If you aren’t bringing joy to other people, what are you doing?

What’s the point of living?

Isn’t there enough negativity and toxicity in the world? Why add to that? What good could it possibly do? All you do is reinforce the idea of a crappy world.

Be the agent of change.

Resolve to be bring positivity to those around you.

Instead of thinking the whole world is against you (it’s not), believe that the world is full of opportunity to make a difference for the better (it is).

Believe that what you do now–how you treat people today–can potentially make your home, employer, community, organization, state, country, and earth, a happier place.

It’s so easy to start. Just be nice to people.

How hard can that be?(although, it’s easier when you love yourself)

Don’t lash out, criticize, belittle.

Don’t be the equivalent of an internet troll.

Instead, say hello to strangers. Smile at people. Give compliments. Thank them. Show gratitude for anyone that helps you even the slightest bit.

This begins the process of training your mind for happiness.

No one grows up thinking: “gee, I want to be an anxiety ridden, negative, unhappy person when I get older”.

So stop being one!

But to stop being negative, you have to change your thought patterns.

Neuroscience confirms what Buddhism has been saying for over 2,000 years: that our thoughts can change our brains.

What you focus on will wire your brain to reinforce whatever it is you focus on.

In a real sense, practice makes perfect.

Focus on negativity, and your brain will wire itself accordingly. You’ll be amazingly efficient at being negative and unhappy.

Unhappy will be your habitual state.

Focus on positive things, and your brain will reinforce that. Develop habits of thought and actions that produce happiness.

Happy will become your habitual state.

But to be happy, you actually have to engage in practices that produce real happiness.

Is it a coincidence that all the world’s religions and philosophies have at their core a Golden Rule?

Is it a coincidence that helping others is considered essential to a well-lived life?

Is it a coincidence that all the world’s religions and philosophies warn followers about the illusion of finding happiness in the material/sensual world?

I don’t think so.

I’m fortunate in that what I love to do–teaching, training, and writing–are also things that help other people. When I started doing what I loved to do, my happiness levels increased dramatically.

Help others/be happier.

Such a win/win situation is quite rare in life.

So when life gets challenging and I start to focus on myself a little bit too much, I say “May I Bring Joy to Others” and it brings me back to reality and sets me straight.

That’s why “May I Bring Joy to Others” is #3 on my daily mediation.

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