3 Ideas for Change: Set Yourself Up for Happiness


The year was 1971 and I had just caught the “Big Fish.” It was a ling cod, and a huge catch for my six-year old arms, legs and head to wrap around. I remember working like a 10-year old (at least!) to land the fish from the sea, to the boat, to our table later that night.

That day, all those years ago in 1971, began the prep for the work it takes to make the change happen, that is:

1. Dream It
2. See It
3. Act on It
4. Receive It

In 2013, as an interventionist and change expert who helps families get the catch in the boat, to make the miracle happen, I keep coming back to these pertinent ideas:

Mine Your Intelligence Quotient (IQ)
What you know doesn’t help you unless you use it in useful ways. For years, I smoked in spite of what I knew. I was addicted and all my head knowledge did nothing against interrupting the addiction. That’s what we do with so much of what we know. Something (an event, trauma, a relationship, learned habit or routine) dictates how we use what we know in self-defeating ways.

You know what you know, and the way you use it is determined by the patterns and routines you live by. You’ve practiced living life for so long, that moving outside that well-worn groove is tough stuff. Begin by asking yourself these questions:

● What’s the first thing you learned?
● What’s the last thing you learned?
● What’s the worst thing you learned?
● What’s the best thing you learned?

Break down how you practice what you know, and how you know what you practice.

Personal truth is not just about identifying shortcomings, but more importantly, about our successes, our strengths, our wisdom and accomplishments. In truth we investigate who we believe we are, and what is possible beyond those beliefs.

Regulate Your Emotional Quality (EQ)
The talent of “feeling” right can be learned, reworked and refined. One can even medicate it, but a bum mood doesn’t serve your greater good unless it’s based on real data rather than old hurts + ancient beliefs. To this end, in the work to land accurate emotions as they occur, identify:

Who installed your emotional buttons
How the buttons work
Who controls those buttons today

Allow your Emotional Self to support your Divine Self. The energy of who we are, the passion, the creativity, the brilliance are all tools to use in service to ourselves and to others. Channel your deepest (accurate) feelings into the most constructive opportunities in life – beyond the pains, thoughts and behaviors of the past. If you are religious or spiritual, add those ideas into the equation to craft a new way of doing things.

When the spirit of life is alive within our hearts and minds, we are free to creatively express our goodness.

Enable Your Mental Equivalent (MeQ)
This is your “Big Fish.” If your life is a struggle, that’s what your mental equivalent is stuck in. Our Mental Equivalent dictates how good we can get, or how deep we are stuck. Your Mental Equivalent attracts the size, sort and struggle to land the fish.

Whatever you hold as your mental picture of normal, the equivalent of that belief is what appears as your life. If you live in “I’m not good enough” then your thoughts, beliefs and behavior demonstrate failure and inadequacy.

Flip the switch! Begin telling yourself you are good enough – you are more than delicious, and as the words become habit and start to push out old thoughts of lack and failure, success and feel-good moments begin to find their way in to your new Mental Equivalent.

What if we changed our minds about what is possible? How good can you get? Might you land the “Big Fish”? Might the miracle make it into your boat?

How much good are you willing to accept? Are you willing to continue to expand that belief and accept that greater yet to be? I think you are.