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The Art of Happiness at Work by Dalai Lama XIV
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Aug 13, 2009

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Read in August, 2009

Quotes to remember:

“He reminds us that if we can change some of the external conditions at the workplace that contribute to our dissatisfaction, we certainly should. If not, although it is not always easy or quick, it is still possible to be happy at work through reshaping our attitudes and outlook, through inner training.”

Look at a tense situation as a way to improve yourself. Stay calm and react with dignity.

“Our attitudes about money are more important than the amount we make. As always, in our pursuit of happiness, our inner resources assume a greater role than our material resources, unless of course we exist in abject poverty and are suffering from hunger or starvation.” – Choose the career you love, not where you will make the most money.

“One should not just concentrate on job or money. That’s important.”

“The principle of adaptation suggests that no matter what kind of success or good fortune we experience, or, alternatively, no matter what adversity or tragedy we encounter, sooner or later we tend to adapt to the new conditions and eventually migrate back to our customary levels of day-to-day and moment-to-moment happiness.” This is to not lose initiative. Need a balanced life.

Help others. Job vs. Career vs. Calling.

“whether we are obstructed from achieving our goals by overestimating or underestimating our abilities and skills, there is little doubt that the greater our self-understanding and self-awareness, the more our self-concept corresponds with reality, the happier we will be at work or at home.”

“So if you’re looking for work and have a choice of a job, choose a job that allows the opportunity for some creativity, and for spending time with your family. Even if it means less pay, personally I think it is better to choose work that is less demanding, that gives you greater freedom, more time to e with your family, or to do other activities, read, engage in cultural activities, or just play. I think that’s best.”

“It would seem reasonable that basing one’s identity on the essence rather than the external form would decrease the likelihood that one would be devastated by the loss of any particular role or job – after all, the essence is portable and can be transferred to any activity, any given relationship, hobby, or job.”

“If you can, serve others. If not, at least refrain from harming them.”

Now, if we sell software and may have had an unproductive day in terms of not having had a single sales, we can still have a sense of accomplishment if we have had some positive interactions with our customers or co-workers, if we’ve made their day just a little bit better. Our day is now transformed into a productive day that we can take pride in. Being of some benefit to others, may provide us with many new sources of satisfaction that can sustain our sense of price and accomplishment even during the inevitable slow periods of our career.

“Even a simple smile can have some impact on my overall state of mind. So, everything is interconnected, interdependent. When you appreciate the interconnected nature of all aspects of your life, then you will understand how various factors – such as your values, your attitudes, your emotional state – can all contribute to your sense of fulfillment at work, and to your satisfaction and happiness in life.”

Meditate – focus on breathing for 5-10 minutes. Acquire the ability to cultivate a settled mental state that you can then successfully direct to any chosen topic. In this way, you will be able to overcome many of the problems that arise simply as a results of an unfocused, undisciplined mental state.
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