"But what is happiness
except the simple harmony
between a man
and the life he leads?"
-- Albert Camus
I was first introduced to Jim Rohn when I was 31 years old and was on the verge of a dramatic change in my life. I loved him immediately. Since then, I've read pretty much all his books, listened to so many of his audio programs, when then were on cassette tapes. They are long gone, loaned and evaporated, and I can only hope that whomever has touched them, got even a tenth of what I got out of them, having listened to them many times.
I often quote Jim because he is so dang quotable. He became a master of personal development, didn't mince words, telling it like it is from his own struggles and journey. What a delight he has been to me, and I never met him in person. I am so grateful to Rod who convinced me to get involved in Shaklee, a multi-level marketing program, because he gave me the very first tape where I heard Jim Rohn speaking to a group distributors and managers in another such company in Dallas, Texas. I played it over and over again, finally transcribing it to print.
During my thirties, I bought many of his audio programs then from Nightingale-Conant. They were pricey, but I couldn't wait to get the next one. Then a couple of days ago, I noticed one of the best programs was available from Audible.com, titled, The Power of Ambition. I've been loving listening to his simple and yet exquisite wisdom and common sense all over again on my iPhone.
Early in the program, he refers to Ben Franklin, one of the founding fathers of our constitution, whose wisdom in the mid-1700's was well known in his Poor Richard's Almanac writings, and his ideas and methods have stood the test of time; albeit, many are probably unaware.
Jim shared three of Ben's principles on success, and I delight in sharing them here.
1. "Happiness doesn't come from big pieces of great success, but from small advantages hammered out day by day." Jim interprets this as there is no way to happiness, but happiness is the way. He says that you have to be happy the way you are, the way things are, with your life right now, even while in pursuit of something that you want different from where you are. To say, I will be happy when. . . is to be unhappy now. He said that when you get that big goal, you won't be any happier than whatever happiness you have now, and reminds us that Abraham Lincoln said that we will be as happy as we choose to be at any given time.
2. "Life is plastic." In other words it is moldable, changeable, and can be remade again and again to suit our desires. We have such flexibility. We can change our mind. We can change our direction. We can change our environment. We can change. This is something worth celebrating. We are not static. We are plastic.
3. "Success is pleasure." Jim says, we need to enjoy our travels, enjoy what we do, smell the roses, have fun along the way. We need to enjoy ourselves as we live our lives. I love the quote above from Albert Camus and it fits so nicely right here: "But what is happiness except the simple harmony between a man and the life he leads?" Simple harmony. Enjoying ourselves. In alignment. Going with the flow. Not resisting, yet persisting with pleasure.
What is interesting to me as I have shared just a glimpse of part of my own journey is that I didn't get these teachings in my thirties. I wanted to get them, but I was focused too much on something I shared the other day. I was focused on the problems, what was not right yet, feeling sorry for myself, wishing things would change, and much more. Then I would periodically take charge and get some movement.
Now I get this. Now it is the way I live. The problems are still problems, but I have learned to be happy and grateful along the way. I have learned that I can change any time I make a decision to do so. And, I have learned to do what I love to do--to enjoy my work, my life, and all the world around me. I created where I am, and I am pleased.
Thank You, Jim Rohn. You Have Made A Difference In Me And A Few Million Others Too. Your Legacy Lives.
Spread Some Joy Today--by paying attention to the joy that is available within you. That Source will never run dry. Not even a hiccup. There's only one instruction. We have to allow it. We control it completely. No one outside of ourselves could ever control it. The valve is inside.