Loving self – an alternative path to happiness
The G.R.O.W.T.H. model provides a pathway to sustainable happiness that is not necessarily tied to having a partner in your life. However, the beauty of the concept is that it inevitably produces the qualities that people want to see in their life partners.
G – grounding. Get to know yourself and be more comfortable with who you are.
- You are unique. Cherish that.
- Grounding is made much easier if you have a personal relationship with your Creator.
- Accept your self worth. Do not allow past experiences and the opinion of others to snatch away the treasures that are yours.
While in the G zone, it is important to avoid the pitfalls of greed, gossiping and goofing off. Any one of these has the potential to derail your plans.
R – Respect is the cornerstone of this zone. Respect for self, for others, for time, for the environment, for God.
- Take responsibility for your actions and for how life unfolds for you. Blaming others is not a useful practice.
- Make every effort to be more responsive. Be a willing, caring soul. When the answers to your ‘What’s in it for me?’ questions are linked to benefits to accrue to someone else you know that you are on the right track.
- References play an important role in our lives. Ensure that wherever you interact with people, you will have given them every reason to present you in a favourable light.
- Reading. Reclaim several hours per week and channel them into reading worthwhile material. Keep abreast of current events, provide spiritual food for your soul and deepen your understanding of topics that are of interest to you.
- Key pitfalls to avoid in the R zone include a spirit that requires revenge. In a world that is degenerating into acceptance of the eye for an eye philosophy, people who are long-suffering and ready to forgive will be very special. Be one of those persons.
O – Open-mindedness is the cornerstone of the O zone
- Open your mind to new information. Be hungry for knowledge. Ask pertinent questions. Be inquisitive.
- Put new ideas and your cherished views to the test. Learn to distil facts.
- Pursue self-development. Get the education and training that will prepare you for the attainment of your goals.
- Anticipate and accept change.
Ugly O’s to avoid include obstinacy, over-reaction, over-dependence.
W – win or make a contribution to winning.
- Winning covers a multitude of deficiencies. The world loves winners and you too will like yourself.
- Words – and how you use them are a determinant of your success. While you use words to communicate do not ignore the role of body language in communication. Words are said to communicate less than 10% of the message that is received.
- Work – find something to do that you find rewarding and generates income.
W pitfalls include whining, wastefulness, aimless wandering.
T zone – Thankfulness. Be grateful for your blessings and respect the provider of those blessings.
- Be tactful. Show you are a person of class.
- Be able and willing to teach. This provides an immediate boost to your self-esteem.
- Manage time well.
- Master technology.
Elements in the T zone to avoid include: temper tantrums, talking down to others, truancy, tearing others down.
H – health consciousness. As we get a better understanding of how closely inter-connected mind, body and soul are, the issue of health demands attention. It has direct implication for all your aspirations. Critically, you must evaluate your current state of health at least once per year with a health care professional. Many experts believe that nutrition is at the core of all medical problems. Your health watch must also include an exercise regime. We suggest that you view your exercise period as an opportunity for bonding with others.
- When hope is lost, things fall apart. You must device mechanisms that you will use to fan the flame of hope and drive away the clouds of doom.
- Honesty is the best policy.
- Be humble. However, humility is not synonymous with weakness.
- Be helpful. The two fundamental spiritual laws are loving God with all our heart and loving our neighbour as ourselves. Once you get into that mindset your giving will never be able to keep pace with the abundance that you receive!
H pitfalls include: hiding behind others, hasty judgement, hassling others.
Don Miguel Ruiz in The Four Agreements identifies a major obstacle to loving self. He points to the prospect of self-rejection that comes from having an image of what it means to be perfect and never measuring up to that ideal. He suggests that you make and keep agreement with yourself. Tell yourself who you are, what you feel, what you believe and how to behave.
Trevor & Althea Smith
The Smiths are directors of INFOSERV INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY, an Accredited Training Organization. They have been happily married since 1972 and have been engaged in providing coaching for their 3 daughters and for groups and corporations in personal development workshop sessions, including the acclaimed “Success with People” series. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org