How to Avoid the Traps of Happiness

So it seems that wealthy people are just as unhappy as people without money. This may come as a comfort for poor people, but it nevertheless stop them  from becoming rich. This is because if happiness is our reason to be rich, if you now know that being rich does not bring you happiness, why would you want to be rich?  That’s why I think it is of utmost importance that people do not get any idea that happiness has got to do with your wealth. 


In fact we know that happiness is a state of your mind, and having money simply means that you have more means to buy things that make you happy, but that alone does not bring you happiness. For happiness is something to be pursued, it is not something that we can hold on to. For when we achieved what we set out to achieve, we soon get dissatisfied and are soon looking for the next thing that brings us happiness. Just look at how happy you were when you first purchased your new smartphone but how soon you realized that there are other smartphones that are better than what your and how soon you developed such unhappiness!


Other than this, the other trap of happiness is to keep on seeking pleasure, thinking that sensual pleasures will bring you happiness. Attending festivals, drinking, shopping, eating in expensive restaurants and take part in parties of course will make you happy. The problem is when you become too accustomed to these pleasures, they lose their power to make you happy. You need even more bigger pleasures to get the same or more happiness.


So it seems that happiness is a declining feeling, the more you have happiness, the more you feel unhappy.  This is what psychologists called happiness traps, for you cannot just decide to be happy any more than you can decide to be taller. Happiness is not a finite thing, but the sum of lived feelings. Happiness is thus not just being in a good mood and feeling joyous, it is a way of life, a mental attitude. The good news is anyone can avoid the traps of happiness and cultivate happiness.


The 3 easy ways to avoid the traps of happiness are:

1.     Forget about trying to be happy, just be happy now with a happy state of mind. For example, even if you were stuck in a massive traffic jam, you can choose to be happy by focusing on the moment.  Just focus on your breathing and you will instantly acquire a state of calmness and momentary happiness and forget about the ordeal of traffic jams! 

2.     Share happiness, for the more you share happiness, the more others will share happiness with you too and soon you will be happy throughout the day. To test this, try to post something that makes people feel good in your social media and see what happens.

3.     It’s the journey that brings us happiness, not the destination. So just focus on the journey and you’ll be happy. Happy journeying!


Written by Andy Ng at AsiaTrainers, a Business and Personal Coach and Trainer with over 17 years of full-time coaching experience. Contact Andy at the usual social media platforms. 



Using Art of War strategies to Lead and Manage Your Teams Successfully
Date: 30 June 2017 Friday 2 to 5.30 pm
Venue: The Plaza 02-346, 7500A Beach Rd (inside Parkroyal Hotel building)   

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Sun Tzu (or Sūn Zǐ in pinyin) was a 500 BC Chinese general, military strategist, and author of The Art of War, an immensely influential ancient Chinese book on military strategy. Many great leaders like Margaret Thatcher and Ronald Reagan study his work and became legendary leaders. Many corporate leaders paid thousands of dollars to attend courses to learn Sun Zi secrets. 
We at Asia Trainers believe that you too can learn master his secrets with just two hundred dollars. This is because we take the essence and compile them into a 4-hour course that will leave you with just enough materials to lead your team to greater heights. Since October 2010, we have trained over 1,137 leaders coming from countries including Hong Kong, Japan, Myanmar and even China. 
The most valuable lesson out of his 13 chapter of 5,000 words must be found in the 3rd chapter: Win Without Fighting. 
As translated from The Art of War: Generally, in war the best thing is to take the enemy state whole and intact; to ruin it is inferior to this. To capture the entire army is better than to destroy it. Hence, to win on hundred victories in one hundred battles is not the acme of skill.
To subdue the enemy without fighting is supreme excellence. In short, win without fighting is the best. 
How does it apply to your people management and leadership?
a Enemy here refers to not your enemy but your team that you are leading and managing. 
b. Take the enemy state whole and intact means you must lead your team wholly with not just their bodies, but also their minds, hearts and spirits. 
c. Never destroy the bodies, minds, hearts and spirits of your team. So you cannot over-work them for you will be destroying their bodies and minds. You also cannot break their hearts by not delivering on your promises and make them give up on you. Finally, you may destroy their spirits when you unknowingly make them a fool in front of others.
d. To win without fighting in leadership is to lead without your team knowing that you are leading them. A leader is at his best when people barely knows he exists, when the work is done, the team will say: we did it ourselves. This is because the leader has empowered the team so much and they have become so competent that they are mini leaders themselves, thus the leader is leading without actually leading them. This must be the highest form of leadership. Lead without Leading. 
e. If you too want to be a great leader, learn from the master.


  1. Art of War simplified and clarified
  2. How knowing Sun Tzu Art of War will help you lead and manage people
  3. Applying the Five Elements of Sun Zi (Mission, Climate, Ground, Head and Methods) to your people management and leadership now
  4. How to Know Yourself Know Others per Sun Zi
  5. Leading when People Don't Want to be led
  6. Sun Tzu 6 Strategies of War to manage and lead people happily and willingly
  7. Engaging people with the art of deception or 计
  8. Dealing with Difficult people using Sun Tzu 'Fire' strategy
  9. How to drive people to perform at their best using 36 Stratagems of 'straight' and 'odd'
  10. The Ultimate in Sun Zi: Take the entire Nation (body, mind, heart & spirit)
  1. Practical Ideas to be an effective Leader and Manager
  2. Align Entire Team to achieve Real Results
  3. Increase Productivity & Teamwork
  4. More impetus to achieve more with less
  5. Happier and more Fulfilling Life!

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