Don’t worry, be happy (and stop complaining)

I challenge you to check out the Tim Ferriss podcast with Tony Robbins entitled “Achievement Versus Fulfillment.” With Tony’s teachings shaping my own life since somewhere before 1998 the surprise for me was hearing a few simple, but powerful, concepts told in ways I never heard before. This story is about the second one of those gems… (read about the first one here)

Coming off his comment about when people think that being stressed out make them better — he simply says, “Bullshit.”

What would cause someone to kill men, women and children, like you know what you’ve seen happen in Paris, and what happened in Nice recently, and what’s happened obviously and in Orlando and San Bernardino — and I said I can’t tell you the kind of person that did it, but I can tell you who didn’t do it, a happy person didn’t go kill all those people. I fulfilled human being, a person a beautiful state, does not plot or try to harm anybody much less kill anybody. A person a beautiful state is not out there trying to, you know, steal from somebody else. So you know when you go on airplane and the first thing they say is if we have a problem and we lose oxygen, a mask will drop down and put it on your child first, right? No, if you put on yourself first, which seems selfish as we all want to take care of our kid first, but the reason is if you don’t take yourself you’re going to have nothing for that child and that child is going to die too. Putting yourself in a beautiful state is putting that living oxygen inside of you and then you have things to give other people. As long as you’re suffering, suffering begets more suffering. I always tell people figure out what your favorite flavor of suffering is. Are you a person that gets stressed out all the time? Is it anxiety? Is it worry? Is that anger? Is it pissed off? Do you try to please everyone? What is your favorite style of suffering and end it, because when you end that there’s a level of freedom that no amount of money will give you. No amount of love will give it to you. No amount of accolades. No amount of academy awards. None of that shit. I get the call from all those multi-billionaire clients, and from all those people the entertainment business, who’ve got everything and they are miserable. They bring you to help them with their business, or whatever it is, and I’m a Trojan horse. I give them what they want but I know what I’m really there for is to also give them what they need and to help them to find that joy and happiness.

Tony went on to say…

I always say to people, can you imagine if you’re the creator and you come here to one of your creations and you say to this person, “Joe, how do you like what created for you?,” and he says, “Jeez god, I mean it’s hot as shit here could’t you have just kept it at 78 degrees? Why did you have to change all these temperatures and made it so tough, and then you got these stupid people I got to deal with all the time they’re always getting in my way, and you know, why do I have to work for a living and plus you got these little red ants, they are tiny little ants and they bite my ass and they hurt like hell, why would you create these annoying ants?” If you are god do you want to hang out with this person? If you’re human you want to hang out with him? If you’re god you go to somebody else and say, “How’s it going?”, and the other guy says, “Hey man, god this is so incredible is the most beautiful place I could ever imagine, the sky and air, water. There’s so many different people that challenge me and help me to grow and learn, and people I can love, you’ve even created these red ants — they are so tiny I’m 1000 times their size and there so corageous they come to even bite me! It’s cool what you’ve created here.” Who do you want to hang with? So when people say they don’t have god in their life, it’s probably because you whine and bitch too much to feel god’s presence. We have got to stop the suffering.

Listening to this podcast reminded me of something I read a while back in Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain:

…start by changing his assumptions about anger. He believes, as most of us do, that venting anger lets off steam. The “catharsis hypothesis” — that aggression builds up inside us until it’s healthily released — dates back to the Greeks, was revived by Freud, and gained steam during the “let it all hang out” 1960s of punching bags and primal screams. But the catharsis hypothesis is a myth — a plausible one, an elegant one, but a myth nonetheless. Scores of studies have shown that venting doesn’t soothe anger; it fuels it.

We’re best off when we don’t allow ourselves to go to our angry place. Amazingly, neuroscientists have even found that people who use Botox, which prevents them from making angry faces, seem to be less anger-prone than those who don’t, because the very act of frowning triggers the amygdala to process negative emotions. And anger is not just damaging in the moment; for days afterward, venters have repair work to do with their partners. Despite the popular fantasy of fabulous sex after fighting, many couples say that it takes time to feel loving again.

As Tony mentioned with the oxygen on the plane analogy giving up the suffering will not only save ourselves but more importantly help save out children too. If there is an actual secret to world peace it is the gift of a happy childhood for all. Get the oxygen mask on yourself first — then help the kids in the seats next to you.

(Originally posted on Medium)