The Power to Make People Happy

If you think about it, all your success depends on other people. People can give you opportunities, money, contracts, praise, support, help and advice. They can recommend you to other people who also give you what you need.

People can also stop your success. They can criticize you, oppose you and close down your progress. Even if they do not actively oppose you, they can avoid you, hide your options or simply do nothing for you.

“If a person thinks he can be happy without making those around him happy, he’s crazy.” — L. Ron Hubbard

When you can make people happy, you earn many benefits.

* You make a great first impression.
* People instantly like you without having a particular reason to do so.
* No one believes you are a threat to them.
* They are interested in being with you or working with you.
* Your own happiness gets a boost.

Everyone Matters

Everyone has an identity. It’s what they want to be. You can call it their “beingness.”

Trying to make people change their beingness is a common activity. For example, a 10-year-old girl’s parents are worried that she loves motorcycles. They are afraid she’ll grow up and join a motorcycle gang. So they make her wear dresses and play with dolls. They forbid her from being around motorcycles. A happy girl becomes unhappy.

As another example, Fred is a computer geek. He likes to wear goofy clothes and tell silly jokes. Fred goes to a college where the popular students criticize him. “Fred, your jokes are so dumb I want to gag.” “Fred asked me out to dinner once and I laughed at him.” “Check out Fred’s striped pants! What an idiot!”

Married people often try to change each other’s beingness as well. “Jill, I wish you were not so talkative. You’re on the phone all day.” “Jack, you lazy bum. I wish you were more energetic so you would take me out dancing!” Jack and Jill’s marriage is not happy.

How do you feel when someone tries to change your beingness? Perhaps you feel resentful. You might even want to attack the person. You certainly do not feel happier.

Granting Beingness

“The ability to assume or grant (give, allow) beingness is probably the highest of human virtues*. It is even more important to be able to permit (allow) other people to have beingness than to be able oneself to assume it.” — L. Ron Hubbard from The Fundamentals of Thought (virtue: good or desirable quality)

As you may know, you must “be” before “doing” or “having.” For example, before “having” a good marriage, you must first “be” a good husband or wife. You can then “do” the things necessary to then “have” a great marriage.

Per the above quote, a skill more important than assuming your own beingness is permitting others to be whatever they want to be.

For example, you need to let Fred the computer geek be exactly what he wants to be. You grant him beingness. You say to yourself, “It’s completely okay with me for Fred to wear odd clothing and make bad jokes.” You then realize Fred is actually a good person. You laugh at his jokes. You admire his purple ties. You become friends. A few years later, you get an executive job at his new billion-dollar company.

Granting beingness to marriage partners can seem very difficult, but anyone can do it. “Jack, if you want to lie on the couch and watch TV for hours each night, that’s totally okay with me.” “Jill, you can go shopping with your friends every day if you like.” Because you sincerely grant beingness to your spouse, you are both much happier.

For parents, ensuring their children are happy is a high priority. Granting beingness is essential to this happiness. For example, on Monday, little Joey wants to be a fireman. His mom says, “You’ll be a great fireman!” On Tuesday, Joey wants to be a basketball star. “I think you’ll be a wonderful basketball star!”

Or as a teenager, Joey wants to be a champion e-gamer or YouTube influencer. If his parents are smart, they grant him this beingness.

Later in life, Joey’s mother still grants him beingness. “So you want to quit college to work for a rock band? You’ll be setting up the stage? Well, I think you’ll be the best stage manager they’ve ever hired!”

What if Joey’s mother had not granted him beingness. “Joey, that’s the stupidest decision you’ve ever made! You must quit this job and go back to college.” Of course, Joey can’t admit he is wrong about his decision and so sets up stages for rock bands for the next 25 years.

Change the World

Imagine how the world would be if everyone granted beingness to everyone else.

Career choices would come from the heart. You and everyone around you could map out your own lives. You could be whomever you wanted to be.

No more discrimination because of the color of your skin. Women would be treated as fairly in business as men. Everyone could join whatever religion they preferred.

Governments would get more accomplished as they allow each other to be who they wanted to be. No more wars as each country would grant beingness to the others. After all, you cannot be an enemy with someone who grants you beingness, nor can they be your enemies when you grant them beingness.

Such a world is possible. It starts with you granting beingness to everyone you know.

Five Recommendations

1. Grant beingness to everyone you meet today. Let them be whoever they want to be. Make no attempt to change their beingness.

2. Grant beingness to someone you already like. Notice what happens to your feelings and your relationship with this person.

3. If someone irritates you, grant him or her beingness. For example, if another driver on the road makes you mad, grant him beingness.

If someone appears odd or ugly to you, grant this person beingness. If a friend or family member gets on your nerves, grant them beingness.

4. If you dislike, distrust or hate someone, grant him or her beingness. That’s right. Do the opposite of what you might feel like doing.

5. Grant beingness to yourself. Make it okay to be who you are with no effort to change or disagree with anything about yourself. You are who you are.

Five Advanced Recommendations

Take this people skill to a higher level with steps like these.

1. Add your focus to this skill. Just before you grant beingness to someone focus 100% of your attention on them. When you then grant them beingness, you cause a bigger impact.

2. As you focus on a person, perceive who they want to be. Then grant THAT beingness to them.

For example, a poorly-dressed woman might be trying to be a beautifully-dressed woman, so you grant her the beingness as a beautifully-dressed person. Or a short skinny teenager is trying to be an important powerful man, so grant him that beingness.

3. Increase your speed. Focus on the person and grant him or her beingness as fast as you can. Work on your speed until you can do it in one second or less. You can then merely glance at someone and make them feel pretty good about themselves.

4. Grant beingness to people who are not like you. Make it okay for people to be whoever they are: homeless people, failures, alcoholics, irresponsible kids, drug addicts and everyone else. At first, you might feel some resistance, but never stop trying until you have accepted them just the way they are.

5. Improve your relationships with anyone, anywhere and at any time.

For example, you want a better relationship with your spouse, your work team members or your neighbors.

Give them 100% of your focus and grant them beingness. It does not matter where they are located.

You and those you grant beingness to will feel an instant surge of happiness.

Bottom Line: Granting beingness at this level is one the most powerful people skills you will ever master.

How you treat people in other ways can also make them happy and earn their valuable support. Read “Your Supporters.”