“Are You Happy?”: Keys To Happiness
by: Nicholeen Peck
“Men are that they might have joy.” Really? Is this what life is about; finding happiness? Yes. The Lord said, “For this is my work and my glory, to bring to pass the eternal life and happiness of man.” The Savior’s sacrifice was intended to bring us happiness. The gospel principles and ordinances are intended for our eternal joy. From the beginning of time, our lives were prescribed to experience happiness and sadness for our learning and benefit, and we were admonished to choose the path of happiness.
With such a grand plan for happiness, why do so many people seem so sad? Why do couples fight? Why do child pout in their rooms and roll their eyes at their parents? These behaviors are not happy. Why do people choose to do them? Continue reading
“I am a much better, calmer parent than I used to be since starting to focus on teaching myself and my children self-government, but I still have two issues I seem to constantly battle; attitude problems and whining. What do you do when the child won’t calm down, and won’t do what you tell him? How do you stop whining?”
Learning to be a better parent is just like any other learning process. We learn “line upon line; precept upon precept, here a little, there a little.” We recognize what principles we need to focus on first, and then as we improve we will see what our new parenting focus needs to be next.
The majority of people first recognize that they need to fix themselves first by being calm and in control. Next people usually see a need for increased structure at home as well as skills to teach the children so that they can have more positive parenting interactions. Finally, parents are ready to take on the big behavior problems which they initially wanted to learn self-government for, such as attitude problems and anger control issues. Continue reading
“Porter, what is that?” asked my Chinese friend Phil when he was visiting our home this last week from China.
“The moon.” replied eight year old Porter as he looked at the sky.
“In Chinese the moon has a different name.” Phil went on.
Phil told Porter the two syllable word which means moon in Chinese, but Porter struggled with the new sounds. After a minute Porter was able to reproduce the sound combinations, but something was still missing. Phil had Porter listen to him say the word again and again so that Porter could make the sounds with the correct tone. Finally, Porter said the Chinese word for moon with the proper tone, soft in one place and more abrupt in another place. From this simple vocabulary lesson, Porter learned that good communication skills require two things, the action and the tone. Continue reading
Buzz, buzz! “Why won’t the flies stop buzzing around my head?” I wondered as I sat out in the mountain shade trying to digest my new book. First one, then four, all buzzing around my head. It seemed like it was a dance for them, and it looked like a dance for me. I was waving my arms every which way trying to get the pesky insects to leave me alone. I didn’t do anything to them. Why wouldn’t then just leave me be so that I could enjoy my book?
Their obvious pleasure was my immediate frustration. I really started to get angry inside. I had such wonderful plans for a relaxing afternoon in the shade with my book, and they were ruining it. With the touch of each new fly on my head and face I felt more and more upset at the bugs. Then it hit me.
These mountain flies had no idea I was mad. They didn’t care at all. I could have yelled and screamed, but that wouldn’t have made a difference. I swatted and swung, but they kept coming back. My anger and frustration was only hurting me. Continue reading
“But, what do you do when they are screaming, and it’s time to walk out the door?” a father asked me at a recent conference. “My strong willed three year old son is very difficult at those times.”
I looked at this wonderfully dedicated father, and felt his frustration. Who hasn’t felt the anxiety build when a child has a tantrum right when you are leaving for church or leaving for work? Let’s face it, there really are no convenient times for a child to have a temper tantrum. But, when a family is leaving it is one of the most inconvenient times to deal with a tantrum. The family is soon going to be with other people and they need to be ready to properly socialize. Starting a car trip with attitude problems and frustration can create other negative interactions with the people you are about to see. Continue reading