How not to sabotage your own happiness?

The happiness of your life depends on the quality of your thoughts.


I read this quote in a magazine somewhere years ago and it was deeply etched in my memory. To me it described so much of our human struggle. Totally unnecessary. Pain inflicted on us by our own thoughts.


It also reminded me of the short Buddhist story of two arrows.

It is a story about a man who ventured into a forest and was struck by a hunter's arrow. His arm was injured and he was bleeding. The hunter panicked and ran away, leaving the wounded man all alone in the woods.


The man sat there and began to worry. His thoughts grew darker by the minute. Will I survive? Will I lose my arm? How will my family survive after my death? and so on and so forth, the story goes.


Hey, where's the second arrow? – you may wonder.

Didn't you notice?

I will explain.


The first arrow was the real arrow shot by the hunter and the second arrow was self-inflicted by the wounded man through his worries. Note that the pain of the first arrow was inevitable, but the pain and suffering of the second arrow was conditional and could be completely avoided.


He could have walked back to the village, where he would get help and go back to his family. He could have fully concentrated on his safety and care.

Instead, he poured his precious energy into worrying and speculating about things that might never happen.


I love this old story because it is so simple and relevant to this day. In sharing this with you, I want to encourage you to observe your own thoughts, to listen to the conversations around you, to read the news (just to get the example, then stop!) and see how we all every day “shoot second arrows”…


So many of our thoughts are based not on facts, but on "could be" and "what if" and are either the worry about future events that may never happen or the worrying about past events that no one can change anymore. Our happiness disappears the moment we let those thoughts take over and we identify with them.


So, start questioning the truth and reality of your thoughts! Put your precious energy into staying in the moment and living your life in the NOW.

See how it enlightens you, how your energy stays positive and vibrations high no matter what the events of your life are.


Remember, it's not about denying reality. If you feel sadness, sorrow, pain, or anger, let it be there, but stay with the feeling. Don't go into your thoughts. Concentrate completely on the emotion. Let it fill your body. Emotions don't stay in our bodies when we let them be felt. They will go away if you don't fall into the trap of believing your thoughts are your emotions.


Lots of love and hugs to you all!

Related articles

Monika DeBoer


I offer holistic energetic therapy and nutritional coaching that appeals to you as a unique and whole person. I am also a teacher of Energetic Massage at Healing Space Institute in Bussum, the Netherlands. My mission is to help people live in a state of optimal health and wellness and reconnect them with their body's innate wisdom and healing power.


More about who I am

My offer