Spend a few moments glancing at the websites of any of the major international news services - it is little wonder that so many of my clients have been emailing me to tell me just how difficult it is to stay positive at present. And these are people that I've been working with for some time - sometimes for years - they should know better. Actually, they do know better - but with so much bad news around, they're finding that it takes less effort to simply follow the herd and slip into the same weird and "wonderful" world that most so-called normal people are drowning in at present. They're finding the going really difficult. So, I'm sure, are people who are scared that they'll lose their jobs or homes - even more so those who already have.

What is the "power of positive thinking" going to do for you if not only are you finding the going difficult but all the signs point to the going actually being difficult? Positive thinking won't pay the mortgage if you've just lost your job, will it? Positive thinking, in the face of downright adversity, will possibly make matters even worse - because when you think "positive" and lots of "negatives" happen, how are you going to feel? Even worse.

We need to put a stop to the growing mass hysteria that firstly created and is now fuelling global economic depression. At the outset it was hysterical greed. At this stage worry and fear are taking greed's place. In the face of all this, you need to get back to basics. As a client said to me last week "What's happening at present is causing people to think again - to rethink what's important to them". What's important to you? Is it your car, your designer clothes, your house, your holidays, your holiday home, your golf club? By the way, over the years, I've heard plenty of people admit that, without ever thinking about it, these actually were the things that had become important to them! However, when they explore the "meaning of life" just a little deeper, it becomes blindingly obvious that these things are not important (they're simply nice to have) - the important stuff is just a little more basic.

So, if you want to get back to basics, here are a couple of quick ideas.

First of all, you actually need to define "happiness and success" for yourself. I often suggest that my clients define their own unique version of success based on the following broad proposition: I love what I do, I'm good at it, I get well rewarded for it and it makes a positive difference in the lives of those I touch. I have plenty of balance in my life to do the things that turn me on. I've great personal relationships and I'm happy with me. If that broad proposition doesn't describe your position in life at present, then read on!

Secondly, you must realise that your happiness will only be found within - where else would you expect to find it? There's no point in seeking happiness in external things or, indeed, other people - they can all vanish so easily. And, of course, if you're not happy with yourself, then you cannot be happy - nor can you be of any use in trying to create happiness for others. You need to accept yourself - the third idea, below, might help with this.

Thirdly, you need to dismantle your self-perceptions. Your perceived faults, failings and even your strengths will inevitably get in the way of your happiness - because they are not real, they are just perceptions that were impressed upon you when you were "young and impressionable". Indeed, years of psychological work proves that our perceptions mask our innate ability to achieve our hearts' desires.

In other words, getting back to basics, start with getting back to the basics of you, who you really are and of what you're really capable. This can only be done in the quiet of your own heart. How? Try taking one step back from the frenzy of everyday modern life - whether that's going for a long walk, taking a whole day out on your own and doing very little or, perhaps the best way of re-acquainting yourself with the inner you, meditating. All great journeys start with a better knowledge of who you really are.

Author's Bio: 

Willie Horton was born and educated in Dublin, Ireland. An ex-Accountant and ex-Banker, he has worked with business leaders for thirteen years, enabling them understand how their state of mind creates their lives. Clients describe the results as 'unbelievable' and 'life-changing'. Willie now lives with his wife and children in the French Alps. For more information, visit: