Reflections: Have, Do, Be

The “Have, Do, Be” Paradigm Shift

People tend to think that if they HAVE all the things that they desire, that they’ll be able to DO everything they want to do and that they’ll BE happy.


As a society we focus on making enough money to HAVE the lifestyle we desire (DO) thinking that this will make us happy (BE). Yet we all know that things don’t make us happy, and neither does a lifestyle that we think we’re supposed to have. The road to happiness requires shifting this paradigm. By focusing on BEing happy, letting our actions come from a place of happiness (DO) and the things that matter end up giving us what we truly desire (HAVE). 


I’ve done my fair share of meditation on this thought and am constantly reminding myself to make BE-DO-HAVE my mantra. In 2009, in Mark Maier’s “Leading As A Way of Serving” class I was first introduced to the idea. In that semester, I learned to appreciate WHO I was over what I was going to DO or HAVE in life. Among many others, this is a life lesson that I would never have imagined to learn in a college classroom. Maybe because Mark’s idea of a classroom was a Buddhist retreat in the San Bernardino Mountains, a local ropes course, or simply parked underneath a giant shade tree. There is plenty of material on the HAVE-DO-BE paradigm shift online if you’re interested in further reading… but the idea is simple. In fact, you don’t have to DO anything. Just Be.

Live your life true to your values and beliefs.

Let your behaviors follow.

Just Be. (HAPPY).

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