Monday, 30 January 2012

Happiness Index

We have been spending half an hour every morning listening to Brahmakumari Sister Shivani on Star plus, while she talks about personal & self management and one of the key concepts she talks about is the Happiness index.

Sister Shivani is obviously a very well read computer savvy person who seems to be counselling people from the corporate and business worlds, apart from others who have come to her either when life has dealt a few blows to them or when life seems to cruise along, seemingly quite complete; yet they have felt a void or a vacuum, which worldly things like money and relationships have not been able to fill.

So the young and pleasant looking Sister Shivani's USP is the contemporary language she uses. Happiness index draws its parallels from the Sensex or other market indices which cause such ripples around the world when they go up or down. According to her, we should aim for a stable happiness index, which is not as sensitive as the Sensex and doesn't jump up and down with good and bad news or events from around us.

Since the happiness index is dependent on the quality of the thoughts we create in our mind, which in turn determine our destiny by karmic law, one of the crucial things Sister Shivani advises is a check on our operating system. Just like if your operating system on the computer is defective no program will run properly, so too we need to ensure our belief system (operating system) is compatible with our hardware and software.

For instance if I believe "My work should be appreciated" or better still- "I need to be appreciated to feel happy", the counter argument will automatically hold true as well-"If somebody is unappreciative, I become unhappy"  

Hence, the next time my boss says "We need better communication from you", when I might have been feeling like actually nobody was listening to me or my husband says- "The chicken curry was tastier the last time you made it" even though he was too busy eating it to say anything about it the last time I made it....

I need to take a deep breath, observe the tirade of explosive thoughts my mind creates in a jiffy, stop them from running amock and change my belief system. So I need to believe that "I do my job to the best of my ability because it makes me happy" "It is not necessary that people will find my work worth appreciating" "Criticism should be taken on board in a constructive manner." Wow! now doesn't that feel better already? 

Happiness comes from within and should not be dependent on external factors like people's appreciation of you or your efforts. This a belief system or operating system which is difficult to integrate into your hardware and software but it can be done. It can be done to the extent that it helps you remain stable without causing a rise in heart rate, breathing or blood pressure. Maybe if I carry on experimenting with Sister Shivani's truths I might actually manage to keep calm while dealing with the most difficult task both at home and at work- human resource management. 

Sister Shivani uses very real examples to illustrate the principles of self management and another phrase she uses a lot in her computer savvy manner is "Press the delete button"

All of us have gone through quite a few computers and laptops in our computer using lifetime and we all know how important it is to do a clean up to ensure the computer continues to work quickly and effectively. This is exactly the case with our minds. We need to press the delete button for all our past experiences which disturb us. If we accumulate clutter, it clogs the system, reduces clarity and focus, reduces performance which in turn leads to uncomfortable situations with less than optimum tasting chicken curry or miscommunications at work!

Therefore "PRESS DELETE"


Vidya said...

There are two sides to this "Delete" Button Nilanjana! If we were to always press OUR delete button, then unfortunately, in this cruel world we live in, people would take us for granted and walk all over us. It would be nice if people would press THEIR delete button, BEFORE they said or did anything that might make us reach for OUR delete button!!

How come our husbands are too busy eating the dish when it tastes good, but always find time to criticise it, when they perceive it does not taste so good??!!

brightspark said...

Press delete Vidya- creating the thought that people can or will hurt you is hurting you more than they actually do.

Husbands are a special species, one just has to learn to live with them

Vidya said...

Have pressed the delete button many times in the past and people have hurt me... Don't want to go there again!

But you are right! Husbands are a special species, which is why I know I don't have to bother with the delete button and instead use my "release" button and tell him exactly what I feel, without him holding it against me!!

Sanjay Kumar said...

I am totally agree with you Parjaiji... actually we have to develop a habit of always being happy and keep instructing to our mind that I want to be happy...

Nature Walker said...

Hi! Nilanjana!
Happiness is a 'concept'- ask n people nd you get 'n' definitions. And strangely, like "time" it is often defined in a circular manner... Time, and Happiness are- well- Time and Happiness! We all, hopefully know what we are trying to say.
An Internal LOC (Locus Of Control) is desirable but heart and mind may decide not to agree. And the first step to regaining our LOC, rightly said, is to become aware!
The Markandeya Puran says that the quality of our life is determined by the distance between Stimulus and Response. We need not REACT- too fast and too low an index!
Very well said. REally enjoyed your post.

Vasanthi said...

Very well said-a reiteration of the Hindu Philosophy that happiness comes from within, not without.

brightspark said...

Thank you both- interesting and profound thoughts

Jayanth Jayaprakash JJ said...

Nilanjana instead of delete and trashing i recommend observing the past as a spectator and reviewing...reviewing to lean where I went right or wrong and to improve and improvise...

Shaji Nair said...

Deleting will only add to ignorance about the way to learn and understand how to avoid a conflict.
Introspecting, as mentioned by JJ, will be the real way out. But all said and done, not that only one party should be doing this.