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What is The Happiness Tree?


This blog and its companion book are a direct challenge to the preconceived notions, fears, biases and flawed approaches that hold many of us back from success in relationships, work, creativity and most importantly, life satisfaction.

Like many of you, from my adolescent years, I was seeking guidance to help me understand the complex interplay between myself and the world at large: A sort of “Life Manual”. I would peruse book stores and act on recommendations by friends and respected “gurus”, and never found a book, program or methodology that connected all the dots.

I’d read one book about Spirituality, and another about Self Esteem. Yet another about The Creative Process followed by a treatise on Relationships. Each book seemed to partially address one piece of the puzzle, but not how that element fit into or coordinated with all the others.

Then at a dark, pivotal point in my mid-life, I felt the need for just such a paradigm shift. A complete overhaul of my belief systems and a new scaffolding upon which to construct my future. I was sure that in the new frontier of the internet, I’d be able to find just the right message, delivered just the right way that would provide me that “Aha moment” I so desperately desired. But alas, I found only bits and pieces, not a cohesive, holistic approach to creating sustainable happiness.


So, I built it myself.

One of the pearls of wisdom that stuck with me during my many years of searching, was that ‘all the tools and information we need to create a productive, happy life, are already inside of us’. This made sense to me. Though not a religious person, I have always believed that we were brought into this life to fulfill a purpose. And if that was so, then it would stand to reason that we’d be provided the skills necessary to manifest that purpose or at least the means to acquire them. From that perspective, our challenge then, from the moment we’re born, (or some would say, even before that), is to discover our mission, then develop the energy, passion and abilities to fulfill it.

Along the way though, most of us get bogged down in the details. To use a driving metaphor, we head off perhaps in the right direction and then hit a pothole. Our vehicle becomes temporarily disabled and so we hitch a ride and become a passenger on someone else’s journey. Through detours and switchbacks, we may spend years retracing our steps in an effort to regain the momentum of those earlier times. Along the way, circumstance or destiny places what feels like insurmountable barriers in our path, causing us to rethink our entire rai·son d'ê·tre.

This is usually when the pivot happens. When our belief systems collapse, leaving us feeling incapable of addressing even the simplest task, for lack of confidence in our own abilities or the very righteousness of humanity. I built The Happiness Tree for this critical juncture in my own life and by extension, to help you through yours.

This system is named The Happiness Tree, for a reason. By following its intuitive structure: Roots; Trunk; Limbs and Branches, we begin to organize the seemingly complex interplay between ourselves and others, into a visual framework, allowing us to step back for the first time and see the entire global connections that make up our lives. From this vantage point, areas that are weak or unbalanced are revealed. We are then guided toward achieving a broader and more effective distribution of our time, energy, talents, passions and goals through the implementation of practical, common sense strategies. Branch, by branch we begin to fill out our own unique tree, from top to bottom, enhancing our confidence, relationships, creativity, purpose and ultimately, our life satisfaction and happiness.

Let "The Happiness Tree" support you on your quest to achieve the life you’ve always dreamed of. Just read, absorb, practice. evolve and become the manifestation of Joy in your own life and that of those you love.

-Shane Eric Mathias
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Hello, I'm Shane, the creator of The Happiness Tree. Please click on my picture to email me comments, questions, or just to say hi!
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