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The Elite Performer: Because I’m Happy

Andy W. Harris
Dec 31, 2015

You’re welcome for leaving that jingle in your head the rest of the day. Seriously though … are you happy? It’s a good question I don’t think many of us ask ourselves on a consistent basis. Happiness is described as a mental or emotional state of well-being, defined by positive or pleasant emotions ranging from contentment to intense joy. Man, doesn’t that sound great? This makes me really think about the word “contentment” and how much that word can truly define happiness from its roots growing all the way up to intense joy. That “intense joy” is certainly a feeling I want every day, but I wish it were that easy.

Every morning at the gym, I see the same old man walking around, always in the best of moods. He seems to be quite personable and says hello to everyone at the club and everyone knows him. He reminds me of someone that seems truly content with their life and always in good spirits, maybe even riding the intense joy wagon. You can tell when someone has legitimate happiness and pure intentions. They don’t need exterior support or influence for joy as they have an internal happy auto-pilot taking care of that. It’s a good trait to have and those that portray this image certainly attract others.

About once a week, the old man walks up to me and asks a few questions or makes a few comments that really get me thinking. I have to get on myself to not feel as though this is a disruption in my workout when taking off my headphones, providing he always has something valuable to say.

This past week, he asked me how I was doing and how work was going. I told him the common answer and that things were very busy and work was going great, having a great year, etc. He responds by saying how great it is that I am having a successful business. He then asked if this success was bringing me happiness.

I thought for a second, are these two things one in the same? Can you have success without happiness or is happiness the very definition of success? What exactly is success if you’re not happy? I answered by telling him that I was happy, but was I being fully honest? In reality, the more “success” I have as others define it, brings more pressure, responsibility, deadlines and stress at times. Stress and happiness don’t get along all that well. He went on to talk about how important it is that I am truly happy as so few people experience this true happiness.

I think he left me with a challenge to find my true joy. I thought about that for quite some time. I do feel I am content and certainly happy with most things in my life, and of course, my amazing family. I can also say that I certainly have some days where I am happier than other days as do most people. For us to perform our best, I believe we all need “true” happiness and to find what it is that produces this within us. It’s not just about another’s definition of success, but our own definition which must bring us internal happiness or “intense joy.” I believe you cannot be truly successful without it … so are you happy?

Andy W. Harris, CRMS is president and owner of Lake Oswego, Ore.-based Vantage Mortgage Group Inc. and past president of the Oregon Association of Mortgage Professionals. He may be reached by phone at (877) 496-0431, e-mail [email protected] or visit

This article originally appeared in the October 2016 print edition of National Mortgage Professional Magazine.

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