Welcome back to the Growing Tree of Life, our weekly exploration of personal growth and well-being.
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Do you want to be happy ?

Issue Number: #069
Date: 16 May 2024
Reading Time: 3 minutes

Sometimes life feels overwhelming, with problems at work and home draining out all the happiness from our lives. The problem is that often we expect that something or someone should bring us happiness. Yet happiness is not something that happens to you. Yes, some random events can bring joy, but joy and happiness are two different things. Joy is short-lived. Happiness is a state of being, state of mind. And because happiness is a mindset, it depends on you. Basically, happiness is something you create for yourself.

What do I mean by that?

Take for example money. There are happy rich people and unhappy rich people. There are happy poor people and unhappy poor people. So, money are not a source of happiness. The same goes for weather. Some people are happy no matter if sun is shining or it's raining. Others are unhappy in both situations. Relationships are another example. There are happy single people and happy couples. And, of course, there are unhappy singles and couples.

So how is happiness created?

We need two opposite things in our lives which together create happiness. We need certainty and we need variety. Certainty gives us peace of mind. Every person needs different level of certainty, but every person need it. When we reach our minimal threshold of certainty, the next thing we need is variety. Because having things the same all the time is boring. And boredom is killer of happiness.

To avoid that trap, we need to have a variety. Some people are naturally more daring and spontaneous. If that's not you, try to plan for variety. For example, you can decide that every week you will do one new thing or thing you didn't do in a long time.

I know that it can be difficult. Often, we see something fun or interesting but think, "I don't have time or money," and make excuses. Even if it could bring us joy, we skip it for various reasons. But happiness doesn't happen on it's own. You need to plan for it.

Remember, it must be something new. We need variety and novelty to keep things interesting.

So my tip today is:
When something sparks your interest — something new or something you haven't done in a long time — add it to your to-do list.

I did this today. That's actually the reason why my newsletter is going out so late. I wanted to write this email after the event, so I can tell you about it.

What event?

A few days ago, I saw an advert from a modelling agency looking for male models over 50. It sparked my interest. I thought it might be a fun experience, so I applied and sent them one of my photos.

They liked my look, so, they called me back and invited me for a photo session. Today, I went for it, and it was really fun.

Side note: No, I am not changing my career. :) I might do some modelling, but only as a side hobby.

Below are some of the photos from the session.

What do you think? Let me know.

To wrap it up, let me repeat today's tip:

If you come across something interesting, don’t dismiss it. Try it.

Maybe you see someone busking in town and feel drawn to join in singing. Don’t stop yourself—just do it.
Sometimes we need to be silly to enjoy life.
When an unexpected idea pops into your head, go for it. It will give you joy and make your life more exciting and varied. We need stability for peace but also variety for joy. So when something new catches your eye, and you think it might be fun, give it a try.

That's all for today. See you next Thursday and thank you for reading!


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