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Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff. NCASFAA/SCASFAA Fall Conference 2006 November 6-9, 2006 Asheville, NC. Practice Makes Perfect. Remember that you become what you practice most Shine the flashlight on What’s Right New theory called “Appreciative Inquiry”.

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don t sweat the small stuff

Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff


Fall Conference 2006

November 6-9, 2006

Asheville, NC

practice makes perfect
Practice Makes Perfect
  • Remember that you become what you practice most
  • Shine the flashlight on What’s Right
    • New theory called “Appreciative Inquiry”

Some people are always grumbling because roses have thorns; I am thankful that thorns have roses.

--Alphouse Karr

your possessions
Your Possessions
  • Think of what you have

instead of what you want

    • A guarantee you will remain dissatisfied
      • “I’ll be happy when…”
    • Change the emphasis from what we want to what we have

“In our daily lives, we must see that it is not happiness that makes us grateful, but gratefulness that makes us happy.” –


living with yourself
Living with Yourself

Most people would rather be certain they’re miserable, than risk being happy.

-Robert Anthony

  • Understand the statement: “Wherever you go, there you are!”
      • “What are people like in California?”
      • “What are people like at home?”
  • Carry a sense of inner peace
broken glass
Broken Glass

“Blessed is he who expects nothing, for he shall never be disappointed.”

Alexander Pope

  • See the glass as already broken
    • All of life is a constant state of change
    • You should not be surprised or disappointed
    • Feel grateful for the time you had it
    • Make peace with the way things are—

“Ah, there it goes—good while it lasted”

narrow sighted view
Narrow-sighted View
  • Agree with your limitations and they are yours!
    • “I can’t do it,”
    • “I can’t help it,”
    • “I’ve always been that way!”
  • You’ll look for ways to prove your position.

When one door of happiness closes, another one opens, but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one that has been opened to us.

--Helen Keller

this time next year
This Time Next Year
  • Ask yourself the question, “Will this matter a year from now?”
  • Play time warp
  • Gives you needed perspective

I would die happy if I knew that on my tombstone could be written these words, “This man was an absolute fool. None of the disastrous things that he reluctantly predicted ever came to pass.” --Lewis Mumford

life isn t fair
Life Isn’t Fair
  • Do you expect life to be fair?
  • Surrender to the fact that life isn’t fair
  • We know it is not “life’s job” to make everything perfect. It’s our challenge.

“If all our happiness is bound up entirely in our personal circumstances, it is difficult not to demand of life mare than it has to give.” --Bertrand Russell

repeat to yourself life isn t an emergency
Repeat to Yourself, “Life Isn’t an Emergency”

“Don’t believe everything you think”

-- bumper sticker

  • Who is telling you IT is an emergency?
  • Don’t beat yourself up when you can’t meet your own self-created deadlines
  • Admit that, in most cases, you’re creating the emergency
practice random acts of kindness
Practice Random Acts of Kindness
  • It is an effective way to get in touch with the joy of giving without expecting anything in return.
  • It comes from the heart.
  • It brings you more happiness than the receiver of the gift.

Lock your house, go across the railroad tracksand find someone in need and do something for him. --Karl Menninger’s advise to a man who said he was going to have a nervous breakdown.

remember you always have choices
Remember, You Always have Choices
  • We all go around thinking we don’t have any choice
  • Either we don’t want it badly enough to pay the price, or
  • We haven’t thought creatively enough about how to get it.

If you choose not to decide—you still have made a choice.

Neil Peart

when faced with an obstacle change leave or allow with grace
When faced with an Obstacle, Change, Leave, or Allow—with Grace
  • Decide which of the three obstacles is most preferable and doable with grace.
  • These are really the only options.
  • Practice for being happy, not being right

Every day give yourself a good mental shampoo.

--Sara Jordan

set aside quiet time every day
Set Aside Quiet Time, Every Day
  • People who are considered to be inwardly peaceful carve out at least a little quiet time for themselves
    • It helps to balance the noise
  • Establish a ritual for yourself

In every part and corner of life to lose oneself is to be a gainer, to forget oneself is to be happy.

--Robert Louis Stevenson

  • Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff by Richard Carlson, Ph.D.
  • The Happiness Makeover: How to Teach Yourself to Be Happy and Enjoy Every Day by M.J. Ryan
  • Trusting Yourself by M. J. Ryan
Don’t believe everything you think-- bumper sticker
  • The decision to be happy is actually the decision to stop being unhappy. --Barry Neil Kaufman
  • One always thinks others are happy– Yiddish saying
  • Most people are not willing to let go (of grudges) until they have something more important to move on to. Jerry M. Ruhl
  • It is only possible to live happily-ever-after on a day-to-day basis.—Margaret Bonnano
  • The truth is there is no better time to be happy than right now.