The New Paradigm of Happiness 

–Easy Identification of Non-essentials

Besides the noble art of getting things done, there is the noble art of leaving things undone. The wisdom of life consists in the elimination of non-essentials.

Lin Yutang, the 19h-Century Chinese inventor, linguist, novelist, philosopher, and translator, gave us the above lesson to counter the effects of the current global situation. I am sure some things did not see completion due to the current pandemic in almost every person’s life.

It shall not be a travesty of facts to say that we have also conveniently forgotten the finer details of the tasks left undone in the process. Can you see the glimmer of awakening here? Do you realize how some, or even the majority of the tasks we perform each passing day may be unnecessary after all? I like to compare such pastime activities as Styrofoam Peanuts that act as fillers in the packaging industry. They serve as fillers, to ensure the contents do not move around during transit. Upon reaching their destination, these pretty-looking things lose their worth and become instant trash.

What I certainly propose to do, through these lines, is to create an awareness of the transient nature of efforts that bear no real value.

With the amount of free time at our disposal and the added uncertainty of the much-awaited return to ‘normal,’ we shall feel empowered to introspect and sit in judgment over our daily routine before the onset of the current pandemic. I am sure you will find plenty of the above-mentioned ‘fillers’ that kept you tied up. By the way, I do not intend to criticize anybody related to his or her daily activities. What I certainly propose to do, through these lines, is to create an awareness of the transient nature of efforts that bear no real value. Short of helping us achieve anything measurable, these ‘filler peanuts’ only speed up the brain’s gradual rusting. I can feel the rising urge in the readers to come up with a million explanations to refute my claim. But, for the sake of honesty, please try to redesign your daily routine in such a way that your resource of time benefits you and your family first.

It is deplorable to watch so many of our ‘loved’ relations, friends, and well-wishers show their true worth during times of crisis. If you do not believe me, look at your callers’ list, see how many kept in constant touch. Did they keep track of your well-being, and offered help during the past three months, and you will have your answer. Yes, they continue to go through the same hardship as well, but staying connected nourishes the mutual bonds. Do you get my point?

Lord Buddha once said:

All human unhappiness comes from not facing reality squarely, exactly as it is.

Unfortunately, COVID-19 has allowed us to learn, and gather the necessary strength to face the all-encompassing reality of our relationships, connections, activities, habits, sources-and-resources, entertainment, challenges, careers, jobs, business, as well as so many other related causes for anxiety. On the flip side, this calamity has indirectly helped us become more creative with the emptiness enveloping us with a very high degree of uncertainty.

Kindly allow me to share my belief concerning the most valuable gift we received as we were born. You guessed it right; I am alluding to ‘TIME,’ the irreplaceable treasure that never forewarns us before its end. Time begins with birth and dies with death, simple! In the current situation, we have an abundance of this resource. Simultaneously, we are also short of ideas on how to use it most effectively. So many of us end up wasting it in trivial pursuits. We might find an interesting analogy to this fact in the following quote from W.B. Yeats:

A mermaid found a swimming lad; Picked him for her own; Pressed her body to his body; Laughed, and plunging down, forgot in cruel happiness that even lovers drown.

The above short story gives us ample proof that we ruthlessly ‘KILL’ time by failing put to it to the most productive use possible. Our attitude needs a shift from negative to positive, from surrender to creativity, from remorse to happiness, and from idleness to connectivity. With the massive efforts underway, we shall soon find the antidote to this pandemic, and revert to a more balanced schedule, not necessarily the normal we take for granted.

There is an excellent piece of advice I came across a few years back. It comes from Joseph Addison, the 17th-Century English Playwright, Poet, and Politician:

The grand essentials to happiness in this life are something to do, something to love, and something to hope for.

The moment we realized the inherent wisdom, the road to happiness will start to beckon us. Of course, we must get rid of the extra baggage of non-essentials for the sake of a comfortable journey through life. It may include unnecessary diversions, gloating over trivial matters, keeping the company of selfish friends, and so much more. We need to focus on setting our priorities, delegating responsibility, creating an environment of ‘one-for-all-and-all-for-one,’ aiming for perfection through revisions, and attention to detail, etc.

Thank You!


Bharat Mathur
Bharat Mathur
WHERE goal setting and systematically achieving each one of them has been the ‘Mantra’, where earning trust by delivering value has been an uncompromising principle and where deeply impactful experiences have made an indelible impression to look directly into the eyes of toughest problems and tackling them head-on has been a major cementing glue in the foundation, Bharat Mathur fits the bill, hands down! Creating value for others, out of the challenges his career in the “C” Suite kept throwing at him left, right and center, Bharat now finds solace in being a ‘Guide by Your Side’ rather than a ‘Sage on the Stage with An Eye on What You Buy’! Past 4 decades of Bharat’s life have been no less eventful than that of anyone else in similar circumstances. However, the way he lived from one challenge to another and stayed focused on his goal is clearly visible as much in his Coaching as in his #1 Best Seller Book: “you Are YOU-nique: Realize Your True Worth”! His next book project tackles ‘Internet of things’ (IoT) from the viewpoint of a layman and helps understand this fast-approaching revolution in simple, easy-to-understand language with live examples: “SMART PHONE + I o T = INCOMPARABLE OPPORTUNITIES” Nurturing a number of successful businesses, mentoring a lot more towards astronomical growth and helping them identify and eradicate trouble spots, Bharat has rightfully earned the nickname: ‘Achiever’ Send him Bouquets or Brickbats, Bharat loves it all!

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  1. Thanks a lot, Ms. Paula, for your concurrence with me on the above issues! The worst tragedy of all, in my view, lies in the general trend of remorse, negativity, helplessness, and distress that the general public has started displaying, without an iota of guilt. It hurts me to watch people losing hope. Why do they find it so difficult to see the silver lining in these calamitous clouds engulfing the entire universe? On the contrary, we should all be using this opportunity to reminisce, rejoice, and rejuvenate our energies for the day when these clouds start to dissipate.

    Warm Regards, With A Prayer for All

  2. Wisdom often arises when we can get something good even from the most difficult moments. This period characterized by the pandemic should have taught some good things even if history teaches us that more often people tend to forget and resume old life habits.
    Great life lessons sometimes take the form of stories or anecdotes. Other times they are aphorisms, jokes, strong declarations on some aspects of existence. However, they are always the result of a difficult experience, of profound reflections or of an extraordinary sensitivity. The lesson of a wise man is preserved because it has an important purpose: to remember the values that should guide our actions. We often forget that life really acquires meaning thanks to the guiding principles and our most noble purposes.
    This is what friend Bharat Mathur did in this article: living simple, eliminating objects, thoughts, relationships that are not essential, avoiding chaos and seeking peace, staying in harmony with others. commit time and energy by doing what is most important to us and the community.
    Everything is important equals nothing is important. Focusing on the things that really matter in life is important because that is the basis of our happiness.
    I believe that the experience of the pandemic should have taught us to give the right importance to some elementary things.
    Health is the greatest wealth.
    Time is a limited resource that cannot be returned.
    Receiving and giving love is one of the most fulfilling experiences in life.
    A life without purpose is a life without a destination.
    Thank You.

    • I just cannot thank you enough, Dear Aldo Sir, for your continued interaction with so much positivity! Not only do you enrich me with your vast resource of worldly wisdom, but you also inspire me at the same time, so I could fearlessly share my feelings in these forums.

      “Everything is important equals nothing is important.” Your strong statement lends so much weight to my assertion about ‘the all-encompassing reality of our relationships, connections, activities, habits, sources-and-resources, entertainment, challenges, careers, jobs, business, as well as so many other related causes for anxiety.’

      Thanks, once again, With Warm Regards, and A Prayer for All

    • Because of you.
      I continue to follow you carefully. Your articles are a stimulus for reflection.

    • Compliment well taken, Aldo Sir! I shall always strive to meet your expectations. In the meantime, I wish you and all your loved one’s good health, happiness, and early relief from this nuisance of a pandemic.

      With Thanks, Warm Wishes, and A Prayer For All

  3. Bharat,
    This is brilliant.. I needed no convincing as I was already in agreement.
    So many non essentials block people from living fully and completely. They are burdensome and chain you down.

    This was very well written and it resonated with me wholeheartedly.
    I think this crisis taught people many lessons, some are still figuring it out..some already knew.
    It showed us who cared, where there was support and help..for all the right reasons.
    People were still trying to sell and disguised in the cloak of caring… true colours started showing.
    I am grateful to you for writing this and asking the questions that make people think.
    We all need to survive.
    I see a major shift in economics as people will think twice about what is essential and what isn’t.
    We can be more aware as to who and what is telling us what we need. If someone doesn’t know me…who are they to tell me?

    Love this quote too…
    “ The grand essentials to happiness in this life are something to do, something to love, and something to hope for. ”

    We are all in need of “Something to hold onto, Something to believe, Something to give reason, Something to achieve”

    HOPE! The ignition!

    Thank you my friend
    Love your work!

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