Habit of Happiness 2 – Celebration

From our e-book “Filling our Life with Celebration”

CelebrationSome of us look forward to an early retirement. We fantasize about making enough money so that we can quit our jobs and spend the rest of our lives on our favourite activities. That is because we do not view our work as our occupation, that is, something that occupies our mind. Our monkey-mind is so erratic that if we do not work, we will struggle to find activities to distract ourselves. For most of us, work is necessary; not just to earn money.

Celebration is an expression of gratitude. To bring more joy into our life, we need to celebrate more. At work, whenever we complete a task, even a small one, we should celebrate. We can sing to ourselves and if no one is looking, even dance. We could take a walk to the pantry and make ourselves a drink or buy ourselves a good lunch. Anything that brings a sense of satisfaction and joy will be a form of celebration.

Asians will probably feel guilty to do this because of the conditioning to work hard. Asians are conditioned to  think that hard work is important for success and one is either hardworking or lazy. The problem is that hard work cannot be measured objectively. Some may not feel that they have worked hard unless they have put in 12 hours of work a day.

Our work makes our holidays special because it becomes a reward to us. If we do not work, one day is the same as another. When we are on a holiday it is helpful to be like a child again. When we were young, we were taught not to waste our time. This conditioning makes it difficult for us to sit back and relax while holidaying. We need to let go of this conditioning and remind ourselves that we can do anything we like as our reward. There is no need to be ‘productive’ all the time.

We also need to practice the habit of celebration at home. Whenever our loved ones accomplish something, celebrate. Look for every opportunity to celebrate. We do not need to spend money to celebrate. Children celebrate all the time and their activities are free. We just need to think like a child again.

By celebrating, we make the conscious effort to draw positive thoughts into our minds. The media tends to focus on negative events because somehow negative events tend to attract more attention. This in turn draws more negative thoughts in our minds until it has become an ingrained habit within us. Positive thoughts become rare events. We need to shift gears and focus our minds on positive thoughts and there is no better way to do this than celebrating. We cannot force our minds to think positively but we can encourage our minds to do so.

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