1. LOVE YOURSELF – It is the nucleus for all motivation. A good place to begin is your physical appearance. Improving it will do a great deal to raise your self esteem.

2. SEEK THE LOVING LIFE – People think love is important for happiness and not only romantic love. When you can focus your attention on others, you feel better about yourself.

3. JOIN THE WORK WORLD – Despite constant complaining, people feel work is essential to happiness. They don’t work for money only – consider volunteer work. Working and accomplishing tasks makes you feel good about yourself.

4. ENJOY THE POWER OF TOUCH – Touching helps to affirm friendship, approval, caring, etc. People put up a lot of barriers to touching and equate it to either sex or violence. We too often avoid the simple acts of touching such as pats on the back, heartfelt handshakes, cordial hugs – that confirm good will.

5. LIVE ONE DAY AT A TIME – Many of us spend much of our “today” worrying about yesterday or tomorrow. Since the past won’t change and the future may never come, forget them and enjoy the day – everyday!

6. TURN ON THE LAUGHTER – Humor is a free ride toward happiness. It can take the sting out of failure and stupidities. It can help us overcome the worst of our experiences. We “look back and laugh” – start looking for the laughs now!

7. MOVE YOUR MUSCLES – Exercise can increase self esteem, relieve anxiety, improve attentiveness, dissipate stress, and elevate moods. Active people seem to be happier.

8. SEARCH FOR MEANING – Develop a set of “guiding principles,” a “belief system,” that will help you to make sense of your life. What holds real meaning for you and what directions can you take to reach these goals?

9. TAKE TIME TO WASTE TIME – Leisure is a “waste of time” that allows you to lose yourself in pleasure and celebration. It’s a way to deal with stress, increase productivity, and enhance contentment. Games, hobbies, play, etc. are all leisure activities that can help you to “waste time.”

10. GIVE TO OTHERS – Altruism can increase happiness. Being concerned about others puts you in contact with others. This type of contact will improve your outlook on life and yourself!

Please call my office if we can be of service.

To view the complete NFS Retirement Readings Newsletter for July 2012, click here.