Happiness Graph! Get Yourself a Handful!

Awesome and Simple Happiness Infographic by Mindbody GreenOne of my students, Jenny Reitz of Karma Fly Design sent this graph to me.  It’s beautiful!  It made me giggle.  It REALLY is that simple.  Don’t make life difficult!  Take a look at the graph, how does it make you feel? Does your ego scream, it’s not that simple!  If so, go read this blog.  I hope it helps you use this graph easier.  The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results.  It’s simple “ARE YOU HAPPY?”  If the answer is yes, keep doing what you are doing, if the answer is no and you want to be happy, change something!

Here’s the trick though, changing something doesn’t often time mean changing something EXTERNALLY.  It often times means there needs to be an internal shift, your thoughts, your attitude, or possibly your beliefs need shifting.

If you are not happy ask what needs to shift so that you will be happy. Watch as you pick things external of yourself.  This is the ego trying to keep you safe and blame others for your unhappiness.  Now if you really want to get happy ask yourself again what needs to shift so you can be happy, dig deeper, what can YOU do so that YOU can be happy.   Remember that you cannot control much outside of yourself so now that you know your happiness is in your hands go get yourself a handful!

Life is meant to be playful and beautiful.  A controlled and disciplined mind will bring you everything.

Sending all my Love,

Sandra Vanatko



Acceptance. Another Option.

Tuesday I was visiting with one of my students and we were talking about the weather.  If you have been living under a rock and haven’t heard, Texas is suffering from a severe heat wave with temperatures over a hundred degrees daily.  Today our high is supposed to be 109.  It’s only seven a.m. as I write and it’s already 85.  Yikes!  Everything is dying outside. Everything has turned brown and is drying up.  One of my students and I were visiting and in the middle of conversation she blurted out “I JUST WANT TO BLAME SOMEONE!!!”  We both started laughing so hard.  I almost fell over.   We both vented our frustration about how HOT it is right now.  I totally understood what she meant and how she feels.  Funny, though, you can’t really BLAME nature, can you?  So let this become your sadhana, your spiritual practice.

I was writing the other day and want to quote something from it.  “Our primitive brain works in two ways, fight or flight.  Our spirit gives us a third option, ACCEPTANCE.”  I remember my teacher always telling me that I have three options when any “problem” arises.  I’ve never forgotten his words of wisdom.  He always would say that in any situation you can:

1.  Leave the situation.

2.  Change the situation.

3.  Accept the situation fully.

Funny, I had never even considered the third option but as I continue to grow in my spiritual path I find the third option, ACCEPTANCE, is often the most powerful, most effective, and most lasting.  So many times I’ve thought I don’t have options in situations but now I realize I do have options, I certainly do!  You have freedom but you may choose not to exercise that freedom.

Back to our three options.  You can’t always leave the situation.  So now that only gives you two remaining options.   So what about changing the situation?  Sometimes this is possible, but again sometimes, NOT!  The third option and I believe most effective, is fully accepting the current situation.  Often times the miracle is a shift in your perception.

I will repeat that because I think it’s so important.  Often times in your problems the miracle is a shift in YOUR perception, in YOUR thoughts.  When your perception shifts the whole situation shifts.  Sometimes what you thought was a problem, won’t even be a problem after shifting your perception.  Acceptance is a powerful tool to use because if forces you to be more mentally flexible.  When you allow for mental flexibility you create space where your consciousness can expand.

Your ego may tell you that running away from the situation is cowardly.  I disagree.  In some circumstances I think it’s the best decision to make.  If a lion comes up on a deer the deer would be stupid to try to fight a lion, the deers strength is to run away, it’s the lions strength to fight.  For example, you cannot fight with negativity.  The moment you fight with negativity you become negative. Often time the wisest option is to run away from negativity.

So back to blaming the weather!

Let’s use our three options on the weather.  Unless you have a lot of money you can’t run away from the weather here in Weatherford.  So option one is probably out!  Option two is also out because you cannot change the weather.  So now all we have left is option number three.  We can accept the weather!  In this state of acceptance it doesn’t mean that now you will be loving the weather.  You might not be happy but you will have internal peace because you are in a state of acceptance where as before you were in a  state of resistance and any form of resistance is a form of negativity.  By accepting the weather as it is you will immediately lighten your load and have peace.

Start practicing your options with small problems in your life.  As you see this formula work for you begin applying this spiritual wisdom daily in your life to help you make good rational decisions.

Sending all my Love,

Sandra Vanatko


Photo by Jenny Reitz