A number of years ago, a friend of mine asked me if I was happy. I replied that I was 100% happy at the time, to which she responded "Oh, that's very sad!" I went on to explain to her that one finds happiness within (where else would you expect to find it?) and that my being happy didn't mean that I didn't want to achieve more, that I didn't want more of all the good things that life has to offer.

I used the word "want" but, in truth, what I meant was "prefer". You see, generally speaking, we haven't got a clue as to what we really want. And although one so-called personal development expert recently told me that that is why most people are unhappy and unsuccessful (that they don't know what they want), how could the normal mind know what their heart really, really desires, when all the other normal people around them are judging their happiness and success in terms of how they compare to all the other normal people? Indeed, some people who single-mindedly knew what they wanted are some of history's worst nightmares. Adolf Hitler knew what he wanted - in the end it was good for neither him nor anyone else. Pol Pot was single-minded in the pursuit of his goals as was Josef Stalin. These are not the type of people we should aspire to be!

No. Want for nothing. Indeed, even if all hell is breaking out around you at this moment, if you pause for reflection you will discover an eternal truth - that all is well in this moment, you have everything you need for the perfect life, here in this now. Therefore, the single-mindedness you need is a commitment and determination to live life to the full in the present moment, to engross yourself in the task in hand, to invest more and more of your energy into the here and now.

Quantum physics proves that if you invest more of your energy in the present moment, you will get what you want. It works for people like Nelson Mandela just as much as it worked for Adolf Hitler. Energy in - energy out. Psychology also proves that if you pay attention to the present moment, you will achieve success and peace of mind.

If these are scientific facts, then you need to make absolutely sure that you know what you want - because it could be the worst thing in the world for you and others. The old saying "be careful what you wish for" is more than an appropriate quote at this stage! And that is why I say that you should want for nothing. You should have preferences to which you are neither attached nor which distract you from the wonder of the here and now. Preferences rather than wants or needs point you in the right direction but don't rope you in to a destination to which, if you don't arrive, you will be unhappy. Preferences are like an inner compass - and if you find that the needle points to somewhere that's bad for you or bad for others, then you can always re-chart your course.

Prefer what's best for you. Neither you nor I know what's best for us but, having that preference as our "goal in life" is the best way of ensuring that your mind doesn't dwell on what you don't currently have and, in doing so, enables your mind to become more and more focused on the present moment.

And it is the present moment which is of paramount importance. It is where you are right now. It is the only place in which you can be your best, be at your most effective. Scientific fact states that it is the only time and place there is. It is the time and place in which the responsive energy of the universe will respond to your heart's desires - if you only get your wants and needs out of the way (those wants and needs block your ability to focus your energy in the present moment).

So, focus your mind here and now. Come to your senses - you have five of them, use them to appreciate and more fully experience the present moment. If it turns you on (because, in fact, that's what we're talking about) use meditation as a means of disciplining your mind to experience the present moment. There are other ways, but meditation is cool! You see sporting greats use age-old breathing exercises to steady their minds to enable them do their very best in just that moment. If it's good enough for them, it's good enough for you and me!

Whatever path you choose towards cultivating your ability to experience the wonder of the here and now, choose to be all that you can be - here and now. The past is a foreign country and the future are nows that are yet to come. Each now along the way is all we have - prefer to be here.

Author's Bio: 

Willie Horton was born and educated in Dublin, Ireland. He has worked in "self-improvement" with business leaders, sports people and ordinary people for thirteen years, enabling them understand how their state of mind creates their lives. The results are described as 'unbelievable', 'life-changing'. Willie lives with his wife and children in the French Alps. For more information, visit: