Measuring Happiness

sunglasses Is there a broader or more open-ended question posed than “Are you happy”? I believe the only person who is uniquely qualified to answer that query is the one to whom it is being asked. Likewise they are the best candidates in deciding which measuring sticks should be used.

We all long for happiness but how many  know what truly creates it within? When was the last time you thought about your own happiness or even what makes you happy. Contemplating our own happiness and acquiring it ought to add up at least to a measurable amount of our time.

Most anyone who is asked if money brings happiness will typically answer with the obligatory “no” yet it continues to be emphasized at every level. Is that because in some ways…… it is a very tangible way of measuring success?

I am looking forward to your thoughts.

Five-Star Review!

Publication1The first review for “Shame On Me” came in today and it received 5-Stars! Darin Godby with Reader’s Favorite was the reviewer; his remarks are below. is a great source for all types of books and reviews.

Author John Dunia in Shame on Me: Healing a Life of Shame-Based Thinking helps the reader to better understand how shame can attach itself to them and bring heartache. Author Dunia believes, “…that shame is the foundation of our individual problems as well as difficulties with our interactions with people.” He also indicates that knowledge is the first step in overcoming shame.

One of the greatest statements the author makes is: “Having the desire to improve one’s self is initially an important step, but if the old way of thinking remains a part of who we are, it may very well remain to entangle and entrap us into making choices that will ultimately nullify most, if not all, of the progress we will make.” Behaviors as well as our thinking must change if we are to find healing within. Being raised in a Christian home and dealing with shame vs beliefs is also something that many individuals must deal with, causing confusion and frustration. While shame causes various emotions to be uncovered, if one blames others and/or situations then they will never improve beyond their present point.

Moving past shame isn’t something that one can do quickly; rather it is a daily activity that requires persistence, patience and faith to arrive at the desired location of peace and healing. This book is filled with insightful information concerning both the life of the author as well as how the reader can become a stronger, more inspiring individual. This is an encouraging book filled with very helpful suggestions and insights.

The Pursuit Of Happiness


Artwork by Yoko Yamamoto

Is there anything we want more out of life than happiness? What truly brings us it and what is actually being pursued? There must be some sort of “yardstick” otherwise, how will we know when it is achieved?

Success is not always the answer and we all know that it is not obtained with money but it stands to reason that there has to be something by which it can be measured. Please feel free to put your answers in the comments below. Your thoughts may create insights for others. Thank you.

Today’s picture is by Yoko Yamamoto. She is days away from releasing her first book. I am thrilled to feature her work. More information is available on LinkedIn or at . I am honored to display her art and there will be more. Thank you Yoko.

Does Everything Happen For a Reason?

Globe in handLife must have a purpose, right? We couldn’t have happened to collide here all at once. There is  comfort in knowing that some sort of cosmic order exists. But if EVERYTHING happens for a reason, we run the risk of overthinking each event. Was there some lesson I missed or deed which went undone?

On the other hand, if things don’t happen for a reason then why don’t we live life with a “me first” attitude and be in a constant state of pleasure-seeking? We only live once so let’s take advantage of that starting right now!

Most of the comments agreed with yes, everything does happen for a reason. There was only one which said no however, I would like to propose a third answer and that is It doesn’t really matter.

What does that suppose to mean? Frankly it’s not important if it does or doesn’t happen for a reason. That point can be argued from here to eternity and the only proof is whether or not you believe it. What is important is how you move forward from that event. The lessons learned help us become healthier or more positive individuals. The value in life comes from being kind and having good intention. We are not kind because of some reason and we don’t expect anything in return for having good intention.

If your beliefs tell you that everything does happen for a reason, that is all the proof you need. The truths which you learn are true to you. No one can change your truth. I am simply suggesting that you not focus on the why but what occurred and how can things be better.. That is how we grow.

I’ll be having more thought-provoking questions soon. Thank you and I would enjoy hearing your thoughts.

Everything Happens For a Reason (or does it?)

LightningHave you ever wondered when someone repeats an often-quoted phrase, “Is that really true”?

Life surrounds us with contradictions then we are forced to decipher what is the truth. In one breath, it tells us to be independent thinkers and the very next thing we are bombarded with supposed “inspirational sayings” that too often interpreted as the gospel truth. There is nothing wrong in questioning any statement. You might even discover that its reflection only emboldened your belief in its veracity.

The esteemed statement, “Everything happens for a reason” was one to which I I frequently subscribed until a particularly memorable therapy session. I was recalling a particularly tough challenge and conveyed to my therapist that it must have happened for a reason. Suddenly I was interrupted by my therapist exclaiming, Does it, John?”  He challenged me to rethink that statement and ask myself is it really true.

I ask you the same question; Does everything – or for that matter, anything – happen for a reason? I would love to hear your thoughts. Please post them below. In a couple of days, I’ll be returning with mine. Thank you.

One Bad Apple

AppleDoes one bad apple really spoil the bunch? We often hear sayings and catch phrases then assume they are true without question. Start challenging the norm and consider the possibility it may not be so. Upon closer consideration, if things remain true, no harm done. However our limitations are often self-imposed.

In nature, one bad apple does have an effect on the rest of the bunch but look in the mirror; you are human. You have the choice to accept negativity or be the exception. Others can contribute to your attitude but YOU ultimately make the choice.

Here is a Haiku I wrote that inspired this post.

Will the apple spoil

While among the unripened?

Choose wisely, Sweet Fruit.

A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to…..

Problem solvingWe all learn to think negative things about ourselves. Sometimes it is a defense mechanism from terrible events that happen to us as a child. Other times, we may try to make light of the tragic situation by joking about it. Nearly every well-known comedian learned to deal with childhood difficulties in this way.

One day, during an interview with a famous comic, he was asked if his comedy ever helped him work through his issues and resolve the problem. He wasn’t sure if it would ever be answered.  Becoming famous didn’t relieve the pain but I believe what the money does is make it a more palatable distraction.

The book, “Shame On Me”- Healing a Life of Shame-Based Thinking, looks closely at these questions and offers solutions on how we can get a better understanding of who we are. Please check out for more. Thank you.