How Happiness Works (and How You Can Work It)

By Gregg Sanderson

What makes you think you need needs?

We get a lot of support for the idea that life and happiness are all about satisfying needs.  I brazenly proclaim,


As you move from everyday stress to lightness and joy, your greatest obstacles are your needs —those unconscious beliefs that cause you to react to people, situations and circumstances.  They cause ALL stress and emotional suffering.

A need is anything you MUST have to be happy. The object of our “happiness game” is to “uplevel” the need to a preference. In other words, you can prefer things be a certain way, but still be happy if they’re different.

You can never have an unhappy response without an unsatisfied need—Stimulus > NEED > Response.

Now go a step deeper and discover how your needs are a product of your thinking, AND VICE VERSA! They control your life. They cause you to react emotionally to situations past, present and imagined into the future.

Last month we talked about ways our needs get programmed when we aren’t paying attention. Unfilled needs then trigger emotional reactions that reinforce them.

Two elements affect your needs—your thoughts and emotions. If your mind is a boat sailing through life, your thoughts are the rudder and emotions are the wind.

You’ve heard the expression “Thoughts Become Things.” They do, and they also program your needs. If that’s so, then you may ask, “How come we don’t get programmed with every little thought we think?”

Thinking is a 24/7 activity. You can’t just turn it on and off at your convenience. If everything you thought had the same effect, you’d react to unicorns and disasters a hundred times a minute.

How do you modulate that? Simple. The stronger the feeling, the greater the effect on your needs. It doesn’t matter if you’re feeling intense love and joy or intense anger and fear. When it comes to programming, it’s only the intensity that counts.

That’s good news and bad news. Of course, you’d rather program yourself with love than fear.  We’ve had clients who, upon a breakup, would proclaim, “I’ll never let anybody hurt me again.”

Y’know what? They were right. They closed down and were afraid to let anybody close enough to enjoy any intimacy. The force of their emotions did its job.

Here’s the good news. You are in charge. You can use the strong anger-fear emotions to implant a love-joy program. It’s easy, and it works like this:

Keep your conscious mind occupied with the situation, working up all the emotion you can.

Sneak in a new positive program.

Feel the unpleasant emotions disappear.

Of course, that’s the condensed version. Next month, we’ll give you specific instructions for a way to provide instant happiness.

Stay tuned for “Tidings of comfort and joy.”*

*…and be sure your subscription to Transformation Magazine is up to date.


Gregg Sanderson is author of Spirit With A Smile, The World According To BOB. He is a licensed practitioner in the Centers for Spiritual Living, and a Certified Trainer for Infinite Possibilities. His earlier books were, What Ever Happened To Happily Ever After? and Split Happens—Easing The Pain Of Divorce. His latest project is the New Thought Global Network, where subscribers can enjoy the best in New Thought presentations from anywhere at any time. You can see it at



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