Happiness is an inside job.
I believe that.
We have been blessed with free will, and it is this indeterminable free will with which we forge our destiny. We are responsible and decisive. We are the masters and mistresses of our own house. We have everything we need, if we finally choose to seek a way to get it.
Sometimes though, on occasion, once in a while, or a lot, there comes a time, when we need a little help, to point us in the right direction.
Besides a divine intervention, which most people pray and cling to like lottery numbers, we need a little self-help. We need support that transforms our lives and ultimately makes the world a better plane of existence.
My thoughts this morning, turn to a very keen observation I heard on the radio last week, which marvelled at the size of the self-help sections in our bookstores and libraries, yet the complete absence of the help-others section.
The self-help section has many books filled with great wisdom, but it is also cluttered with some contrived universal methods; a suspicious way to profit a few rusty dimes.
Yet we don’t have a help-others section.
We assume that we already know how to help others, but we somehow don’t understand how to help ourselves.
It gets worse.
Some of us have come to believe that you simply cannot help others, until you have helped yourself.
In part, this is true, but it is very deceptive.
If you wait for a sunny day, for the day you quit smoking, when your relationship turns the corner, your kids go to college, your cold goes away, you lose some weight, or you get another job; you may find yourself looking at flowers from the other side of the garden.
I think helping others and helping yourself is the same thing.
The great motivational speaker Zig Ziglar believed that, ‘you can have everything you want in life, if you just help enough people get what they want’.
We are all connected.
I think deep inside all of us, we know we don’t have the means or the ability to truly thank and repay anyone for all the things we have been blessed with.
How do you repay your mother for her labour pains? How do you repay your father for the endless sleepless nights? How do you repay your grandmother for her hugs and kisses?
You help other people get what they want.
We really do need a help-others section.
Maybe I’ll start a new movement.
We need to start spreading this idea.
Forget how you feel. Forget what you have done wrong. Forget yourself, even for just a moment. Go out, and strike up a conversation with a perfect stranger.
Buy a coffee for someone. Hold open the door for them. Let them merge into your lane, without losing your mind.
Write a song. Write a poem.
Listen to their pain.
Make them laugh.
Seek out their hidden and rusty smile.
Carry their burden, if only for a little while.
Leave them a little better than when you found them.