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The Three Great Secrets of Success

by Charly Mann

There is a golden songbird that lives in my backyard. It spends most of its day singing beautiful songs. Recently a large orange tabby cat caught this bird as he was eating seeds off the ground. The little bird begged the cat to release him, and promised to tell the cat three great secrets if he would let him go. The cat immediately released the bird. The bird flew up to a branch, a safe distance from the cat, and said, "Thank you for letting me live. The three great secrets are, never believe all that you hear; never regret what you have lost, and never throw away anything that is worth keeping." The cat said that he already knew these secrets, and that he should not have let him go. My golden songbird replied that if the cat had really known these secrets he never would have let him go.

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The Joy of Nature

 

Joy in looking is nature's most beautiful gift.

Albert Einstein

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How to Control Your Faults

by Charly Mann

No matter who you are, and how hard you try to overcome them, you cannot escape the fact that you have faults. They are your defects and what make you human, but by your intelligence, you can recognize them and keep them in check. They will sometimes mar your decision making, and from time to time even make you irrational, but the more you remind yourself of them, the less they will affect your growth and your talent.

It is a weakness to ignore your faults, and can often lead one to do evil. Let your faults just be blemishes on your path to perfection, instead of warts that not only repel others from you, but tarnish your abilities, and take you down the road to ruin. 

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How To Cure Compulsive Behavior

by Charly Mann

It seems that almost everyone I know, including myself, has some obsession or behavior they cannot control despite the negative consequences associated with it. Why do we spend excessive amounts of time doing things that rarely give us much satisfaction? Experts agree that narcissistic individuals most frequently display addictive behavior. In other words, people who lack a strong feeling of self-worth develop a compulsion in order to generate a feeling of external validation. While these people may seem egotistical, they are actually emotionally empty.

In my world I see many forms of compulsive behavior, including addictions to gambling, collecting things, shopping, eating disorders, drugs, workaholism and sex. All of the people I know who exhibit these symptoms seem to have some unmet emotional need they are trying to satisfy.

Men and women manifest their compulsions differently. For example men with compulsive sexual behavior outnumber women 5 to 1. Women, on the other hand, outnumber men by the same ratio with eating disorders. And while men are likely to be obsessive in having serial unromantic sex, women are often addicted to "falling in love" with men they hardly know. Men and women both share a compulsion for collecting. My own compulsion has been collecting recorded music most of my life. This collection includes a wide variety of music over the last one hundred years, and at one time required more than 1,200 square feet of storage space just to hold my phonograph albums. Thanks to digital storage, and my commitment in recent years to only keep what I will actually listen to on a semi-regular basis, I no longer have a storage problem, but I still sometimes spend more hours on this pursuit than is reasonable or rational.

Treatment for compulsive and addictive behavior has grown rapidly in recent years. Psychiatrists often prescribe antidepressants to ease one's feelings of worthlessness and dampen compulsive drives.

I think one can start with a big dose of self-help to cure compulsive behavior. First ask yourself whether you have lost the ability to control yourself in some area of your life. If so, think long and hard about the negative consequences that from this habit. Ask yourself if there is some inner need, past hurt, or other unhappiness you are trying to overcome with your obsession. I believe most of us can control habitual bad behavior if we first admit it to ourselves, and then focus on the negative consequences of the behavior. I can say from my experience, and from that of a close friend who was addicted to gambling, that just talking about it, and committing to take radical steps to alter the problem, produces a wonderful high and inner calmness that exceeds any thrill we ever received from our compulsions. Once you face up to your addiction you will find that a life without obsession is far more satisfying than what you experienced with your addiction. In the end, fixing the problem will help instill the self-worth and validation you seek, and is likely to produce greater emotional intimacy in your personal relationships.

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How to Really Enjoy Life

 

Children have neither past nor future; they enjoy the present, which very few of us do.

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How to Never Grow Old

 

Anyone who keeps the ability to see beauty never grows old.

Frank Kafka

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Charly Mann in a Hawaiian shirt
Charly Mann

About Me

Ever since I was very young I have been intrigued with how one could live happily ever after like the characters I read about in fairy tales. As a child I noticed most of the adults I was exposed to were often anxious and angry, and only a very few seemed to be calm and happy. By the time I was a teenager I was scouring philosophy and psychology books looking for instructions on how to have a marvelous life. I also began questioning scores of adults I would encounter about their philosophy on life and what they thought one needed to do to be perfectly contented. In 1967, at the age of 17, I started a daily journal that compiled all the information I acquired that day on the subject. Today that journal includes three dozen large notebooks and more than 3,400 pages on my hard drive.

I have had a marvelous life thus far - most of it incredibly happy, healthy, and successful. Since 1968 I have also tracked how happy and successful I was in the previous year. Through the end of 2013, each year has been significantly better than the year before. I believe much of this can be attributed on what I learned and implemented in my own life about achieving good health, success, and happiness. As I mature and learn more my methodology for making my life great has changed a lot. I achieved enormous financial success before I was 25, which contributed greatly to my enjoyment of life for almost a decade, but even before I was 30 I found that there were things far more important than wealth that made my life great and I keep discovering more. I have had financial independence since I was very young, but almost all the joys and pleasure I now derive from life are free or cost very little.

On Uplifting Visions I share insights that I have gained from my own experience, observation, and a life of research on attaining happiness, health, and success.

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