Is it possible to be happy for no reason? For years I’ve studied and practiced intention and attention – the topics of my two previous blogs – and can personally attest to the effectiveness of these principles. As a young girl I listened to Earl Nightingale and learned that we become what we think about. Lately however, I’ve become fascinated with a process that seems at first glance to contradict the principles of intention and attention. It’s the “no tension” part of this interesting phenomenon…the ability to relinquish attachment to an outcome. You might call this “going with the flow” or “rolling with the punches.” Some spiritual advisors call it, “letting go and letting God.” Others call it “the law of detachment.”
I call it…choosing to be happy. It means we simply buckle up and enjoy the ride, regardless! Of course we should attract what we want into our lives, boldly declare our intentions and notice (pay attention to) what is happening as our own stories unfold. But, just as important, is to release any stress we may feel over an attachment to a particular outcome. I’ve finally figured out that as much as I’d like to…I’m not really running this show. It no longer makes any sense to overanalyze everything or to be consumed by all the possible things that could go wrong.
Building a business in our industry has taught me not to take myself too seriously. Honestly, you really can blunder your way to the top! In fact, think of the most delightful and memorable moments in your life. If you’re like me, they may be times when things went a little (actually, sometimes terribly) wrong…but you were able to release that tension and laugh about it.
I have an entire archive of USANA horror stories…times when I blew it so badly…but now, I can smile. They are among my best memories. I’ll share just one:
My husband Ric and I were on an extended road trip and stopped at a little café to get some dinner. There were booths lining both sides of the wall and only one other couple in the café. As we were eating our sandwiches I noticed the woman on the other side of the café and down the aisle from us open her USANA HealthPak. I smiled and mentioned something about it being a small world to Ric. We continued eating and I wondered whether or not the couple would recognize me. I love running into USANA distributors around the country and frankly, I’m flattered when they recognize me.
Well, the couple finished before we did and headed our way toward the front door. I tried to catch the woman’s eye, but she didn’t seem to notice or recognize me. I couldn’t help myself.
“Excuse me…I think we have something in common.” She looked at me like I’d lost it.
“Do I know you?”
“I’m Collette…with USANA!” Still, just a blank stare but I was not to be denied.
“We take the same vitamins…I saw you open your HealthPak…see, I’ve got mine right here!”
She looked at me for a second and then…with just a hint of annoyance as she and her husband walked out the door, “those were crackers for my chili.”
Well, I can’t tell you how much laughter that particular story has brought to my husband and children and even to me – once I got over the humiliation. And that’s just one of many, many stories where I completely embarrassed myself. I’ve asked the Home Office at USANA if it would be possible to package the HealthPak so it doesn’t look quite so much like a package of saltines but they’re not budging.
The lesson: Laugh at yourself. Release the tension. Happiness is in the journey – with all its bumps and detours. Here’s a suggestion I use to turn up my happy meter: every night, think of one good thing that happened that day (or one thing that in retrospect seems funny) and ponder on why it happened. Sweet dreams!