Definition of happiness: The full use of your powers along lines of excellence.
– John Fitzgerald Kennedy
Spring is in the air and so are new beginnings. We begin to awaken from the slumber energy of winter. Gardeners have begun to plant seeds for new blossoms. Annual foliage is stirring new birth of its own unique flavors and essence. Longer hours of sunlight give you the opportunity to enjoy the outdoors and fresh air, participating in sports, taking walks, enjoying outdoor cafes, building new relationships, wearing clothing that doesn’t require layers to keep warm, and perhaps being a little more adventurous.

One of the sad things that often happens at the end of summer, is all of a sudden the warm months have slithered by without participating in activities you were looking forward to enjoying. Emergencies do happen, which out of necessity have to be taken care of. Then there are situations where you are putting out fires. The downside to putting out fires either for yourself for others is you get burned out. Before long the longer hours of sunshine are shorter. Oh well, maybe next year will be the year to take sailboat lessons or attract a significant partner or take that dream vacation.

Why does it appear that those on top of the pyramid have time out to enjoy themselves? Don’t kid yourself that it came easy for them. Even if they were gifted with starter funds, they still had to learn how to keep it. It is well known that lottery winners who have not learned the disciplines of the wealthy tend to lose all their winnings.

During difficult economic times it is not uncommon for the less fortunate to look at those with wealth as the enemy. There are unscrupulous people from all walks of life – with or without money. By focusing on what someone else has or does not have is not going to contribute to anyone’s fortune. It actually brings more of what you don’t want.

Those at the top have learned the skills of self-leadership. They don’t get hooked on the drama of events where loss has created chaos and grief. They deal with their pain in a way that honors their feelings and those in their immediate circle. They then look outside of the adversity caused by the loss to see opportunities that benefit others. A parent who has lost a child in an accident grieves and through her/his tears offers life to other children by donating organs of the dear one whose life was cut short. Professionals who may have suffered losses in their business or career develop self-leadership in creating a new career path in directions that may have been unlikely in the past, but the loss has surfaced new possibilities of growth and development, which often includes hiring others as their business grows.

Self-leadership combined with leadership is critical in combining work and pleasure. These are skills that can be learned. Champions keep on learning. They see the opportunities through transitions. Effective leaders are self-aware of the principles and characteristics of influential leadership. They know how to be fully engaged in their surroundings and are proactive in their goals and success.

Here are a few questions and tips to guide you into having a fantastic spring and summer without spending a lot of money:

  • Staying within your community or neighboring communities, where are some of the places you have said you wanted to visit, but just haven’t make it a point to do it?
  • What activities can you organize with family, friends and/or neighbors to enjoy the luxury of summer?
  • There are many items on your to-do list – what items can you delegate or surrender to letting go so as to enjoy summer
  • You are naturally creative, even though you may not believe it – what craft would you like to register for in learning, especially in building something or which is an artistic endeavor?


    • Spring and summer are excellent times to smell the roses! There is much within the town you live in or nearby towns that are often overlooked or taken for granted. Make a list of those places. I certainly can see how I have passed up my nearby museums, plays, and botanic gardens these past summers. Not this year!
    • Think about taking the lead in enrolling others into renting a tour bus to take on a day trip to a local vineyard; or perhaps there is a working farm for tourists; or maybe a kite flying exhibition on a beach. These bus tours can really be fun and lunch can be potluck while enjoying the scenery.
    • Leaders teach others to lead themselves. Create a group on a social network, such as WomenCo, Facebook or LinkedIn where you can train others to leverage their strengths and develop new ones to help advance their careers and income. With my clients they have gained more confidence and happiness in awakening their inherent leadership abilities.
    • I bet you have unfinished projects that have been waiting for your attention. Stop procrastinating. Make an appointment in your calendar for an hour to pick up where you left off. If you find there is too much resistance in getting started then either delegate it or let it go! Resistance will only keep it on hold and keep you feeling guilty. Recently I let a number of my creative projects go by donating them. I accumulated more projects than I had time for. Plus it was time to move on to a new creative media. Unbeknownst to me at the time, it turned out to be writing.
    • Remember you are powerful, creative and resourceful and Anything Is Possible!

Each has his own happiness in his hands, as the artist handles the rude clay he seeks to reshape it into a figure; yet it is the same with this art as with all others: only the capacity for it is innate; the art itself must be learned and painstakingly practiced.
– Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

About the Author:

Theresa-Maria TM Napa, CPCC, LOACC Copyright 2009 Theresa-Maria Napa