The Mercado de Maravillas lives up to its name. Should you ever find yourself in Madrid and desperate to buy half a kilo of pigs’ ears, a pair of fluffy slippers, a whole beef heart, a poncho, a jar of Peruvian chilli sauce and a bottle of good, strong bleach all under one roof, the stallholders of the Market of Wonders will be happy to oblige. Its most life-enhancing marvels, however, may lie in the piles of neatly stacked fruit and vegetables, the bags of nuts and in the treasuries of fish reclining, dead-eyed but odourless, on beds of ice. Markets such as the Mercado de Maravillas – which have long flourished across Spain……..
Everyone seeks the fastest and easiest path to happiness. It’s what drives us as humans. Hoping for a silver bullet that will get us to that end goal, be it wealth, love, or fame. Only when that goal has been met, we reason, will we be happy. I’ve read every book and even written a few about this journey. However all, my own included, have left me unsatisfied. To help find the answer, I’ve surrounded myself with successful people. I’ve gotten to know the famous, the ultra-wealthy, and brilliant……..
Shaping your life is a process that follows many principles, but ultimately, it is about taking the time to discover what you believe at your core and what you really want to achieve in life, then designing a plan to help you reach all your dreams. Life design strategy enables you to recognize your weaknesses and build from your strengths to form a foundation for a well-designed life that is purposefully crafted. When you start down this journey of shaping your life into the form of your greatest contentment, you’ll enjoy personal fulfillment and joy along with immeasurable accomplishments…….
Take a close enough look at any life of note, and you’ll quickly discover a legacy of failure. However, it’s important to distinguish between failed experiments and failure in the Platonic ideal sense of the word. Experimental failure happens when you try something, and it doesn’t work the way you intended. We’ve all experienced this brand of failure before. Perhaps you once worked up the courage to ask someone out, and you were turned down. Or, maybe you launched a new product on the market only to be met with utter silence. Regardless of the form it takes, this kind of experimental failure hurts, but it still has a silver lining. These experiences enable us to learn from our mistakes, find new solutions, and grow as individuals……
A secret about success is that it is just as much about what you give up as what you gain. Are you willing to give up late nights out for late nights in working? Are you willing to turn a deaf ear to blind criticisms? Are you willing to listen to helpful ones? Are you going to be able to give up the doubt, the resistance, the uncertainty, the avoidance mechanisms? As Mastin Kipp says: Are you willing to live as other people won’t, so maybe you can live as other people can’t? High achieving people understand that the foundation of life is the white space – and that because our energy is limited each day, what we spend it on will define us in the future…….
Our previous article, 30 Things to Stop Doing to Yourself, was well received by most of our readers, but several of you suggested that we follow it up with a list of things to start doing. In one reader’s words, “I would love to see you revisit each of these 30 principles, but instead of presenting us with a ‘to-don’t’ list, present us with a ‘to-do’ list that we all can start working on today, together.” Some folks, such as readers Danny Head and Satori Agape, actually took it one step further and emailed us their own revised ‘to-do’ versions of the list…..
We all know people who seem years – nay, decades – younger than their biological age. Children’s book author Susanne Gervay is one of them. She’s 66 but feels more in her mid-20s. Rather than slowing down, her career continues to escalate. In her spare time she’s often jogging around her local park or doing laps at the pool. That is, when she’s not zipping around the country on book tours. International adventures are still on the cards, too. Her most recent sojourn was to Turkey, where she attended a literary festival before hitting the road with her daughter for two weeks……
Originally posted on Upward Journeys: Happiness is within reach. Here is my list of mood boosting activities – it is a list I keep for when I need a pick-me-up. Try making your own list and watch your life expand. Write a letter to an old friend. In fact write lots of letters to lots of…
Great news: taking time off is good for your career.
Usually, taking time off is considered the antithesis of a good work ethic. You’re supposed to be productive, and that means busy at all times, right? But as it turns out, busy is always be better. As author Alan Cohen wrote, “There is virtue in work and there is virtue in rest. Use both and overlook neither.”
Nordic countries like Finland and Norway may regularly come out on top of world happiness indexes for wellbeing year-on-year – but new research shows the happiness is far from universal.
A report authored by the Nordic Council of Ministers and the Happiness Research Institute in Copenhagen aims to provide a more nuanced picture of life in the Nordic nations – suggesting their reputations as utopias for happiness are masking significant problems for some parts of the population, especially young people.
It asked people to mark their satisfaction with life out of 10 – with people above a seven categorizedm as thriving, fives and sixes as struggling and anyone scoring below a four deemed to be suffering.
It found that in total 12.3% of people living in the Nordic region said they were struggling or suffering, with 13.5% of young people ranking themselves as such.
It found general health and mental health were both closely associated with happiness ratings – with unemployment, income and sociability also playing a role.
Mental Health As a Factor
Researchers found mental health to be one of the most significant barriers to subjective well-being.
Their data found these problems being reported by young people in particular.
It found that young women consistently reported feeling depressed more than young men did.
What Other Patterns Did it Find?
The authors say that in Nordic countries high incomes protected people against feeling they were suffering or struggling.
They also found that people were more than three times more likely to report a low score if they were unemployed, especially men, who were also more likely to report mental health problems when unemployed.
It said that research shows lack of social contact was a greater problem among Nordic men than women.
Other conclusions included:
Ethnic minorities living in Nordic countries were less happy
Very religious people were more likely to be happier
No difference was found between people living in the country and those in cities
Is It Really That Bad Then?
While the figures may seem stark, it is in isolation in some of the happiest – overall – countries on earth.
Although the report particularly focuses on Nordic countries, it does compare some of the data to that recorded elsewhere.
So while 3.9% of people in the Nordic region may report scores so low they are classed as “suffering” – that level is as high as 26.9% in Russia and 17% in France.
So the picture in Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden does remain relatively rosy – just not as perfect as some may have painted.