"Success is a process, a quality of mind and way of being, an outgoing affirmation of life." — Alex Noble
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A popular saying suggests that when we make a living doing what we love we’ll never have to work a day in our life. What this points to is the difference between process goals and outcome goals:
In other words, we can control how we tend the garden, but we cannot control what blooms there.
When we find ourselves able to do what we love—with just the right amount of opportunities, resources, and support—it is then that we achieve The 4th Level of Happiness: AFFIRMATION
We receive positive affirmation when we are rewarded for our fascinating, inspired, and motivated actions; when we take pleasure in the simple act of being alive and making a positive impact in our world.
What we rarely talk about, though, is that we can also receive negative rewards for being frustrated, confused, and discouraged:
Negative affirmation is when we receive rewards in the form of sympathy and pity parties, and the unfortunate truth is that a victim mentality is hard to kick when misery loves company and we find ourselves sucked into the frustrating loop where we commiserate with others who are just as frustrated.
The fortunate news, though, is that we can break free from this cycle.
Moving from negative affirmation to positive affirmation is simple: We do it when we hurt enough that we have to change, when we learn enough that we want to change, and when we receive enough that we are able to change.
Jonas Cain is an instructional designer, facilitator of fascination, and purveyor of positivity—helping to initiate and manage positive change for individual, team, and community growth.