Happiness Hacks

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Purposeful Living


Being created in the Divine image comes with the deep responsibility and global mission to bring the world to a higher purpose; transforming the world to be an environment befitting for G-ds presence.

With every Mitzvah, positive action and good deed we do, fusing matter with spirit, we implement this Divine vision for the universe.

Each person contributes to this in a way that nobody else can.  Each person is unique, indispensable,  absolutely necessary and granted with special qualities and distinctive responsibilities to fulfil their purpose.

The fact that G-d put you here indicates that you are needed.  Birth is G-d saying “You matter.”

As Viktor Frankl so powerfully wrote in Man’s Search for Meaning:  “Everyone has his own specific vocation or mission in life to carry out a concrete assignment that demands fulfilment.  Therein he cannot be replaced, nor can his life be repeated.  Thus, everyone’s task is as unique as his specific opportunity to implement.”

The question then is where do I fit into this grandiose picture? What is this unique mission of mine?  Where do I find it?  And how do I accomplish it?

Mission Statement

Our internal qualities such as personality, convictions, interests and even weaknesses and vices, once disciplined and channelled, are all part of our distinctive purpose to refine ourselves and the world.

Also, our opportunities, the people we know, places we visit and the various experiences that come our way - although not inherent to our nature – are integral to our purpose in life.

  • Think about your own unique qualities.  Think about the various talents you were blessed with.
  • Now think of how these qualities and talents can be used to bring meaning to your surroundings.
  • Consider the opportunities that come your way i.e. your education, financial resources, position of influence etc.  Nothing is random; all life’s journeys are an opportunity.
  • Consider the people in your life.  People have strengths and weaknesses. Who can you help through troubled times?  Who can you learn from?
  • Finally, the journey of life at times takes us to unexpected places.  We become frustrated with detours and delays.    In truth, wherever we are, whether it’s a place we would like to be on not, we are there for a purpose: to do an act of kindness or to learn something new.  Our focus should shift to what that purpose might be.


The cumulative energy of these four factors – personality, opportunities, people and places carry the secret to our purpose in life.

The Forgiveness Challenge

 For a 2 minute audio click here 

Our lives are often cluttered with all kinds of destructive memories and resentments. And if our memories ‘archive’ every time someone slights us, life becomes unbearable.

In the Jewish calendar, the month of Tishrei is a built in annual opportunity to let go of wounds that hold one back, and to move forward toward becoming the person we ought to be.

In our Yom Kippur prayers, we ask G-d to not to hold grudges against us (“G-d, do not remember our former wrongdoings”). But, in exchange, He asks us to act towards others in the same way.

Forgiveness Exercise

Some events are extremely difficult to simply forgive. So start small.

• Identify a relatively minor grudge or resentment that you’ve been carrying around with you. Think about the incident and how it made you feel. To forgive, you need to first acknowledge the reality of what happened and how you were affected.

• Next, identify the cost of holding on to it. Does it cost you energy, vitality, self-esteem, intimacy?

• Then, as hard as it may seem, consider their perspective. You may never understand why they did what they did, but taking the time to see things through their eyes can take the edge off our hurt feelings. Ask yourself: How would they explain what happened? The point isn’t to condone their behavior; it’s to better understand it from their vantage-point.

•Finally, consider your own contribution to the situation – not for the purpose of self-blame, but to better appreciate the full picture behind what happened. Often, without realising or intending it, our actions can contribute to others actions. And when we understand this, it's easier to let go.

“Forgiveness is taking back your power. Forgiveness is taking responsibility of how you feel.  Forgiveness can improve your mental and physical health.   Forgiveness is becoming a hero instead of a victim.  Forgiveness is a choice.”
- Fred Luskin, Forgive for Good

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