Personal Development


What is happiness?

The best definition for Happiness that I can find is:

“Happiness is a mental or emotional state of well-being characterised by positive or pleasant emotions ranging from contentment to intense joy.”

That being said, there are many aspects of happiness – all must be addressed. Happiness is the best indicator of a low stave in our life. The water barrel shown cannot hold any water past the level of the lowest stave. Look for things that we are unhappy about and address them first, then our barrel can hold more water.


There is little point in working on our strengths when it is our weaknesses that are pulling us down.
We cannot improve our life until we increase the height of the lowest stave past the height of the second lowest. Our barrel can then hold more water.

The simplest and most obvious aspects of happiness are:

  • Relationships – How you feel about other people, places and things
  • Self Esteem – How you feel about yourself
  • Self Actualisation – How you feel about your achievements
  • Spiritual Growth – How you feel about your God – the Universal all or whatever you conceive Him to be.


How I feel about other people, places and things.

No man is an island. Relationships define our place in the world – we relate to all things outside of ourselves in some way or other. If we are uncomfortable with someone or something then our happiness is marred and our barrel is broken.

Self Esteem

How I feel about myself

This one is very important – If we are not happy about any part of our self then we are totally limited. We MUST deal with this one immediately. This is the open bung in the bottom of the barrel.

Self worth is one of the key factors of physical, mental and spiritual health – If we have a low opinion of our self, then those selves cannot be truly healthy – there is room for improvement.

Self Actualisation

How I feel about my achievements

Mankind is a funny creature, we are compulsive achievers – even if we see nothing to do. Achievement leads to contentment, but there is always more to do – this is a constant source of discontent. Lack of achievement is a basic that must be addressed as we cannot progress in our personal development until we address it.

Spiritual Growth

How I feel about God – whatever I conceive him, her or it to be.

Underneath all people is a basic and often unconscious desire to grow. This is seen by the fact that all cultures have a form of God – even if it is hidden deep inside.

I have spoken to many professing to be atheists who state that no God can exist. When pressed, they all admit to a feeling of “something inside” that leads them on. So the only difference between us then is just what we name this “something”. Some see it as the force of God in our lives, others see it as a basic desire to advance and develop our self.

I really do not care what you choose to call it – IT IS THERE! – that is good enough for me.

It is an incomplete part of ourselves that we must improve, indeed we are driven to do so.


Happiness is the gauge by which we measure our self against what could be – there will always be room for improvement – but it is a key indicator of progress and self development.

One Response to Happiness

  1. Loyal Butterfly May 25, 2014 at 12:04 pm #

    What if I feel great about myself – mostly – but can’t find hardly anyone else to match up with? To me, my “value” is purely relational. I have no purpose or meaning in myself. It is only when joining in life, with other people, that there is any point or worth.
    Sure, I can be happy as a clam, ecstatic even, just driving the car or shopping in the grocery store. This is a daily occurrence for me. But no one seems to want to join me in the rapture. No one else that I know (well, 3 people) seem to see life as being like light projecting through empty space, making a hologram out of pure nothing. And that we are nothing, and so everything. I describe it and people are perplexed.
    So, why are people not this happy? Who will go downtown with me and a boom box and dance in the middle of the city? Who wants to live with me and share the great adventure? Is this MY fault? “Be the change you wish to see in the world” but don’t get yourself locked up for being what we are meant to be?
    How do I represent this? I painted my toenails. I am happy.

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