By Joel Salomon 

I was literally in tears. I was sitting at the Harlem-125th Street stop of the Metro-North New Haven Line at 7:15 am after having heard the news. One of my biggest shorts was going to be acquired for a 30% premium. Yes, we were hedged but definitely should not have been today! Having a short acquired and having to buy it back 30% higher than you sold it is not the way to start your day!

Not only that, but I was short a number of companies in the property and casualty (P&C) industry that were going to go up in sympathy. Also, I found out a few hours later that even those that had no correlation to this large insurer were going to jump as well.

Why was I in tears? I literally felt pain in my stomach as I was going to lose money for my investors. The people who had entrusted me with their hard-earned money and believed in me to manage it. I felt like I let them down. I felt sad. I felt unworthy!

As I walked into my office thirty minutes later, I put a song on speaker-mode so that my colleagues could hear:

“O-O-H Child, things are going to get easier
O-O-H Child, things’ll get brighter…
Someday, yeah
We’ll put it together and we’ll get it all done
When your head is much lighter…”
O-O-H Child by The Five Stairsteps

I was definitely not feeling happy, but the song made me stop crying. I put on a calm appearance and I did realize that, eventually, things were going to get brighter.

Being happy does create more happiness in your life. I enumerated a number of things that can change your mood in Mindful Money Management: Memoirs of a Hedge Fund Manager and explained them in detail. Here I would like to just list a few items. Take what resonates and throw out what doesn’t.

1. Listen to uplifting songs. Besides O-O-H Child, I also listened to a number of songs with “Believe” in the title. You can find my favorite songs on here:

2. Use affirmations to change your feelings from negative to positive (see Section 2 Chapter 6). I have free self-talk audio files on my website here: Scroll down to download them. Many will improve your self-esteem.

3. Read some inspiring books. I have my favorites here: And I give everyone who wants one a free copy of my, now, second favorite book, Think and Grow Rich by Napoleon Hill. Contact me on to get your free copy. This is the book that changed my life and I have read it over twenty times.

4. Giving. I found that being of service to others (Chapter 1 in Mindful Money Management) was part of my true purpose in life and when I helped others it assisted them and made me happier!

5. Meditate. Clearing the mind opens you up to all possibilities (Mike Dooley would say “Infinite Possibilities). This was Chapter 9 of Mindful Money Management.

6. Tapping. Using the Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) I described in Mindful Money Management can literally change your negative energy to positive energy in minutes. Tapping on key chakra points around the body will expel negative energy and allow positive energy to flow in.

7. Have fun! Do activities that you enjoy: play a game of ping-pong with a friend, play video games, go for a hike or a walk on a sun-drenched day, jog or work-out at a fitness center, or get a massage or manicure/pedicure.

One of the items I didn’t enumerate in Mindful Money Management is “creative visualization.” This is a habit that can quickly get you to be happy.

The first step is to find a comfortable place to visualize every day. Schedule the time every day; I recommend 3-5 minutes a day. The next step is to write down three dreams or desires that you will consciously think about each time. The most important step is to imagine your emotions when your dreams and desires occur.

It would be even better if you could see yourself in the “dream.” Try to be as specific as possible when you visualize. If your dream is to go on vacation to Fiji, then picture yourself in the bathing suit on the beach with the sun beaming down on you. Really feel the warmth of the sun. If you like swimming or snorkeling, imagine having your flippers and mask on, being in the turquoise water, seeing the amazing blue and yellow regal angelfish.

Mike Dooley, in his eye-opening book (and workshop) Playing The Matrix, discusses the three-step process: choose a general end result like happiness. Get into the details without attaching to them and finally, take action without messing with the ‘cursed hows.’ Mike discusses the importance of focusing on general happiness so that you can depend on yourself to reach your goal.

Mike says “your situation won’t get better until you feel better about your situation.” What he means is “Feel good now!” Don’t wait for manifestation to happen. Don’t wait until your thought becomes a thing. Don’t wait for your dream or desire to come into physical reality. Feel good right now. Act as if what you want to happen already happened. When you feel happy, more things will come into your life that reinforces happiness.

So, how can happiness help you become financially free? The key is that success does not lead to happiness, it’s the other way around: more happiness creates more success. This is true because of the Law of Attraction which states that you are an energy source and a transmitter and receptor for that energy. When you put out a vibration of the highest level which includes joy, gratitude, appreciation, love, and of course, happiness, you attract those high-level feelings into your life. When you vibrate happiness you attract more happiness into your life. What makes you happy? More money? More financial success in your investments?

I believe most of you are shaking your head ‘yes’ right now. That is why happiness is one of the keys to financial freedom.

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