VOY Inspire! - Happiness And A Ninja (Part 2)

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Unitika Schlawenger
Inscrit le 19 juin 2014
  • 49 Articles
  • Age 22

In this big, ever-growing complex world of ours, it’s sometimes quite hard to find the right definitions to simple words as happiness or other emotions and feelings.

Perhaps the only way to get through the hustle and bustles of life is to pursue true happiness. To wake up every day, willing only positive vibes and building the attitude to simply, stay happy no matter whatever evil or bad karma comes your way.

Easily said, but indeed very hard to practice.

But believe it or not, whether you see it as a job occupation or just the purpose of her life, Marie-Claire Ashcroft is a Happiness Ninja.

It was an honor to be interviewing her for the Voices of Youth community section Inspire, as such a unique but much needed role is just the inspiration-boost we all need.

After sharing Part 1 of her interview with the VOY youth community, it is time to share the concluding portion of the interview:

6- Professional Rebel is amongst your descriptive titles. Rebelling is obviously another determinative thing. It sounds good to accept yourself unique, onto your own path wanting this role. Obviously beating social norms, rules and superstitions running in our generations/history. People using anything to back you down. What’s your message to stay put and just be what you want?

You can live your life doing what others expect of you – your family, your friends, your colleagues and society in general but by doing this, we lose a little part of ourselves.

This is what causes us unhappiness and depression – when we’re ignoring the little spark inside of us that knows our purpose. When we ignore it for too long, it gets our attention by stopping us in our tracks with sickness and poor mental health. It’s almost as if it puts something in the way to get us to stop and think but the thing is that when that happens, we try to push through it even more which makes us worse.

Also, by trying to do what is expected of us, another unpleasant feeling is triggered – anxiety. Our minds are constantly busy by comparing ourselves, telling ourselves we’re not doing enough, being enough, that we’re not far enough along in life compared to everyone else. This affects our self-image and again makes us unhappy.

Like I said earlier – these bad feelings are actually good things if we learn to look at them that way! They tell us we’re going the wrong way and we need to stop and do what is right for us!

So the whole being a rebel and daring to do things is about going against the grain and putting ourselves first and pursuing a life that fits us and makes us feel great. Now some people might say it’s selfish but if you feel good and light up your life, then you inspire others to do the same, you are filled with a lust for life which helps you give more – so that’s hardly selfish is it?

The reason some people don’t like it is because if you’re able to do it, then so can they and that thought scares them so they’d rather do what everyone else is because it’s less scary and more ‘safe’…

7- Unique jobs, purposes in life, have seemed to erupt in this modern world. You and I alike share this uniqueness somehow, but what about those young people who just want to pursue tailored paths in terms of futures and careers, because although they have ideas, they are too afraid to go ahead be unique, thinking it’s all a big risk. Do you believe it’s a big risk?

I would say it’s more of a risk to spend your life afraid and only realise this when it’s too late. Most of us feel like we won’t be able to deal with things so we don’t bother going after them but then when something unexpected happens, like sickness, loss of home or work, we always seem to deal with it. It’s not always pleasant but we always seem to get through whatever is thrown at us.

Jobs and life isn’t the same as it used to be. The western idea of success was defined back when the world was a very different place. Jobs are no longer forever. People want more than just a family. We have internet. We have travel. We have access to information, ideas and inspiration and it’s all so instant. Why not embrace it? You’ll deal with it. I believe in you!

The best thing to do is to sit down and define your idea of success – does that include money? What about travel? Family? What about using your talents? Sit down and think what you might regret not doing and make sure you start trying to fit that into your life. A lot of people fear making a change because they think that their whole life will snowball out of control overnight and they won’t be able to deal with it. That’s not how it works. You go at your own speed. Even if that’s staying on a job for money but spending an hour a week studying or building a business. That doesn’t disrupt your whole life. You might have to make a sacrifice like not going to the pub on Thursday nights and staying in to work on your business but if that’s important to you then it’s what you’ve got to do. Don’t let anyone else tell you otherwise.

Also once you define what’s important to you, you need to find people with the same interests because if you stay where you are, with exactly the same people, you won’t grow and you’ll even be put off going for your dreams. You don’t have to stop seeing these people but you just need someone to look up to and feel motivated by so you don’t feel alone in your pursuit. That’s where other fellow students or business people or even a mentor can come in handy.

8- You use technology for your work as a Happiness Ninja. You recently found the good of making visual boards, which are not only creative and fun to make, but help oneself increase the self-esteem and confidence and celebrate personal achievements. What’s your message to youth being more addictive to technology?

Just with anything, it’s about a balance. Technology, chocolate, alcohol – some is good, it’s just about how you use it. I use technology to spread my message further – instead of just working and connecting with people in my local area, I can spread my message and work to people all over the globe via Facebook, Twitter, live videos, YouTube and Skype. But if technology is being used too much, say being relied upon and someone is not getting out of the house, connecting with people on a face to face basis, being used to numb down feelings and real life – that’s when the problem starts. I think technology can be very exciting and that’s why I feel it should be embraced.

On a personal level, it’s helped me connect with my tribe. I’ve always felt very isolated like I didn’t fit in – it’s helped me connect with other business people and other individuals with the same values as myself. I think it’s wonderful and I no longer feel so alone!

9- Failure, everyone’s afraid of it. I personally could say nothing is really “failing” except for not trying, but what are your thoughts?

I believe you either win or you learn, so either way – that’s a win! Again it’s just how you look at something and the meaning you give to it. Everything can have a load of different meanings if you sit there and think about it. I believe the only way you can fail is by hiding and not doing anything at all.

10- Final message to the youth of today?

Be daring. Live! Breathe. Take it all in. Go outdoors. Talk to people. Look at your strengths instead of your weaknesses. Appreciate what you have. Receive and take in the wonder of the world around you. We’re not here forever. Change is inevitable. Make the most of it and if anyone has a problem, it’s theirs, not yours… hand it straight back to them and carry on with your life.

If you’re having a tough time, reach out. Don’t go it alone. It’s what people like me want to help people with – you’re never alone and most things people fear, feel shameful about and get confused about are the same for everyone – you only feel isolated because people don’t want to open up – but not you, you’re brave, I know it!

Marie-Claire Ashcroft and her recent projects, which can serve yet more inspiration can be found on the following:


Twitter: @profeshrebel

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