I hate to write in generalizations, but I think it is safe to say that everyone desires to be happy. This thought led me into thinking that it might be valuable to discover why one is unhappy in the first place.
You may have heard it said, “That all the happiness you’ll ever find lies within you.” Unfortunately, what has not been so explicitly stated is how to find this elusive happiness that resides within us.
I examined this happy/unhappy situation and saw that a mistake has been made about happiness lying within you. Here is what should have been said: “All the unhappiness you’ll ever find lies within you.”
Let me explain.
To be happy, you must discover first what is making you unhappy. Then, and only then, can you have a chance of finding a state of happiness that is more lasting. Without discovering what is creating unhappiness will only allow you to acquire transitory happiness—and anyone can experience a brief period of happiness.
But first, if you really want to understand the cause of unhappiness, you will have to understand more about values and basic human nature.
Here is what you need to understand: THEY ARE THE SAME THING.
Values are defined as standards of behavior; qualities used as a method to attain an end or goal.
Dr. Alfred Barrios discovered the 24 characteristics of geniuses. (The link is to a free download of the list of 24 genius characteristics and a description of each, if you want to look them over.) Those genius characteristics are a standard of behavior. Therefore, they are values.
Our founder, Bob Duggan, found that the original meaning of genius meant innate, inborn, or inherent nature. So even though it may seem to you that you don’t have some of these 24 genius characteristics, the fact is that those inherent genius characteristics are inside of you and can be fully developed.
Since they are inherent abilities, the 24 characteristics are not only values, they are also basic human nature.
And being basic human nature, deep down a person knows innately that they are capable of this genius standard of behavior. They may need a little help developing it, but they know it can be developed.
Now ask yourself this question: How does a person feel when they violate or act contrary to their own human nature? Correctamundo. Unhappy.
Pick any of the 24 characteristics. Let’s take the characteristic of Honesty. If you are dishonest with someone do you feel good or bad? Take the characteristic of Outgoingness. If you make someone feel badly about themselves, you aren’t going to add to your own happiness.
Take Patience. If you are impatient with your own child and upset them so they start crying it is not going to make you feel like anything but an idiot. (This is something in my past that I have been guilty of myself and regret to this.)
The truth is, we cause our own unhappiness by doing things that go against our own human basic nature. The only people who aren’t unhappy when they do something against their own human nature are psychopaths and sociopaths.
And hopefully, that isn’t you or me. The rest of us feel badly when we violate this genius standard of behavior.
Go down the list of the 24 innate genius characteristics. They are human values. They are part of your own basic human nature. Look at those times in your life where you did something contrary to that standard of behavior, and you will probably find disappointment in yourself or unhappiness.
Now that you can see where unhappiness comes from, what can you do about it?
The first thing you can do is familiarize yourself with the 24 genius characteristics and practice them daily and work at not violating that standard of behavior.
Optionally, you can look over your own life and make a list of every time where you went against these values. And where possible, apologize to any other person you may have hurt. If the only person you hurt was yourself, then recognize it, and forgive yourself.
Then move on. Don’t dwell on your mistakes, learn from them. (That’s part of genius characteristics #5 Honesty and #9 Willingness to Take Chances.)
Focus on the good news that you can resurrect, revitalize, and develop these 24 genius characteristics. Because restoring these characteristics themselves actually creates more happiness within you.
Developing these genius traits will make poor behavior less likely in the future, and guard against creating your own unhappiness. I hope this helps you. Go ahead and try it and see if it works for you. I’m betting it will.
Until next time, be a genius and be happy.