You opened this book, because you were curious about how you can be HAPPY or HAPPIER than what you are now.
Well let me tell you right now, DON"T BELIEVE ANYTHING I SAY just apply or do some of the exercises I recommend and IF, just if, you become happier, then start applying and using these principles EVERY DAY.
Something inside me from a very young age was telling me that I either wanted, desired, was able to, had to be, had already inside of me, THE POSSIBILITY OF BEING HAPPY.
And you too, have the same possibility of being HAPPY.
So why am I qualified to write about happiness? Well from my childhood, I started practicing being happy for no reason. I have read books, I have gone to seminars, I have studied NLP (Neurolinguistic Programming; a science of the subconscious mind) and I have practiced what I have learned. Because of the practice of these principles that I am going to describe in this book, I have been able to create happiness moment by moment even in the most difficult moments of my life.
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The Decisions You Choose, Will Determine The Life You'll Have
By Rico Ituarte
Balboa PressCopyright © 2017 Rico Ituarte
All rights reserved.
Who am I to write this book?
What kind of authority can I say I have in order for you to believe what I am about to tell you?
You probably opened this book, because you were curious about how you could be happy or happier than you are now.
Don't just believe what I say. Instead, perform some of the recommended exercises in this book. If, just if, you become happier, then apply these principles on a daily basis. Experience the results for yourself.
Early in childhood, I realized that all human beings are looking for happiness, each in their own way. A great number of us believe that when we acquire a beautiful or bigger home, we will be happy. That when we get the car of our dreams, we'll be happy. That the day we find the perfect significant other, we will be happy. Or, when we finally have babies with them or have enough money then, surely then, we will be happy. So we are always postponing our expectation for happiness in the belief that things or relationships will make us happy. Unfortunately, that day never arrives. Meanwhile, we waste our lives in search of the always evasive happiness. It never quite comes within our reach.
My background and experience on being happy is as universal as anyone's. It began in my early youth. I was born into Catholicism and my parents (who were devout) used to take me to Mass every Sunday.
For some reason, I used to faint in the middle of Mass and my father would have to take me out. Doctors never found what caused my fainting spells. They speculated I may have had a heart condition (I just turned sixty eight. I don't think it was heart condition). Some doctors said it may have been the air quality in the church due the amount of people and poor ventilation. That a lack of oxygen was the cause of my dilemma. I don't remember most of the reasons, my parents didn't tell me all of them, but it was a large enough concern for everyone to have an opinion on the matter.
My guess is that as a little boy, I was impressed with the figures and sculptures inside the church, especially with those of Jesus bathed in blood and the expression of suffering beyond the understanding of a child. The image of open wounds in his chest, the hands and feet penetrated by those big, rusted, and dirty nails full of blood coming out of his body. That vivid impression was what made me faint as a child. It was that simple.
I could not stand the pain and suffering, not from Jesus, nor from any creature. It didn't matter if it ranged from insects being smashed to owners hitting and punishing pets for what they perceived was bad behavior. So, from the beginning of my life, I noticed there was pain and pleasure. Through my Catholic upbringing, I learned about Paradise. It was the place where God had put Adam and Eve to be eternally happy and joyful. So, from a young age, I questioned myself, Why are we not happy andjoyful? What happened to the Paradise we were born into? (There are different opinions on the meaning of the words happy and joy, see the definitions and make your own analysis and meaning of the words, in the website below).
http://www.diffen.com/difference/Happiness vs Joy
I was a teen when the citizen band (CB) radio became popular. I purchased one and as many of you might know, we had nicknames to identify ourselves on the air. Well, for some reason, my subconscious mind at the age of sixteen suddenly said to me, "Your CB radio handle is: Happy." It was as if something inside me was telling me that I either wanted, desired, was able to, had to be, or had already inside of me; THE ABILITY TO BE HAPPY!
In my early twenties, I made a trip I to the south of Mexico. Cancun was in the beginning stages of its development. I was with friends and my daughter was only two years old at the time. We were using CB radios to communicate between three cars and I again used my old CB handle, "Happy". The trip was great and I remember being at the center of happiness and joy for everyone on the trip. My daughter's name is Azulinda and in Spanish, gasoline, is spelled "gasolina". The ending sounds of my daughter's name Azulinda and gasolina are very similar. She wanted to use the radio and communicated with my friends. When they asked what her handle was, we came up with, "Gasolina". The whole group had a great time and we all laughed during the trip.
So what qualifies me to write about happiness? Well, from my childhood, I started practicing being happy for no apparent reason. I've read books, gone to seminars, studied NLP (Neuro- Linguistic Programming, a science of the subconscious mind), and have practiced what I've learned. Due to the practice of the following principles described in this book, I've been able to create happiness on a moment by moment basis and even during the most difficult periods of my life.
During my sixty eight years of life, I've practiced what I've learned from a wide variety of authors. I've put into practice what they say about happiness and living in the NOW. Eckhart Tolle teaches this principle in his book, "The Power of Now."
A personal example of engaging in the practice of being happy without paying attention to any of my circumstances was this: following two ankle surgeries (one in June 2011 and the other one in February 2013) I had been in continuous pain for over two and a half years. While I was writing this in August of 2013, I was waking up every morning with searing pain in my right ankle. On the pain scale of zero to ten, I had a level eight.
Now, did I let the pain ruin my days, my nights or any moment in which I can decide my happiness? Not at all. I practice what I teach; nothing can make me unhappy. Wouldn't you like to know why? Because I choose happiness over anything else. Happiness is a choice.
Below are photos of two of the surgeries I had in June 2011 and February 2013. Maybe they can do a better job in illustrating the pain I have had for over two years. Yet, even this pain has not taken away my choice for daily happiness. In this first photo, you can see seven metal rods, --three on the back of my foot and two in each ring around my leg-- a total of seven metal rods crossing my leg from side to side and through the bones. The surgeons had to drill through the bones to put the rods in.
This next photo shows you the results of the second surgery. Here, I only had three rods crossing through the bones. However, even though there were only three, they were bigger, wider, and more painful. The red arrows in the picture point at the three bigger rods.
* Update: In August 2014, I had my fourth surgery. My ankle was replaced, and finally the pain is almost gone.
The surgery was needed due to a destruction and loss of cartilage located in the gaps where the leg and feet bones connect. Every step I took was incredibly painful because of the bones rubbing against each other. The loss of cartilage originally began after a fracture in 1998 following a motorcycle accident where I was attempting to ride a huge hill (after not having being on a motorcycle for many years). I was climbing it on a cross-country model and fell down in the middle of the attempt. The initial fall did nothing to me. However, when I tried to lift and turn the bike, my left foot slipped on the dirt and the bike fell on my right ankle. The weight of it broke the tibia and fibula bones. When the doctors performed surgery on my leg and put the bones back together, it took seven screws and a metal plate to hold the bones back. They (the doctors) warned me I could eventually develop arthrosis on the joint and it could destroy the cartilage. Well guess what? They were planting that seed into my subconscious mind, and I wound up creating that particular condition.
Even so, despite the constant physical pain, I chose happiness. This is an example of what I practice regarding the happiness choice. However, there are other types of pain, like emotional pain. Maybe you believe that emotional pain is harder to overcome.
You might not believe emotional pain can be removed by choice and that is fine. I agree with you. There are very difficult moments in life that can take happiness away from anyone.
When people tell me that there will be situations in which I will not be able to choose happiness, I usually tell them my personal story. It relates to individuals, who have either gone through or will go through difficulties of losing a loved one. To most, those moments appear to be insurmountable and filled with pain. In contrast and with time, most of us can dilute the pain.
I mean moments like when a loved one had passed on. In this case I will talk about when my mother (who I loved dearly) passed away. She died in my arms. I have to recognize that in that exact moment I experienced a pain that is not physical, but profound in the heart of the soul. After a few minutes passed, I called my siblings and told them what just happened. Our mother had passed. Each of our reactions was different. We chose to feel differently from each other and while it was the same event, there were three distinct reactions to this event. The "event" was that my mother died.
My perception of my sister's feelings, was something like this: "It was better for her. It was her time." And then she cried. My younger brother didn't want to come to the hospital and I still don't know his feelings. He was probably upset and because he didn't show up, I have no idea of what his reaction was or the kind of pain he was suffering. I know that he was likely who felt more attached to her.
Following my sister's arrival to the hospital where my mother died, the doctor came into the room and asked us who would take care of the funeral. Since I was the oldest, I volunteered. I immediately left the room and started making calls to funeral homes and negotiate prices for services and casket. I had to take care of the funeral arrangements. I went out of my pain and took care of the details and all legal arrangements needed. I gave orders and faced the issues head on. It also included contacting the newspaper, family members, and looking for the things that needed to be taken care of. I was busy in giving orders and making constant decisions. In a moment of pause while I was on the telephone, I realized I was not feeling any kind of pain. None physically and none in my soul.
I realized that when I was present, and in the moment, I didn't feel pain. I was dealing with what the now needed. My attention was entirely focused on the negotiation of a funeral. I realized that as soon as I went into the past and remembered the moment of my mother dying, the pain came back, and don't get me wrong, I went back to that moment several times in the future months ... crying in the middle of showering, at moments where nobody could see. I realize now, that the pain was present when I was thinking in the past. As soon as I had a problem to deal with; the pain disappeared and I was in the moment, the now again.
Pain and suffering can only exist in the past or future, but never in the present. Any pain occurring in the now flows into the past immediately. Within the next second, it's already in the past. I remembered having read a book from Eckhart Tolle, The Power of Now, and in that moment it clicked. Eckhart Tolle is right; by me dealing with the business of the funeral, I was living in the now and had no pain. As soon as I finished the negotiations and went back to the room where my mother was lying, I brought back the moment of her death. As soon as I did that, the pain came back. She had died just a few minutes ago. However, I had relinquished my pain by being in the now during my negotiations with the funeral home. I had studied Neuro-linguistic Programming previously and remembered a statement in NLP that says: "For the Subconscious Mind to actually 'experience' an event or to 'think' about an event that has already happened is exactly the same". "To think or to do, is the same for the subconscious mind."
So, I decided to change my perspective regarding my mother's passing. I chose to see the positive side of the event and reframed the situation; I chose to be happy.
I was happy. I was happy for her. She no longer had to suffer and that made me happy. As you can see, the same event can bring different feelings and emotions. It is always about how I choose to feel after any event in my life. Do I mean to say it was easy to feel happy? Well, not at the beginning. Even so, I progressed from sadness to happiness in a short period and with time and practice, the sadness was reduced further and further.
I believed we could choose to feel happy at any moment. When that belief was tested at my mother's passing, it became the perfect opportunity to prove my thinking and I did. I felt happy even though my mother died. I thought of all the positive outcomes resulting from her death. For example, I realized she no longer suffered. I realized she will not have to live with the possibility of never speaking again (the doctor had removed her vocal cords in surgery) because she always spoke the truth and she would no longer be able to speak. So, I continued searching for every imaginable positive outcome resulting from her death. I was then able to transform my pain into happiness, not only for me, but also for her.
The issue at hand, is that most people don't live in the now. They live in the past or future. They worry about what could happen and it doesn't seem to let them be happy. They grieve or are upset about things in the past (which they can't change) and keep dwelling on those awful events. This does not allow them to be happy now. How do you want to live? Happy or unhappy? Being worried for a future that hasn't happened? Or remembering and re-living bad moments from your past with regrets or things someone did to you. All these things, cannot be changed by you.
There are things from your past that likely marked you for life. The mark is created by your ego. It is unable to forgive. It is the ego that always blames other people for what happened. If I was truly a victim in a particular event, the only way to remove that pain from the past is to forgive. Forgiveness is not for the other person involved in the event. Forgiveness works because it frees your mind and your subconscious to help you stop re-living the event. So, don't forgive the person or persons who wronged you for their sake. Forgive them for your own sake. If those people are no longer alive, you can write them letter expressing you forgive them and they no longer hold a weight on you. Then, when you finish forgiving them in writing, put that letter in an envelope and burn it. Send the smoke to those involved in the forgiveness. Remember, you are not doing the act of forgiveness for them, you are doing it for your own benefit.
There are those who have told me the cause of their suffering is because of someone's actions against them. One friend said she was really upset because her significant other had cheated on her with a younger woman. My friend was unhappy and suffering for years by remembering what he did to her. However, I asked her one day, if she knew how he was doing? She replied, "He is very happy with that woman. As a matter of fact, he is traveling to Europe right now with her and enjoying life."
I told her, "Can't you see? He is happy, because he forgot about you and is living the present. You on the other hand, you are living and re-living the past, suffering and unhappy. He doesn't even know you're suffering." And I asked her, "Does it make sense for you to live in the past and suffer? Do as he does, live the present, forgive him. Your being upset and angry at him, does not affect him at all, it only affects you. Stop being angry and forgive him. Start living in the present".
It is called present because is a gift of life, and you are not accepting your gift. You are living in the past, suffering by choice. I asked her, "Do you really think that by being unhappy, he will suffer?" She answered "no" to my question. She knew he was happy and her suffering would not affect him at all. From that day on, she decided to forgive him and started living in the now.
Excerpted from Choosing Happiness by Rico Ituarte. Copyright © 2017 Rico Ituarte. Excerpted by permission of Balboa Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Table of Contents
ContentsChapter 1 Why Me?, 1,
Chapter 2 HDAV Cause-Effect, 15,
Chapter 3 Nothing happens until something moves, 31,
Chapter 4 Being HAPPY just because, 36,
Chapter 5 The power of a SMILE, 38,
Chapter 6 Formulas that help the habit for Happiness Creation, 47,
Chapter 7 Eden, the promised Paradise, 56,
Chapter 8 The importance of the words I AM, 64,
Chapter 9 Working on your happiness with a Mirror, 71,
Chapter 10 Just "DO IT", 75,
Chapter 11 Easy to do, easy not to do, 79,
About the Author, 107,
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Loved this book! Definitely worth reading