Friday, October 19, 2012

What Does It Take To Be Happy?

Not everyone wants to be happy.
Some want to have a variety of feelings for contrast.
Some would rather be peaceful or just content.
Some prefer to be caring, concerned or compassionate.

You can have the experience you choose.
Simply be clear about the feelings you prefer.
If you prefer drama, give yourself permission.
If you prefer enjoyment, allow yourself to enjoy.

The household in which we are raised teaches us what is the norm.
The parents and caregivers we have demonstrate what and when and how to feel.
The experiences we learn from, ie TV, video games, playmates and school, show us what is normal.
The choice is ours as we become adult and can undo what is nor preferred and choose again.

For men, the “safe” emotion other than simply neutrality is “anger”.
When men feel hurt, scared, guilt and resentment, they seem to either withdraw or get angry.
When men have uncomfortable and upsetting feelings, they usually need to protect themselves.
The least vulnerable emotion and most prevalent among men is to be angry.

When anger is not acceptable, then men tend to withdraw.
They must take care of their wounds by being alone.
They often distract themselves to heal or “simmer down”.
They sometimes reflect, contemplate or pray.

If bothered, challenged, questioned or probed when upset, men tend to react.
Their reactions are designed to say “Stay away” or “Leave me alone.”
Men want to find their own neutral, centered and balanced place.
They usually prefer not to talk about their emotional reaction.

When asked, cajoled or demanded to talk about the upset, they need to recreate the feelings.
When made to feel wrong about wanting to just go on with life, they often feel attacked and blamed.
When they are pushed to express, women need to understand it will usually be anger.
Men prefer to heal themselves emotionally and to find a balance where no one hurts, including themselves.

When we are trying to be helpful, we may inadvertently be hurtful.
Everyone needs time and space to establish inner peace.
All people need to protect themselves from emotional, mental and physical attack.
When we recognize everyone is doing their best as finding a way to be happy, we let them be.

Yes, there are times when talking and listening work to help with healing and peace.
To listen to someone requires that we be quiet and neutral inside and really hear them.
To really listen we must not probe or interrogate and not defend or make wrong.
When our intention is to return to love and peace, we honor the individual’s way to find inner peace.

Make sure you know what you want and then communicate it to those around you.
Some possibilities:
“I want to be alone right Now.” 
“When you have some time, I need to share.”
“Will you simply listen with no comment, so I can get this out?”
“I will ask for feedback if and when I need it.”
”My upset is not about you, so please don’t take it personally.”
“I just need some time to clear my feelings.”

The work in all relationships is to listen with an quiet mind and open heart.
The work is to not prejudge any situation and to respond with kindness.
The work is to care for others as much as for yourself.
The work is to care for yourself as much as for others.

Choose what works for you and for the other.
Choose what is fair and caring and shares the highest Truth.
Choose what is good and kind and beneficial to all.
Choose what is loving and leaves you happy and at peace.

Loving you,  
Betty Lue

Recommendations for All Relationships 
With mates, partners, friends, children, co-workers, etc.

Keep your agreements faithfully.
(Communicate changes honestly and immediately.)

Give more than you expect to receive. 
Do more than your “fair” share.

Receive everything with open appreciation.
Express your thanks sincerely and take nothing for granted.

Live your own life in integrity and on purpose.
Clarify, communicate and live your mission, your path, your principles and values.  

Be responsible for yourself, your work and live your life impeccably. 
Don’t expect others to pick up after you or take care of you.

Stop using, blame, criticism or guilt to control or manipulate.
Stop making demands, threats or using neediness to get your way.

Communicate effectively and respectfully.
Request a time and place and tone of voice that works for both parties.

Be your best self in all circumstances.
Focus always on teaching by example. (and apologize immediately when you forget or neglect.)

Use your time together wisely.
Focus on meaningful, positive and inspiring conversation and activities.

Spend time, money, energy and resources only on what you value and want to increase.
Waste nothing in your relationship.  No arguing, pettiness, emotional dumping or negativity.

There are many more agreements which I encourage you and your partner to write together.
I encourage all parties to take time to re-evaluate your agreements monthly or on a regular basis.

As circumstances change, there is a need to re-commit to what works for all participants.
Families need to meet to look at the specific needs of each individual to be at their best.
Couples need to ensure that the relationship is “serving all parties.
Business partners need to return to their original agreement and consider changing roles as needed.

Life requires that we be in relationship.
With respect for ourselves and each other there is open communication.
With responsibility for the quality of our relationships, there is a willingness to seek what works for all.
With cooperation there is encouragement to listen for ways to serve the needs of everyone.
When everyone WINS, the relationships are harmonious, peaceful and enjoyable.

Blessings to us all in our willingness to continue to explore and find better ways of relating,  
Betty Lue