No, I’m not talking about drugs. Alas! Well, actually, we could end up talking about drugs. We’ll see where the topic takes us.
I’m sure you’ve been told that happiness is a state of mind, and that you can alter your state. OOOoooOOooo, you say. Thank you, hippy shaman for the cliché. Now please, let me go back to my bad mood and my shitty outlook. Trust, I say that too. It sounds woo-woo, of course, but anything, really, is a state of mind. Your happiness, sadness, joy, fears, desires, all of ‘em are a state of mind. So it’s not only happiness you can control, but everything else, too.
And then your state of mind, as these woo-woo people tell you, whether it’s by your design or not, becomes your reality. Or maybe your state of mind is already your reality, and you can alter it by changing your state of mind. Yeah, I think that’s it.
So, I heard a quote on the Tim Ferriss show, spoken by Shay Carl. Shay, in his infinite wisdom as a woo-woo practitioner, told everyone to pay attention when they encountered a cliché because it was probably true. I believe it was actually in regards to eating healthy. Shay lost weight and told everyone to exercise and eat vegetables, and people told him to stop speaking in clichés. To tell him what really worked. Funny, but isn’t that how you’re supposed to lose weight?
So I guess I’m expanding it from there. When you hear a cliché, any cliché, pause and take notice. Think about what the cliché is saying. Odds are there is a lot of truth behind it. I mean, sayings only become clichés after they’ve been said a nauseating amount of times, which probably means they were true at some point. And although they may be caricatures of what they once were, much like how a truthful secret grows into a tall tale, clichés still hold some level of veracity.
Clichés of Happiness and Success
Ok, if you’re a reader of this blog, then you’re already rolling your eyes at the sight of “happiness and success.” A lot of what’s written here is directly related to both of those nouns. Did you know that, by the way? That both happiness and success are, in fact, nouns, meaning that according to the English language, it’s almost as if they’re something we can physically obtain.
And I actually agree. If, of course, we are to assume that we can also lose happiness and success as easily as we can lose our wallet or headphones. So then, if success and happiness are both a state of mind, and they are also nouns that can be attained, then achieving both happiness and success is a matter of attaining a specific state of mind.
Sounds cliché, right? Gotcha!
But clichés are true, remember? So then, let’s continue. It’s also cliché to say that happiness equals success, which means to say that if you’re happy, that is, if you’re able to attain, and then maintain, happiness, then you’re successful. So the pursuit of success, then, is the pursuit of happiness. So cliché!
Ok cool, so the logic continues. If we are to assume that “success,” in whatever capacity that means to you, is the point of life, then the point of life is really happiness, which we derive through actions of success. For example, say that you define success by the amount of quality relationships you have. So, if you spend a day with your mom, deepening your relationship with her, the action gives you happiness, because you’re achieving your definition of success.
And then, since the connections you make with people make you happy, you focus on increasing that happiness through more connections, and you maintain your state of happiness, which becomes – and stays – your number once concern.
A Successful State of Mind
Cool, so we’ve established that your state of mind is your reality and vice versa. We’ve also covered the fact that you have control over that reality, whether it be sad, mad, or happy. Further, we’ve touched on the idea that the point of life is to become successful, and success equals happiness, so really, the point of life is to be happy.
And finally, we decided that happiness is a state of mind and one that can be attained. So then, if you want to be happy, wouldn’t it make sense to focus on altering your state of mind in an attempt to achieve a state of happiness? Makes sense to me, although you might have to re-read that sentence a few times. I had to re-read it a few times even as I was typing it. Sorry.
Ok then, if we are to believe that the number one goal in life is to achieve success through happiness, how do we actively alter our state of mind so we become happy, and then work to maintain that happiness? Ready for another cliché?
Choose to be happy.
Gross! I threw up a little in my mouth. Why don’t you tell me something that I can actually work with, am I right? Well, you can work with this cliché, I promise you, because there’s a lot of truth.
Think about it this way: Happiness is a noun, it’s attainable, and its a state of mind, which means that it’s inside your head the whole time. You already own happiness just like you own a car or a dresser. All you need to do is uncover it.
And just like a car, it needs to be serviced and kept after. But unlike most cars, it can also appreciate in value. Meaning, that when you realize happiness is within you the whole time, and understand, through your definition of success, how to attain it, the more you feed it with other successful acts, the happier you actually become.
Happiness equals success, and it is a choice. You can be as successful as you want, right now. You can also be as happy as you want, in this exact moment. All you need to do is work on thinking happy; finding the joy in the little things, in the every day; marveling at the trajectory of your life and the amazing things you’ve done along the way; wonder at the infinite possibilities of your bright future.
And then you’ll be successful. And then you’ll live a life of value. Crazy that it all started with a cliché.
Evan Tarver is an author, nonfiction writer and editor, screenwriter, and small business owner with a background in finance and technology. Overall, the content he creates is meant to shift the way people think and encourage them to act. Some ideas explore the social environment on the macro level, some ideas explore the transformative power of personal growth on the micro-level, while most fall somewhere in between.