One Lesson to Happiness.

I want to preface this by saying; I do not know what happiness actually means. Sure there is a dictionary definition, but it means different things to different people. To me, happiness means inner peace and ability to think freely, clearly and without hindrance.

Expressing gratitude is a lost art in the world. Have we lost the ability to be grateful? Have we taken the simple things for granted? What if I told you that happiness is explicitly linked to gratitude? Would you believe me?

You go through your daily life, puttering around and living your life, continually taking everything for granted. I am equally as guilty, but I am trying to improve.

The more grateful you are, the happier you will feel. This is mostly because as you take things for granted, the less they mean to you. Even if these things play big roles in your life, they are overlooked.

Naturally, your brain slows down and chooses the simplest method to run your body. You start to overlook the simple and important things and live your life in a mediocre state.

“Many people who order their lives rightly in all other ways are kept in poverty by their lack of gratitude.” – Wallace Wattles

These are three methods I use to take control of my brain and my happiness.

A) Be Grateful Every Morning

I try to begin everyday with ‘thank you.’ As soon as I wake up, I start by saying thank you. Thank you for another day, thank you for opening my eyes, and thank you for another breath.

There are a lot of things that can sweep you away in the night, so I am grateful. This sets the tone for the entire day. Rather than stumbling out of bed and letting the day take control of me, I choose to intentionally create the day with gratitude.

Each morning before you get out of bed, make it a habit to feel the feelings of gratitude in advance for the great day ahead, as though it is done.

B) “Be Grateful” List

On those days, where you are filled with negative feelings, thoughts, and unhappiness, being grateful helps. Sometimes, I look around and say, “Well I don’t have a health that I want. I don’t have the money I want. I don’t have the love that I want.”

Back up for second and focus on what you already have. It might be that you have the eyes to read this. It might be the clothes you have. It might be that you have the ability to come up with ideas and solutions. Sit and down and write all the things that you are grateful for.

It eases my brain and simplifies my life. I cut out all the negative thoughts and feelings and only think about the good in my life. It is impossible to bring more into your life if you are feeling ungrateful for the things you already have. Negative thoughts only breed more negative thoughts.

C) End Your Night with Grateful

When you lie in bed, reflect on your thoughts and actions of your day. Even on a terrible day, there is always something to be grateful for. I find that being grateful helps incredibly when I’ve had a bad day.

It lulls my body to sleep and prepares myself for another challenge the next day. I feel like being grateful has altered the way I perceive difficult situations.

Next time you encounter a difficult situation, stop and think. Forget the situation and say ‘thank you.’ Next time you encounter a crappy feeling, stop and think. Forget the feeling and say ‘thank you.’ Next time you encounter a negative thought, stop and think. Forget the thought and say ‘thank you.’

You will find momentary happiness and serenity. The more exercise gratitude, the longer this powerful impression will hold.


The Summer Bucket List


I have this overwhelming feeling erupting from my body. I finished my last exam yesterday and now I am done school for another four months! My mind and body are content with everything in this moment.

Finally, I have some free time. I can do whatever I feel like. I feel like Tom Cruise in Risky Business, sliding across the floor in my underwear, followed by a dancing montage.

For all my fellow prisoners of school, I am sure you are sharing this boat with me. Finally, you say, ‘my brain can sleep’ and ‘I have so much free time, I don’t know what to do with myself.’

I was out with my really close friends this past Sunday and we decided unanimously to start a bucket list, more clearly defined, a summer bucket list. A list of goals to achieve by the end of summer. The idea of writing a life-long list sounds daunting, so consider working with this time frame.

It should be filled with goals from different spectrums ranging from adrenaline rushing to just plain scary but, nonetheless, they should be all achievable by the end of summer.

Constructing the List 

Making a bucket list that you must achieve before the end of summer can be daunting. Make short-term goals that are relatively easy to complete. These are mine:

Skydive, ‘Go’ Game, trip to New York, make a short movie, go to Skyzone, and maybe a trip to Las Vegas

Skydiving is pretty scary but it is not the most daunting on the list. The real test will be the ‘Go’ Game. The ‘Go’ Game is when your friends point out a random girl and you HAVE to approach her.

If you have been reading my blog so far, you would know that approaching women absolutely terrifies me. But, in this case, it forces you to do it. In front of my friends, my manhood and pride are on the line. At this point, not approaching will ostracize me.

“If we did the things we are capable of, we would astound ourselves” – Thomas Edison

The list has to be short and concise. Put something in there that pushes your limits, something that terrifies you, and something that expands your horizons. Achieving these goals by the end of summer will change you.

“Time is on my side, yes it is” – The Rolling Stones

The next thing is jumping over the hurdles of excuses you put in front of yourself. Time is the biggest one. ‘There isn’t enough time in the day to do everything.’ ‘I work too much.’ ‘I just want to relax sometimes.’

These excuses pile up endlessly, until nothing is achieved. You start school the same person you left. No surprises, no cool scars, same you.

I am far from a mathematician but let me drop some numbers on you. There are 168 hours in a week and accounting for a full time job (44) you will have 124. You should be sleeping at least 8 hours a night (56), which leaves you with 68 hours to do whatever the hell you want to do. That’s almost 10 hours of free time a day.

That’s almost ten hours to read, write, draw, and sing. More importantly, that’s almost ten hours to formulate and achieve your bucket list.

Don’t think of it as using your precious ‘relaxing time,’ but more as expanding you. The time excuse has brought you down for far to long –insert time pun here-

I wish I were witty enough to come up with a time pun. But alas, I shall leave the puns to your imagination (put some in the comments below).

Don’t procrastinate! Time has a way of sneaking by you. Days will pass by and before you know it you are back at school or work or whatever you do, the same person.


When these are completed, I will be a different man before school starts, we’ll all be. If I experience my entire list, I will think, act, and maybe even look different.

Maybe I will get a life-altering scar in New York by some street thug.

Regardless, I accept all that life has to offer to me. I need to improve in all aspects of life, expand my horizons and achieve happiness. And it all starts this summer, with that list.

Living For Yourself

I wish all divorces were like Mrs. Doubtfire. You know when Sally Field just calmly tells Robin Williams that she wants a divorce. They both agree and it’s time for hilarious antics. Instead, there is frivolous arguing and constant fighting. Does it really matter who’s right? Is there a person that will give them a medal if they are right?

I just don’t get it. What’s so hard about it? Two people can’t get along. The answer is simple. Separate. You have one life. That’s it. Unless you believe you in reincarnation, you only have one.

That’s one to achieve, inspire, aspire, help, and, most of all, live. It simply doesn’t make sense to me. Why squander your lives away? You are not getting any younger or happier. It’s just wasted time.


Live Life to The Fullest

Children laugh and smile around two hundred times a day. If you’ve ever had the pleasure to spend extended amounts of time with kids, volunteering, teaching, or even time with your own kids, you’ll see. They’re practically giddy for no apparent reason. Anything is fun and everything is about momentary happiness. As we age, laughter is reduced to eight times, roughly.

How do we go from two hundred to eight? Is there just a lack of things to be happy about? To laugh and smile about? Or is there just too much conflict? Too many things to be upset about and argue over.

For me, I don’t know what the key to happiness is. It’s so subjective. But I know you should do what you want and what makes you happy. I mean, really happy. Do something that makes you laugh or smile everyday. It’s so important to feed your happiness monster.

“Be who you are and say what you think because the people that mind don’t matter and the people that matter don’t mind” – Dr. Seuss

I love that quote. It reminds me to always be happy with myself. It reminds me of the people I surround myself with. The fact, that they are content, when I am myself. I am able to say what I want without fear of my circle shunning or ridiculing me. It makes me smile, just thinking about it.

Tick Tock Goes The Clock

You spend so much time fighting and arguing for what? It resolves nothing and just pushes you further away from laughter. It’s just wasted time. Time is so precious. People say that time flies. First, you’re crawling on all fours, crying and pooping yourself and next thing you know, you are old, barely walking with greys strands in your beard.


A tad dramatic, I know.

But when I think about it, the person I was last year is completely different than the man I am now. I’ve changed so much since last April. But I did it, by not wasting time. Think about who you were last year. What did you do? Who were your friends? What music did you like? You’ve changed so much. I know I have.

Focus on yourself and improve. Start a new hobby. Read a book. Try a new sport. Go skydiving. Exercise. Dance. Travel. Do something to achieve to add to your hypothetical achievement shelf. But, most of all, remember, that through it all, you are happy. Every other emotion should be pushed away to make more room for more happiness.

On my deathbed I want to have no regrets. I want to be able to look at hypothetical achievement shelf and see all my accomplishments. All my aspirations achieved.

For now though, I want to focus on myself, find happiness, and ignore pointless arguments.

Wanting to Need.

Sifting through my life is always interesting. I examine all my flaws and come up with ways to improve. I try my hardest to improve in all ways, but sometimes it’s incredibly difficult to grasp.

Recently, I’ve sorted all the various desires in my life into wants and needs. It really puts everything into perspective. It makes you appreciate all the little things that you may have taken for granted.

I need to breathe. I need to eat. I need my mom. I need my friends. I need to be happy. I need to succeed. I need to grow stronger physically, emotionally, mentally, and spiritually.

“Our necessities never equal our wants” – Benjamin Franklin

These are my needs. Everything else is a want. Everything else can be overlooked if necessary. In my life, I want a lot of things and that’s okay. It’s okay to want things. But you can’t let that hinder you from growing stronger.


Wanting Right Out of Happiness

When I was younger, I was in a terrible relationship. At the time, I thought I needed her. I needed her love. I needed her support. I needed her body against mine. But it got to the point, where I realized some needs are not worth it.

Sometimes, wants are disguised as needs. You convince yourself so badly, that you need something. You lose sight of your true needs. Your wants masquerade in your head and you think, ‘This is it. This is what I need.’

“When we confuse the needs with the desires; all the struggles we take lead to disappointment and unhappiness” – M.F. Moonzajer

Sometimes, wants battle your happiness monster, jockey for control. You want that girl. You want that house. You want that job. When you don’t get it, it injures your happiness monster.

But when you step back and analyze it. I mean, really think about it. Will you go on living if you don’t have that person, that house, that job? I broke up with her and here I am. I’m still here albeit, barely. But living, nonetheless.

Live for Yourself

Wants are necessary to have. They can be extra goals, new achievements to strive for or just general material things. A new iPhone? Sure, why not? But that shouldn’t define you.

The ‘wants’ should be for you. They need to be for you. They are the guides to your success. Healthy ‘wants’ are your Sherpa to the top of Goal Mountain. They should guide you towards the correct path and satiate your happiness monster.

Taking a step back and looking through your life can be dramatic. You take a look at everything you’ve done, the good and ugly. You realize where you were, where you went and how you got there. Who you hurt and whom you helped along the way. But in the end, this is the person I am. This is the person I’ve become and it was influenced by my needs. The wants were secondary and have helped me, but at the same time, injured me.

Wants are a Catch 22.

Write a list of your wants and needs. See where you stand and what you stand for. You’ll be surprised once they are on paper. Prioritize your wants. Keep them short and concise.

If a want is destroying you inside, physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually, cast it away. You don’t need it.

The Key to Motivation

Sometimes I never want to get out of bed. It’s not because I’m comfortable or warm. Instead, it feels like the weight of the world is on my back and I am ready to give up.

Sometimes, I just feel beat up or drunk or disoriented. I’m neither of those things, but my brain is demotivated and unwilling.


These times are rare, but I find it incredibly hard to cope with. How do I motivate myself to get out of bed? How do I live my life while in this foreign state of mind?

I made a big mistake though. You have to forget about motivation. There is a reason you may feel unmotivated. You might not like your job. Or your house. Or your life. Take a step back and analyze everything. There is some place where things just don’t connect.

The only way to be truly satisfied is to do what you believe is great work, and the only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking, and don’t settle.” – Steve Jobs

What makes you truly happy? In this moment, there are only a handful of things that make it on my ‘happy’ list. Write down your happy list. Those are the things you should surround yourself with.

Enjoy Every Moment Of It

When I started blogging, I thoroughly enjoyed it. It gave me a place to write, express myself, and, most importantly, be vulnerable. I tend to put up a barbed fence around myself and let only a select few in. However, expressing myself through writing came natural to me. I enjoyed every moment of it.

You have to search for what you love and do that. When you do something you don’t thoroughly enjoy, finding motivation can be hard.

Last month, I had to write five essays for school. I procrastinated and despised every single one of them. Writing for school weighs on my body, like a ball and chain attached to my leg.

Find a hobby that you love. Work for a job only if you love it. Most of us are in jobs that we hate, unfulfilling jobs.

I want more than this. I need more than this.

Do things that make you happy, cancel everything else out. They’re not worth it.


This is my 10th post. I’m surprised at myself, but it makes me wonder. There are only a handful of things that I am thoroughly consistent with. I usually start something and I’m gung-ho and slowly it dwindles, till I lose interest and stop.

Writing has fed my intrinsic happiness monster, knowing that maybe, JUST MAYBE, someone would read my work and genuinely find it helpful, in some way. This monster fuels me to keep writing.

Motivation cannot be feigned. It’s finals time and instead of studying I was sitting in the library, writing a post. A friend asked me why I’m focusing on the post instead of studying. I think writing the post is more important. In the midst of all my essays and finals, I still find time to write my posts. But it makes definitely makes me wonder. Why do I keep coming back to write?

Writing has helped me express my inner fears, desires, and aspirations into the world and it has me craving more.

I believe I’ve found what I enjoy and I hope that I can produce great work as well.