Everyone has a happy place they go to.
So, what makes you happy?
The tool kit for happiness really is discovered through attitude, seeing life as the cup half full, curiosity, taking risks and yes education and training in life. Happiness is a life skill that develops the more you allow happiness. It is like a muscle, it strengthens. It is a decision (choice).
So here are a few ideas to contemplate from my own background.
Gross National Happiness as a Happy Place?
Gross National Happiness is to measure out progress by how happy we really are. Are we working “doing” to live or are we “being” happy first? We can combine work and happiness. The most productive people are happy in that they are working at what makes them happy. Happy people don’t bully others. Happy people are healthy. Happy people help others. Happy people are not fighting as they found what makes them fulfilled. Unhappy people do the opposite.
Happiness! Australia will manifest a Happy Place for everyONE.
Worldpeacefull is a Happy Place
Happiness Australia is the happy place or heart of a Worldpeacefull. It is the centre peace. I chose to create world peace as my work. This is a brief overview.
It is an outgrowth or flower of Worldpeacefull, as happiness empowers a peaceful world. This website is packed full of ideas and workshops that you can play with. Feel free to visit Worldpeacefull for peace education, media and books. Creativity is unleashed when people feel free to express themselves. www.worldpeacefull.com
A Worldpeacefull awakens reconciliation as a sustainable future by developing inner peace, conflict resolution, anti-bullying, truthful communications, pro-activism and e-books to share how we can develop peaceful behaviours. Visit www.worldpeacefull.com
In the words of Kahil Gibran:
“Your joy is your sorrow unmasked. And the selfsame well from which your laughter rises was oftentimes filled with your tears.”
And the most important truth: Our Happy Destiny is Unavoidable
Partnership Economics is a Happy Place?
Many have sought happiness in work…
I was employed in 400 companies. This experience showed me a wide range of workplaces and what I discovered was that the majority of people were not happy. It started me questioning the way we work. Is work about ‘work’ or should it be a ‘happy place’? My sister said once: “you don’t go to work for love” I wondered why?
Trained in Economics and Marketing at Griffith University, Queensland
I learned that economics arose to distribute goods and services to meet needs and wants efficiently. The demand and supply of goods and services was determined by optimal price (equilibrium). The original purpose of economics was happiness. This has not been achieved as profit has been the sole focus not the human costs as externalities to systems detached from real human abundance and needs. A very good example of partnership economics as a future trading system is found in the work of Riane Eisler who wrote the book ‘The Real Wealth of Nations’. The intent is to create a caring economics. This focused on exchange as a partnership between equals and included the non-profit sector and non-paid sectors as equally valuable sectors of the economy. Happiness Australia endorses partnership not as a ‘new normal’ but what is natural. We naturally share and go into partnership because we are equal. The future will be based on REAL HOPES which is a values based system of exchange as economics is transitioned into a new way of working together.
The most valuable aspects of life are not for sale as you cannot price happiness, you cannot calculate love, you cannot put a price on family or friends. This is the real wealth of all nations, it is a very sacred space. Happiness is not a commodity, it is a state of being when you have found your true abundance which you will discover has nothing to do with money.
Market Research Analyst
In this area I was undertaking research for both companies and government. I worked as an Independent Researcher running my own business for 6 years. I discovered the world of public opinion polling and focus group discussions. I learned from this profession that there was common sense in the public and that there were no average people. I respected all voices I heard and realised this was as close to democracy as we could get. So I am in favour of working closely with the public to understand what they feel, their needs and concerns and what will inspire them to live happy lives. Ultimately to find their own happy place.
I had two questions when I finished my economics degree…
- How does economics measure human social emotional satisfaction and human progress?
- How does economics deal with growth modelling given the fact that the planet has finite limits?
The happiness of economics is to focus on Gross National Happiness as the real indicators of abundance and the real wealth of a nation. This is IN THE PEOPLE not the products. This is a starting point to transition to a better future based on what truly makes us happy.
Many initiatives and approaches to happiness have been developed which empower our society to think and feel in another way. We can create the society we want when we start to question why we are NOT happy? The problem is that we tolerate the unhappiness as if there is no choice we tell ourselves. We put up with it. Indeed there is always a choice. It is to make the steps towards changing the way we see in order to open up to a new path where happiness can occur even when life is difficult. That is the litmus test.
Nonviolence is a Happy Place
Alternatives to Violence (AVP) trainer (community building)
This training was provided by the Quakers who are known to be peacemakers and have lead the world in community based techniques to empower communities in resolving conflict peacefully, understanding tensions, projections, misconceptions, body language, listening, beliefs and narratives we all believe without question. The course facilitated questions, discussion, activities to build community and generate deeper self understanding and awareness of others as part of a community. This then frees communities to experience the confidence that conflict transformation brings and recognise transformative power, this is true empowerment of happiness.
Peace is a Happy Place
Everyone is searching for peace…
Peace Studies (Graduate Diploma), La Trobe University
Many may be feeling anger at the world today. Many want to fight what they feel is wrong. However, this tends to embroil people in more conflict. As anger feeds on anger. It impacts health and it demonises other people as the ‘enemy’.
Peace studies revealed how peace is critical for society and a world at peace. Peace is about learning to understand violence, the various practitioners in nonviolence, the types of nonviolent practices and exploring international relations and real security. An important part of this course was learning about Mohatma Gandhi and how he formulated Satyagraha (holding onto truth) and Ahimsa (nonviolent love). Peace naturally explores conflict and human rights, ecological peace, nuclear flash points in the world and how to resolve conflict through alternative dispute resolution. Mediation is about meeting in the middle and learning from conflict in positive and respectful ways. It is critical for world peace.
Rotary Peace Fellow, Bangkok, Thailand
Selected from a worldwide candidacy to study on the Rotary Peace and Conflict Studies program at Chulalongkorn University. My reason for going on the program was to understand our nearest neighbours and deepen my understanding of peace in the Asia Pacific region. I learned from world experts their approaches to conflict resolution, conflict mapping, nonviolent activism, counter-terrorism and peaceful philosophies and approaches to evoke peace. It was a comprehensive and inspiring course as it connected me with participants from across the world and catalysed an understanding within myself of positive transformation.
The course was both practical and theoretical. We had the opportunity to travel to Northern Thailand to meet stakeholders engaged in the Salween dam dispute. Meet with activists in Burma (Myanmar) who were traveling into the forests in Myanmar as teachers or doctors.
We visited the killing fields and Tuol Sleng Prison in Cambodia. This was a former high school. We met with the United Nations, NGO’s in Cambodia dealing with complex social and political issues. We explored peace and conflict from a range of perspectives. This would be the happy/sad part of this work. As we cannot have one without the other. Peace is about balance. Therefore, when we learn the value of positivity, conflict transformation, education and the realities on the ground we can then work on solutions. We can consider ways to turn conflict around. We can indeed change how we treat others who share our world and learn to see anew.
It was Albert Einstein who said: “You cannot solve a problem from the same consciousness that created it. We need to think anew”
Einstein: “…Energy cannot be created or destroyed it can only be changed from one form to another”
Transformation means to change from one form to another. We get to choose if that is violent or nonviolent. The outcome depends on how we think, feel and see a situation. I look for the good.
Mahatma Gandhi is famous for coining nonviolence. He moved India from imperial rule towards home rule. He empowered his own people to reclaim their power and used the symbol of the spinning wheel which meant home spun, which is self sovereignty of the nation. His powerful words that evoke the idea that we are all responsible for change, was to: ‘be the change you wish to see in the world’. We can all can all make a difference. So rather than condemning we create opportunities for people to learn to model and integrate positive change without any violence at all.
This experience made conflict real and solutions possible. Yes someone maybe responsible for the problem. But YOU are responsible for the solution. You are welcome to say ‘I’ve got no choice’ or decide ‘to be the change’. We all get to choose the happy or sad face.
Laughter is a Happy Place
Susan Carew like many others has sought happiness through life’s journey to realise that the real happiness was found in being a Fool! She became a clown and the jester was realised as the archetype of true freedom as our true nature.
Life is like a mirror what you put out in life reflects back to you life. So if you send out joy and happiness it mirrors back to you through smiles, laughter and a peaceful world. What you think about you bring about. If you think the world is fearful, toxic and dangerous you will see that played back in the media those you speak to, it seems to be true. Is it true?
The Jester is known for speaking the truth to power and encouraging the asking of questions. The Fool is about life’s quest for the mythical Holy Grail. This is to know we are on the Fool’s journey awakening to self discovery. That is when we get the joke.
When we discover what allows happiness then great things happen. We see extraordinary ideas generated, enthusiasm expands possibilities and then the courage to act on ideas empowers as you trail blaze new initiatives.
Happy people make things happen and their optimism is the light in the darkness that others follow. There is always real hope.
Teach Values as a Happy Place
REAL HOPE Peace, Nonviolence and Anti-bullying program
As a World Peace Clown I had the wonderful opportunity to teach REAL HOPES in schools. This was a transformative program where as a peace clown I could model peace in a way where all are accepted unconditionally, where words are used to encourage and inspire and play is part of the curriculum. It rewires the brain to see in different ways which is the very competency that enables problem solving in conflict resolution. This program focused on nonviolence as an alternative to violence, peace as inner and outer work creating the inner environment to negate negative projection and through thought, word and action create an outer behaviour and attitude that creates peace to be a natural outcome. This work is the most exciting work as it frees people to be who they are.
REAL HOPES has come from my dream of peace and can bring harmony into workplaces, schools and in the community. This program is envisaged as a future curriculum, worldwide. The children have fantastic gifts, they just need to remember who they are.
Clowning Around the World is a Happy Place
Travelling to Russia with Dr. Patch Adams
Some may recall the film ‘Patch Adams‘. Patch inspired my journey as a peace clown/jester and a good human being. He coined the famous saying ‘laughter is the best medicine’. Myself and 40 clowns visited orphanages, nursing homes, hospitals to spread the joy of laughter, fun and positive community. This experience changed my life as I saw how our joy and fun changed the lives of thousands. This was a profound experience and opened my eyes to clowning as community building. The only focus is happiness.
As a multinational team of clowns we learned how a small group can develop loving service with strangers. Patch called this the ‘love revolution’ (refer www.worldpeacefull.com). Imagine if our world societies chose to live to give (abundance) rather than take to have (psychological poverty) our societies would shift from a culture of fear to one of loving kindness. This was directly experienced. There is no need for security as all unfolds as Patch says as ‘friendshipism’. Clowning taught me to open the heart and see all people as myself. I had the privilege of seeing beauty in every face. This in the reality is the real world when we are unmasked. The power of the mask is the ability to unmask to see a world in colour not black and white.
Travelling the World as a World Peace Clown
This journey deepened my understanding of peace in myself and peace in the world as directly connected. I travelled to 20 countries to meet people of diverse cultures and languages. I gained profound insights into the shape and variety of those who share our world. I came to see that we are ‘same same but different’ and that is the very spice of life. I witnessed the capitalist system and globalisation moving into different traditions and how the people responded. I witnessed severe poverty, cultural diversity, environmental pressures and kindness in many of the people I met. I realised the world was indeed my family and that is the attitude to adopt when dealing with world’s people. We are the one family seeing life in a myriad of ways but at the same time we all laugh, cry, smile, love and dream. We have much more in common than is different.
Travelling Australia to teach peace education and conflict resolution
Travelling Australia to teach peace was to explore my own country, to meet people from the country and the city and from diverse backgrounds. As a peace clown I visited rural children and had the very special opportunity to teach indigenous children conflict resolution. A fantastic educator from the Northern Territory Department of Education was my guide. I never forget the bright smiles and dressing kids up as clowns to see them having lots of fun. I met many children and that is my happiness as a peace clown, it is the true reward for what I do. There is no greater joy than bringing happiness to others. I learned that peace is an inside job and to bravely face what we fear and take a risk. I travelled alone and found a great sense of freedom and peace in following my own heart.
Travelling to India with Humanitarian Clowns
The journey of travelling to Southern India (Tamil Nadu). There were so many shining faces and wonderful experiences, a few notable ones were:
- Visiting Mother Therese’s Missionaries of Charity abandoned women,
- Visiting a school for deaf children,
- Blind children,
- HIV aids kids,
- freed bonded labourers who never smiled,
- remote tribal villages who had not seen clowns,
We travelled in tuk tuk’s enlivening the streets of Velore and watching faces turn from neutral to laughter in seconds. It was life changing. It filled me with REAL HOPES for the world.
Travelling to Nepal with Rotary to teach a Culture of Peace
On this journey we visited the remote villages of Ghara and Padwar (Western Nepal) and a wonderful celebration of welcome happened. The people were so kind and generous to us. I had the opportunity to clown on the streets and on public transport in Kathmandu. I invited a Rotarian to clown with me. He was very entertaining like a mistral, singing songs with a big grin. We connected with everyone as all are special. As a clown I use a feather duster lightly dusting, my love glasses to remind us to see with love, juggling life in the infinity pattern and blowing up balloons. The props become the excuse to love and laugh with strangers and the whole space transforms as people realise life is about fun. They have hard lives so it is a wonderful experience to bring a highlight to someone’s day where they can talk about it. This bit by bit brings peace into a troubled world. Who knows what the ripple of kindness and love does? Perhaps someone decides to stay on earth another day.
Patch Adams stated in Saint Petersburg, Russia that:
“Everyone is great…now get to work!!”
He is right. It is a question of whether people believe that or not!
Do you believe in your own greatness?
I certainly do.
I am going home. Home is where the heart is. This is Happiness! Australia for a Worldpeacefull.
Your Happy Destiny is Unavoidable