Most people are waiting for their happiness: we’ll be happy when we lose that extra weight, when we meet the man (or woman) of our dreams, or when we find that perfect job. Shawn Achor, author of The Happiness Advantage, speaks of significant research that shows how backwards this behaviour can be. You can see this research at GoodThinkINC. But if you want to be entertained as well as educated, take just a few minutes to listen to Shawn Achor from his talk at TED/Bloomington.
Small Changes Ripple Outward
We have the power to make our own happiness. You’ve heard it said many times that we make our own happiness not through the external world, but how we see that world.
But for most people this takes work. Dr. Achor suggests ways to train your brain to see a more positive pattern.
Try at least one of the following daily for 21 days, to create a lasting positive change:
- 3 Gratitudes: write down 3 things every day that you are thankful for
- Journaling: Take 5 minutes to describe a positive experience of the day
- Exercise: 45 minutes a day has been shown to be as good as an antidepressant
- Meditation: take a moment to live in the present, with gratitude.
- Random acts of kindness: take 2 minutes to email or write your thanks to someone within your social support
Train your brain for gratitude, and you will begin to recognise that the present can make you happy without waiting for a future event. Research in The Happiness Advantage shows that when your brain is positive, your relationships, business and educational outcome improves greatly.
Cultivate happiness in your life, and the ripples of change will ripple outward to your commmunity, and hopefully, to the world.