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10 Reminders That Some People Are Happier with Less than What You Have

10 Reminders That Some People Are Happier with Less than What You Have

Usually when we find ourselves struggling and going through difficult times, we tend to focus mainly on the negative sides of our own life. In order to become happy again, we have to shift the focus back and see all the great (and little) things that are going on around us. Sometimes it helps to realize that there are some people out there who are going through even more challenging times in their lives while having even more limitations, and yet, they find ways to live a life full of joy and happiness. Look around and find somebody who is happier with less than what you have and learn to appreciate all the little things again!

1. Someone is happy to be single.

Breakups are tough—we all know that! The feelings of losing a loved one is terrifying and a lot of people then start to worry about ever finding a great match ever again. The feeling of being single again sucks. Whenever you are worrying about being alone, and you just desperately feel like you need somebody else for a fulfilling life, it might be a sign to shift your focus again!

There are people out there who really enjoy being single! Just embrace the fact that you can use this time to “find yourself”. And although this might sound cheesy, take a moment and really evaluate that thought. You can go to new places and go for new experiences without worrying about anything or making compromises for a while.

A lot of people out there have never really been single for a long period in their life, and you should not miss out on this invaluable opportunity. These people have not invested enough time into themselves to even be able to live a healthy relationship  They do not know what makes THEM happy. How could you attract and be part of a great relationship when the relationship with yourself is not flourishing in the first place?

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Don’t go into a relationship with a half-empty glass. Use this time to go for crazy adventures and experiences. Live wild! Find out what excites you! Find what you love to do and THEN look for somebody to share it with!

2. Someone is suffering from a serious illness.

There are stories of people out there who suffer from serious illnesses and yet keep a happy face. It seems that in the face of death/illness you begin to reevaluate what is important in your life. You begin to be thankful for the things you DO have going for your life and you value human connection and bonding more again. Maybe you should also learn from these examples and appreciate the fact that there are people caring about you, wishing you only the best. In the end these are the most important things in life anyway.

3. Someone is not having all his limbs.

Nick Vujicic was born with no arms and no legs. Still he fully enjoys his life. He travels the world, publicly speaks to thousands of people and inspires endless amount of souls by giving them hope when they’ve lost it. Doesn’t his story alone put all your petty problems into perspective? Doesn’t this convince you how you can achieve more with even less? It does for me!

4. Someone is failing even bigger than you.

Steve Jobs got fired from his own company and fell into a severe depression right after that. If you think you have been failing big time, think about how it would feel to spend years of your life to build a huge number one company, and then see it taken away from you by the very same people whom you build it up with.

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Although this might sound sad and depressing you also have to think about what Steve Jobs said about this situation AFTERWARDS (see Steve Jobs’ 2005 Stanford Commencement Address at 6:00). He ended up really enjoying the new limitless environment he found himself in. He could start anew and be creative without boundaries again. From this “big failure,” great new projects came to life. In the time Steve Jobs got fired from Apple, he started a new computer company called NeXt and also created Pixar (Toy Story 1995)! And he even got rehired at Apple too. So I guess good things CAN come out of situation which might look helpless in the first place. Maybe your challenging situation is one of these too!

5. Someone lost more money than you have.

Walt Disney wasn’t always known for Mickey Mouse and happy places. Walt Disney once had a ill-performing film studio that sounded like a joke-telling telegram company. When the mogul first started out in the Hollywood/cartoon business, he was pretty terrible. Disney originally created the “Laugh-O-Gram” corporation in Kansas City, Missouri that was forced to file for bankruptcy after just two years due to investors pulling out of the company.

By the end, Disney himself was suffering because of the company so he to start anew in California. And Walt Disney is just one case of famous (and successful) people who lost a lot of money on their path to success. The key is that they kept going and you should too! 

6. Someone is making less money than you.

There will always be people making more money than you do. Period. But it is not about how much money you make; it is about how you use the money you have. There is a difference between having resources and being resourceful. You might think you need more money to feel happy about yourself, but I guess you are just not using the money you have effectively enough.

There are people out there making less money than you do and still manage to live a full and abundant lifestyle. There are endless possibilities out there, but oftentimes, we tend not to see them. Sometimes we simply need to shift our focus and look at the problem from another angle. Instead of owning a costly Ferrari (if you wish to do that), why not rent one for certain weekends?

Instead of trying to make more money to travel more, why don’t you cut down on your expenses and responsibilities, or even move to another country where the conditions are more in your favor? Oftentimes we forget that the things we think we need are more than often just self-made boundaries we put in our own way. It’s less about having and owning things, and more about experiencing and living life! Be creative and doors will open!

7. Someone is not working his dream job.

Happiness is not about working your dream job! It is about aligning your daily actions with the vision you have in your mind. There are a lot of people out there who work a “bad” job and still are proud and happy about it. They put in a lot of effort and even over-deliver and love everything about it. Because oftentimes, not only is WHAT you do important, but furthermore, HOW you do it, which determines your overall happiness. These people learned to love every step that is necessary to get them to their greater vision in mind.

If living their dream requires them to sit during their off-time in an office job for some months, these people are willing to do it and they even love to do it, because they know that it brings them closer where they want to be. They might learn new skills they can use in the future. Or they might even learn some spiritual lessons, like accepting their current life situation and not resisting it, so they can experience more inner peace. Or they just do it for the sake of doing it, so they can put a little bit of money away each month. The saved money will then allow them to take the leap in 1–2 years from now. Either way it serves a purpose!

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8. Someone has no idea who his parents are.

You might not like your parents from time to time. You don’t feel aligned with their world view or how they handle certain things. Sometimes, you may also wish they would just disappear.

But there are people out there who have no idea who their parents are. They grew up alone and without support, safety and guidance. So your parents telling you how you should live your life might be a curse for you, but somebody else would have loved to feel some kind of connection and parental support! They would have loved to be able to go to somebody and get some elderly advice.

Sometimes, parents tend to be a little bit too “protective” with their advice though. They want you to do what they think is best for you. But the cool thing is: you don’t have to. Just appreciate the fact that they try to do whatever they can to make you happy. Sometimes they cannot express it in a way that is helpful for you or even appropriate. Sometimes what they think is good for you might not match your idea of living a happy life. Just be thankful that they care about you, love them and then do your own thing!

9. Someone cannot afford going to school.

You might tell yourself that school sucks. But there are a lot of people out there who would LOVE to be able to get the education you are getting there. You might feel like it is a waste of time, but for a lot of people, it would be a blessing. You might feel like it is boring to learn new things, but some people might get a rush out of exploring new things and learning new stuff. Maybe you can awaken your inner explorer again and feel the happiness which comes from learning something new!

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10. Someone has no WIFI.

Be happy you got today’s WIFI password! Not everybody else has!:)

Featured photo credit: savannchan via flickr.com

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Published on September 23, 2020

6 Effective Negotiation Skills to Master

6 Effective Negotiation Skills to Master

I don’t know about you, but many times when I hear the word negotiate I think of lawyers working out a business deal or having to do battle with a car salesman to try to get a lower price. Since I am in recruiting, the term “negotiation” comes up when someone is attempting to get a higher compensation package.

If we think about it, we tend to negotiate almost every day in a wide variety of things we do. Getting a handle on the important negotiation skills can be incredibly beneficial in many parts of our lives. Let’s take a look at 6 effective negotiation skills to master.

What is Negotiation?

First, let’s take a look at what negotiation is. Put simply, negotiation is a method by which people settle their differences. It is a process in which compromise or agreement can be reached without argument or dispute.

Anytime two people or sides disagree on something, they are almost always looking for the best possible outcome for their side. This could be from an individual’s perspective or someone representing an organization.

In reality, it’s rare that one side gets everything they want and the other side gets nothing that they are seeking. Seeking to reach a common ground of sorts where both sides feel like they are getting most of what they want is the key to being successful and maintaining the relationship.

Places We Negotiate

I’ve mentioned that we negotiate in just about all phases of our life. For those of you who are shaking your head no, I invite you to think about the following:

1. Work/Business

This one is the most obvious and it’s what naturally comes to mind when we think of the word “negotiate”.

When you first started at your current job, you might have asked for a higher salary. It could be that you delivered a huge new client to your company and used this as leverage in your most recent evaluation for more compensation. If you work with vendors (and just about every company does), maybe you worked them to a lower price or better contract terms.

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In recruiting, I negotiate with candidates and hiring managers all the time to land the best talent I can find. It’s very common to accept additional work with the (sometimes spoken, sometimes unspoken) agreement that it will benefit your career in the future.

Recently, I took over a project that was my boss was working on so that I would be able to attend a conference later in the year. And so it goes, we do this all day long at work.

2. Personal

I don’t know about you, but I negotiate with my spouse all the time. I’ll cook dinner with the understanding that she does the dishes. Who wants to mow the lawn and who wants to vacuum and dust the house?

I think we should save 10% for retirement, but she thinks 5% is plenty. Therefore, we save 8%. And don’t even get me started with my kids. My older daughter can borrow my car as soon as she finishes her chores. My younger daughter can go hang out with her friends when her homework is done.

Then, there are all those interactions in our personal lives outside our homes. The carpenter wants to charge me $12,000 to build a new deck. I think $10,000 is plenty so we agree on $11,000. I ask my neighbor if I can borrow his snowblower in the winter if I invite him over the next time I grill steak. And so on.

3. Ourselves

You didn’t expect this one, did you? We negotiate with ourselves all day long.

I’ll make sure I don’t skip my workout tomorrow since I’m going to have that extra piece of pizza. My spouse has been quiet the last few days, is it worth me asking her about, or should I leave it alone? I think the car place charged me for some repairs that weren’t needed, should I say something or just let it go? I know my friend has been having some personal challenges, should I check in with him? We’ve been friends for a long time, I’m sure he’d come to me if he needed help. I’ve got the #4 pick in this year’s Fantasy Football draft, should I choose a running back or a wide receiver?

Think about that non-stop voice inside your head. It always seems to be chattering away about something and many times, it’s us negotiating with ourselves. I’ll finish up that report that the boss needs before I turn on the football game.

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Why Negotiation Skills Are So Important

Put simply, negotiation skills are important because we all interact with other people, and not only other people but other organizations and groups of people as well.

We all rarely want the same thing or outcome. Most of the time a vendor is looking at getting you to pay a higher price for something than you want to spend. Therefore, it’s important to negotiate to some middle ground that works well for both sides.

My wife and I disagree on how much to save for retirement. If we weren’t married it wouldn’t be an issue. We’d each contribute how much we wanted to on our retirement funds. We choose to be married, so we have to come to some agreement that we both feel comfortable with. We have to compromise. Therefore, we have to negotiate.

If we each lived on a planet by ourselves, we would be free to do just about anything we wanted to. We wouldn’t have to compromise with anyone because we wouldn’t interact with anyone. We would make every choice unilaterally the way we wanted to.

As we all know, this isn’t how things are. We are constantly interacting with other people and organizations, each one with their own agenda’s, viewpoints, and opinions. Therefore, we have to be able to work together.

6 Negotiation Skills to Master

Having strong negotiation skills helps us create win-win situations with others, allowing us to get most of what we want in conjunction with others around us.

Now, let’s look at 6 effective negotiation skills to master.

1. Preparation

Preparation is a key place to start with when getting ready to negotiate. Being prepared means having a clear vision of what you want and how you’d go about achieving it. It means knowing what the end goal looks like and also what you are willing to give to get it.

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It also means knowing who you are negotiating with and what areas they might be willing to compromise on. You should also know what your “bottom line” is. By “bottom line” I mean what is the most you are willing to give up to get what you want.

For instance, several years ago, I decided it was time to get a newer car. I say newer because I wanted a “new to me” car, not a brand new car. I did my research and figured out what type of car I wanted. I decided on what must-have items on the car I wanted, the highest amount of miles that would already be on it, the colors I was willing to get it in, and the highest amount of money I was willing to pay.

After visiting numerous car dealerships I was able to negotiate buying a car. I knew what I was willing to give up (amount of money) and what I was willing to accept, things like the color, amount of miles, etc. I came prepared. This is critical.

2. Clear Communication

The next key skill you need to be an effective negotiator is clear communication. You have to be able to clearly articulate what you want to the other party. This means both clear verbal and written communication.

If you can’t clearly tell the other person what you want, how do you expect to get it? Have you ever worked through something with a vendor or someone else only to learn of a surprise right at the end that wasn’t talked about before? This is not what you would call clear communication. It’s essential to be able to share a coherent and logical vision with the person you are working with.

3. Active Listening

Let’s do a quick review of active listening. This is when you are completely focused on the speaker, understand their message, comprehend the information, and respond appropriately. This is a necessary ingredient to be able to negotiate successfully. You must be able to fully focus on the other person’s wants to completely understand them.

If you aren’t giving them your full attention, you may miss some major points or details. This leads to frustration down the road on both sides. Ensure you are employing your active listening skills when in arbitration mode.

4. Teamwork and Collaboration

To be able to get to a place of common ground and a win-win scenario, you have to have a sense of teamwork and collaboration.

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If you are only thinking about yourself and what you want without giving much care to what the other person is wanting, you are bound to wind up without a solution. The other person may get frustrated and give up if they see you are unwilling to meet them halfway or care little for what they want.

When you collaborate, you are working together to help each other get what is most important to you. The other upside to negotiating with a sense of teamwork and collaboration is that it helps create a sense of trust, which, in turn, helps provide positive energy for working to a successful conclusion.

5. Problem Solving

Problem-solving is another key negotiation skill. When you are working with the other person to get the deal done many times you’ll face new challenges along the way.

Maybe you want a new vendor to provide training on the software they are selling you but they say it’s going to cost an additional $20,000 to provide this service. If you don’t have the additional $20,000 in the budget to spend on the software but you feel the training is critical, how are you going to solve that problem?

From what I’ve seen, most vendors aren’t willing to provide additional services without getting paid for them. This is where problem-solving skills will help continue the discussions. You might suggest to the vendor that your company will also be looking to replace their financial software next year, and you’d be happy to ensure they get one of the first seats at the table when the time comes if they could perhaps lower the pricing on their training.

There’s a solution to most challenges, but it takes problem-solving skills to work through them effectively.

6. Decision-Making Ability

Finally, having strong decision-making ability will help you seal the deal when you get to a place where everyone feels like they are getting what works for them. Each step of the way you can cross off the list when you get what you are looking for and decide to move onto the next item. Then, once you have all of your must-have boxes checked and the other side feels good about things, it’s time to shake hands and sign on the dotted line. Powerful decision-making ability will help you get to the finish line together.

Conclusion

There you have it, 6 effective negotiation skills to master to lead a more fulfilling life. Once we realize that we negotiate in one form or another almost every day in every phase of our lives, we realize how critical a skill it is.

Possessing strong negotiation skills will help you in nearly every one of your relationships at both the workplace and in your personal life. If you feel your arbitration tools could use some sharpening, try some of the 6 effective negotiation skills to master that we’ve talked about.

More Tips to Improve Your Negotiation Skills

Featured photo credit: Windows via unsplash.com

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