Is there any doubt that people are searching for happiness in the wrong places?
Reaching a fulfilled lifestyle is much more than just a beautiful home or modern car. It’s about connecting with yourself on more than just a conscious level.
Buddhist Monks have obviously figured this out because instead of chasing material value they look within.
The following tips come from Monks who know what a fulfilled life entails.
1. Never stop trying
The worst thing technology has taught us is to be lazy.
According to a Monk it is crucial to try several times before giving up. It is also important to try different approaches. When you have reached the point where nothing works then make peace and move on, but giving up after only trying once usually leads to disappointment.
Creating any practice or new habit requires patience and a “never stop trying” attitude.
2. All the answers come from within
A fundamental principle for Monks is to use intuition.
In order to deal with problems the world throws at you, you need to use your sixth sense. Buddhism students are only given a small amount of information from which they have to solve big problems. This is part of their preparation for facing the world.
In essence the universe will open the door, but you need to walk through it without losing sight or becoming disappointed when the answer isn’t clear from the start is a discipline we must try to master.
All the answers reside within us; we just need to look in the right places and trust ourselves.
3. Failure equals growth
This is a lesson very few people seem to understand. Making a mistake or failing at something tends to make us focus on the worst.
You should keep in mind that there are always two sides to a coin. Failures and mistakes are a learning process and a precious one at that. Someone can teach you a valuable lesson, but unless you actually go through it yourself it won’t hold as much value.
Taking chances are such a critical part of a fulfilled life and yet we are scared to take part in the learning process.
Monks know there are two sides to everything in life: with good must come bad just like with growth must come failure and a lot of this comes down to one’s perspective.
4. Know the power of impermanence
Impermanence is one of the most important buddhist teachings and one that must be fully understood and accepted in order to fully understand life.
NOTHING IS PERMANENT and the sooner you understand what this really means and accept this, you will be able to live a life filled with less expectation from anything and anyone.
The only thing that is constant is change itself and when you can learn to embrace change, beautiful things begin to shift in our lives.
5. Learn the art of patience
For some people patience is the hardest thing to achieve. Notice how these people become angry and agitated quite quickly?
There is a time and place for everything. Time is man-made and should never cause you frustration. Patience is definitely a virtue and the moment you are capable of controlling it, you are well on your way to living a more fulfilled life.
6. Forget about what other people think
Society has a way of programming our egos. We are constantly aware of what other people might be thinking or saying about us.
Feeding the ego is by no means healthy and even though we think it results in happiness, we are greatly mistaken. Keeping your ego happy doesn’t mean that you are happy.
The Monks suggest that you detach from your ego, this is what will allow you to grow spiritually.
You need to focus on what you think and feel instead of those around you and when you are able to do this, you will be more in tune with your true self.
7. Fight the enemy within
Just as the answers reside within ourselves, so does our biggest enemy.
You might think your biggest enemy is your boss or the bully at school, but it’s not. You are the one that gives power to your fears and insecurities.
Before you can accomplish anything you need to tackle the enemy that empowers the elements keeping you from happiness. In other words, overcome your internal fears.
8. Happiness Starts from within
It will be cynical to assume that happiness is only based on the spiritual side of life.
Family and friends, music, books, hobbies, all of these form part of your journey. However, you cannot enjoy anything if you are not happy internally.
Once you reach happiness from within it will manifest outside in the people and things that make life worth living.
This is also why meditation is such a significant practice for Monks because it helps to cultivate peace from the inside out, and when you become more in touch with your true self, the happier you will feel.
9. Be present
We hear this one all of the time but really, stop and think about how present you are right in this moment.
Monks are so aware of being present in this moment as it is the only moment we can be sure of.
If we learn to do our best, act our best, feel our best and just be for this moment ONLY, then we will be able to live a much more fulfilled quality of life as Monks do.
Meditation is invaluable for anyone who is finding it difficult to practice staying present.
10. Know what is more valuable than material possessions
This is a HUGE one that we all know and have heard many times I am sure but living in the 21st century in a world dominated by media influences, it can be difficult to not get drawn in to material things.
Something I like to do is have a mini version of a vision board that keeps me grounded, either on my phone or at home (or both) . So, I guess you could call it a “grounding board” 🙂
You can fill this board with pictures of people less fortunate than yourself, children who have no food or clean water, animals that are being treated poorly, a picture of your grandparents, family, your favourite yoga balance, words that express feelings like love, compassion, family, friends – things that mean a lot to you.
ALL of these things I have listed above keep me grounded in times where I get carried away with material things and looking at a picture of my ‘grounding board’ helps to pull me back to what is really important in life.
It is natural to find happiness and fulfilment in the world outside, but it doesn’t mean you should neglect internal happiness.
Those who find peace inside their mind usually don’t care much for materialistic objects or public opinions. They are happy and fulfilled.
Nevertheless, everyone is different and by following the above-mentioned advice you can dramatically increase the happiness in your life.
“Peace comes from within. Do not seek it without.”- Buddha