Develop a Guiding Philosophy for Happiness

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Groundedness is one of the most important components of a satisfied life. Being grounded means having a guiding philosophy - a foundation of personal integrity that outside influences cannot disturb.

Our philosophy contains our values, spiritual faith, personal boundaries, and the causes we support. It reflects our core beliefs about who we are and how we conduct our lives.

The media bombards us with promises of quick success and glamorous lives. People naturally want happier, more successful lives. Many tools are indeed helpful toward that end. Yet simply having certain "things" is not the reason that we achieve happiness and success.

Promises based on possessions and fads do not address one of the root causes of dissatisfaction; that is, lack of groundedness. Groundedness adds consistency to our lives - a mental compass to guide our actions and decisions.

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow wrote: "Build today, then strong and sure,
With a firm and ample base;
And ascending and secure,
Shall tomorrow find its place." Without Longfellow's "firm and ample base", we fly from promise to promise. We do not stay with one idea - regardless how helpful - long enough to realize the peace and love we actually seek. We keep changing channels, not following one story line to completion.

Many have said, "If you don't stand for something, you'll fall for anything." Our guiding philosophy defines what we stand for. It keeps us from tossing to and fro with every new situation and idea. Our guiding philosophy is the supporting foundation beneath an authentically happy life.

Ask yourself these five questions:

1. What are the major ideas, values, and causes that contribute to my philosophy of living?

2. What are the boundaries that shield me from influences that would throw me off course and disturb my peace of mind?

3. What is the faith that assures a solid foundation in my life?

4. How does my philosophy provide a sure footing along the path to my objectives?

5. How can I build a more ample base upon which to build my dreams for the future and realize peace, love, and happiness in the present?

After you have pondered your thoughts, write your answers in a journal. Return from time to time and add new insights that you receive.

Your happiness pursuit can be successful by living a grounded life. White Eagle wrote, "If you will be steadfast on the path to which your feet have been guided, you will find the treasure of life, a never-ending stream of help and healing and happiness."

Standing firmly grounded in your faith, values, and purpose, you can realize the consistency and authentic happiness that many spend a lifetime seeking.

© Copyright 2005 by Steve Brunkhorst. Steve is a professional life success coach, motivational author, and the editor of Achieve! 60-Second Nuggets of Inspiration, a popular mini-zine bringing great stories, motivational nuggets, and inspiring thoughts to help you achieve more in your career and personal life. Get the next issue by visiting

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