us to be any other way without making ourselves mentally and emotionally ill.¬† The fact is that you cannot give away to anyone else what you don’t have for yourself.¬† Just as you cannot give money to the poor if you don’t have any, you can’t make someone else happy if you are yourself miserable.¬† The very best way to assure the happiness of others is to be happy yourself and then to share it with them.

The second myth, closely tied to the first myth that happiness is not a legitimate aim, is the admonition that we’re here to serve others rather than ourselves.¬† There are many poems and essays that repeat this main theme.¬† They say that we’ve justified our life on this earth and we’ve made some other person happy on the way through.¬† This is partially true and partially false.¬† It’s partially true in that one of the most important things in life we do is to serve other people in some way.¬† It’s through service to others that we achieve a sense of meaning and purpose in life.¬† It’s only when we loose ourselves in doing something that we feel benefits someone more than ourselves that¬† we experience transcendence, that we feel ourselves rising above the tedium of day-to-day activity.¬† To paraphrase Robert Louis Stevenson, “Everybody makes their living by serving someone.”¬† However, the key is to serve with joy and happiness.¬† The answer to this myth is that, yes, we’re here to serve others, but we’re also here to achieve our own joy, satisfaction and fulfillment as a result.¬† One of the requirements of high self esteem and confidence is the feeling we are making a contribution to the world that we are living in, that we are putting in more than we are taking out.¬† So we serve others in order to be happier than we would be if we were not.

The third myth about happiness is that someone else’s definition of happiness is valid for you.¬† Often, we feel a little uneasy if we’re not happy doing something that someone else thinks we should be happy at.¬† Many people allow their parents to influence their choices of career and find themselves miserable as a result.¬† They want to please their parents, they want to make them happy, but they’re unable to experience any joy doing what they’re doing.

The fact is that life, happiness, is very much like a smorgasbord.  If 100 people went to a smorgasbord and each put food on their plates in the quantity and mix that each felt would be most pleasing to himself or herself, every single plate would be different.  Even a husband and wife would go up to a smorgasbord and come back with plates that look completely different.  Happiness is the same thing.  It is composed of a great variety of ingredients, physical, mental, emotional and spiritual.  Each person requires a particular combination of these ingredients in order to feel the very best about himself, or herself and life.

Thank you for reading this post.  I hope you found you enjoyed it and found it helpful.  Please share with your family and friends or leave a comment.

About Brian Tracy – Brian Tracy is recognized as the top sales training and personal success authority in the world today. He has authored more than 60 books and has produced more than 500 audio and video learning programs on sales, management, business success and personal development, including worldwide bestseller The Psychology of Achievement. Brian’s goal is to help you achieve your personal and business goals faster and easier than you ever imagined. You can follow him on google+, facebook, and twitter.


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  2. Chibuike says on September 29, 2012 at 2:54 pm:

    Tracy!! … You Are Really A Self-actualize Person!… You Were Devinely Sent On Earth For A Particular Mission Which I Believe You Are Gettin It To The Fulfilment, On Your Daily Activities Of Inspirations To The World..

  3. Melanie Kovero says on September 29, 2012 at 1:14 pm:

    Hello Brian, wise & wonderful advice. 2 years ago at a networking group a very young, aged 22, very successful entrepreneur, Karen, told me you had inspired her success. Building up her business http://karoracosmetics.com/she learnt success from listening to your motivational tapes as she drove around Ireland to visit prospect. She shared this secret with me and others. Your inspiration is creating a lot of happiness & success. Thankyou.

  4. Sam says on February 22, 2012 at 10:46 pm:

    Hi Brian,
    Your advice is always top notch, and I’ve followed you for about a year (having been impressed by your short youtube videos). However, here I disagree with you.
    The human condition is not that of “natural emotional peace and happiness”… Our experiences are far more complex, rich, beautiful, and disturbing than just a sense of numbing and pervasive “happiness.” We all know that. In fact, I’m pretty sure that given your success you know that as well.
    Academic psychology generally defines happiness as the congruency between our reality and our expectations. Being a driven and ambitious person, I have to admit that I’m often not satisfied with where I am, and thus, I’m not always “happy”. That’s not to say I’m not grateful for my achievements, health, and very existence, it is just that I want to improve on what I have.
    Anyways, I think it’s misleading (although well intentioned) to tell people that the natural state of being is happiness… It’s normal, if not healthy, to feel a wide range of emotions throughout life… Existence is rich and complex, and I wouldn’t trade that for a singular emotional state.

  5. subhashini says on February 20, 2012 at 2:05 am:

    After studying this i decided to be happy always and by that i will make others too happy.

  6. Mark Logue says on February 15, 2012 at 10:02 am:

    Excellent article. It is well written and consicely stated.

  7. Lanre says on February 14, 2012 at 8:16 pm:

    “You can’t give what you don’t have” and that’s completely true. Many of us don’t attain the state of happiness because we’re ignorant of the fact that we have all it takes to make us happy. We all launch into the world with the aim of serving others and making them happy when sometimes, self should come first.

    We were created with every single thing we need to attain fulfilment but due to external pressures, we go out looking for these exact same things. Discovering your talent is the greatest gift you can ever receive and using it as a channel of blessing to others is one of the best ways to stay happy and spread the happiness.
    Thanks for this post Mr Tracy.

  8. please delete me after reading says on February 14, 2012 at 11:23 am:

    Brian, I love you, but please stop typing two spaces between sentences.

  9. Kelx says on February 14, 2012 at 10:02 am:

    This is write-up is soul opening.

  10. Michael says on February 14, 2012 at 8:36 am:

    I have now known the secret of a successful leaders. My right and proprities first. Thank you mr tracy.

  11. kelly says on February 14, 2012 at 8:25 am:

    Amazingly true

  12. Musa says on February 14, 2012 at 5:15 am:

    I see now that service someone else at my expense is not the correct way to go about it.

    I have first find my passion and then share it with others, that way I maintain a win-win scenario.

    Thank you Mr. Tracy.



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