Many years ago, upon walking into my house, I noticed that my son was very upset. I asked him what was wrong. He said, “We lost”! I asked him what he had lost.

He said his team lost the game. I immediately told him to tell me EXACTLY what it was that he lost and I would give it back to him. In this way he wouldn’t have to remain upset. He looked at me like I was being a wise guy. Well, it turned out that the High School coach of the ball team he was on, in his school, balled out the youngsters for losing the game.

I asked him if he had fun, running, hitting, catching, playing and on and on. He said, on no uncertain terms – YES! It was a lot of fun, playing. He had a great time.

My instructions to him, were “Please do not tell me, or ever believe anything about the size of number on the scoreboard having anything to do with being happy. It’s a bunch of nonsense that the bigger or larger the number should determine whether you should be happy or not. The proof is in the fact that you said you had fun and a great time playing out there, on the team, on the field”.

I then went to the High School to have a talk with this coach. I made it very clear to NEVER, NEVER lay this kind of a trip on my son, or for that matter, any person, no less, impressionable young minds. He could do that to his own children if he so wishes – not to others. I hopefully like to think that he got it.

To my son(s) I explained the weird things we use in this society, to determine if we should be happy or not. The bigger the number, the happier we should be – right? The bigger the house, the bigger the car, the bigger the income, even when it comes to our bodies. The bigger the women’s breasts, the happier they are – so much so, that there have been procedures created to make everything on the body larger. From operations to chemical injections. (We are weird and getting weirder).

Larger and more equaling happiness or unhappiness, I explained to them, should mean that the rich and famous should be the happiest people on this planet. According to this formula, that is preached by society, this should be absolutely true, beyond any doubt. Well as we all know, the rich and famous are just as happy or unhappy as the next human being. In fact it always seemed to me, that the wealthy (rich) and famous were really just the opposite of joyful and happy. To me, this is because they always seem fearful of falling from their positions and losing their wealth. Just look at our bankers and Wall Street people. They seem to keep needing more and more – evidently they aren’t secure (happy) with what they have. I cannot imagine in my wildest dreams, how they think having more and bigger possessions, will make them happy. They will even break laws and commit crimes to get more – so weird.

So I explained to my young sons, that being a ‘winner’ or ‘loser’, happy or unhappy, has nothing to do with any number or size of anything. It comes down to just simply, plain enjoying yourself and having fun, at whatever the activity is that you are doing at the time. The real winner is the one that is enjoying themselves and the loser is the one who is not.

I asked them, do you think that the person sitting on their very expensive couch is enjoying the TV show more than the person sitting on a less expensive couch is? Or going to a movie? Or enjoying the bag of chips more than the other person? Or the soda or juice they are drinking? Or just walking down the street? It’s all nonsense. Don’t believe what the media and Society is telling you what you need in order to be happy. They are just selling their wares – and buyers beware. Do not become their victim.

The trick, I explained to them, while constantly striving for their goal(s), is to keep striving for their day to day happiness, regardless of what the day has brought. That’s the real winner.

Happiness is not something you get – is something you are.

Harris Glasser – Author, Lecturer, Business & Personal Consultant “ It’s My Money & I Want It!”
(more next week)