As we mentioned in our previous article on happiness, everybody wants to be happy. The pursuit of happiness is a right guaranteed in the constitution. But most people Domino 99 don’t realize that there are two kinds of happiness: Happiness (with a capital H) and happiness (with a small h).
Happiness (big H) is something that runs very deep and is quite profound and long lasting; much more than its cousin, happiness (little h). Real Happiness goes by many names: tranquility, inner peace, serenity. Many other words also come to mind: calm, placidity, quiet, stillness, composure, poise, equanimity, repose, harmony, and peacefulness.
Unfortunately, people keep fooling themselves into thinking that happiness is merely feeling good. Not that feeling good is wrong or bad. It just don’t happen to be the same thing as the big H. Little h happiness occurs when we can get rid of pain and suffering. Big H happiness is not the absence of conflict or pain, but rather the ability to cope with both.
Happiness is not a goal in life but is rather a by-product of something else. That something else is self control. Perhaps a good way to understand self control is in the sense of self management. Rather than let your life run you, you need to learn the skills to manage (control) your life so that you can experience it the way you want it. By controlling four specific components of your life, you can find your pathway to Happiness. These four parts are what comprise human nature. The more you can control each of these elements, the closer you are to the big H.
This is different from New Age beliefs that promise you the ability to “feel good” no matter what is happening to you. Happiness (with the big “H”) doesn’t rule out suffering, pain and emotional distress. What it does give you is the ability to cope during such times. It gives you the self confidence that no matter what happens, you will eventually make it through and be a stronger person for it.
These four keys to Happiness are not independent of one another. They constantly interact with and affect each other. The chain reaction that is seen with dominoes is a good way to understand your life. Imagine a set of 5 dominoes where each one represents an important aspect of control. The diagram to the left shows what this might look like.
The first domino represents everything outside of you that triggers off the second domino. This could include weather, people, health, work and any other event that you encounter in your life.
The second domino stands for your thought life. Feelings (emotions and sensations) are the third domino and the fourth is your behavior domino.
The last domino stands for any consequences that happen in the outside world as the result of your behavior. You need to know that these dominoes never change position.
The Big H type happiness occurs when all the dominoes are standing. This is difficult because the first domino, life, has a tendency to keep falling on you (did you notice the round bottom?). So many things can go wrong in life. Yet, we try to keep the dominoes standing by attempting to control the first domino. This is not possible because you have no control over life events.
No matter how hard you try to keep the life domino from falling, it will eventually fall. Every time you set the first domino up it falls again. Then all the other dominoes fall. The trick is to spend less time trying to straighten out life.
You can have the Big H when you have learned to make the second domino immovable. You want to learn how to mentally superglue the second domino to the tabletop. When you can do this by changing your thought life, then you will have Happiness because the rest of the dominoes will remain standing.