Friday, June 19, 2015

More Highs Than Lows

The past ten years of my life have been rewarding and challenging, which in my mind is just the right combination for happiness. I can't sit here and tell you that every moment has been incredible because that's just not true. Life can be messy. It can be difficult and all of us...know matter our place in life, will always experience great highs and great lows. No matter what you do, you just can't stop the fact that there will be hard times. Hard times don't feel great. They definitely don't feel like in the moment that they will give you sage advice and experience, but they will. Hard times can harden you or they can grow you. However, its important to know that your ratio of highs and lows don't have to consistent heavily of lows. A life filled with lots of lows is many times a product of poor choices. Or it could be the lack of action or doing nothing to challenge yourself that leads to more lows for you. A life of inaction and poor choices always leads to a lot of lows.

So, how can you have more highs than lows? Check out a few points of advice below that will help you have more highs than lows in your life:

1. Challenge Yourself - A life with intermittent challenges will push you in positive directions you won't expect. True growth is about being slightly uncomfortable from time to time. 

2. Be Nice to Others - Its simple, but so true. Being nice to everyone you meet and spreading goodness always gives you a better chance at having more highs than lows in life. People who demean, degrade and act rudely towards others should never wonder why they always are perceived negatively. If you plant something negative you will blossom something negative. If you plant something positive you will blossom something positive. Whatever you grow in your life, positive or negative, it will become that. 

3. Take Vacations - While vacations can be expensive, you can't take your money with you. Creating memorable experiences in new places with people you love and care about goes a long way towards creating regular happy moments. You can't believe the amazing positive change in perspective you receive from experiencing different customs and activities on vacation. Plus, if you do it right, its also a good way to just turn your brain off and let your mind and body truly relax.

4. Look at the Big Picture - Look at your life as a whole and not just what's in front of you. Its so easy to take what happened on one day and then over dramatize it and blow it up. Ask yourself how your actions create consequences not just for today, but for years down the road.

5. Don't Make Emotional Decisions - One of the best classes I took in my undergrad and graduate studies was Philosophy. My favorite content in the class was learning how to base decisions on factual information and not on volatile, knee jerk emotions. Knee jerk emotional reactions are always a recipe for bad decision making. The most successful people I know in my life are excellent at stepping back from situations, analyzing them and then coming up with thoughtful responses. This equals good decisions which will certainly give you more highs than lows in life.

My hope is that you are living or are beginning to live a life full of fulfillment and integrity. I hope you experience tremendous highs associated with smart decision making. Its available to everyone. You just have to be willing to be open to it.

Until next time...

Dr. D
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