Happiness is a topic that is greatly debated. What brings it, how do we keep it, and why does it seem so elusive?
First of all, what is happiness? Is it having the right job, the right relationship, having or not having children, looking the right way and living the right lifestyle? You can see how subjective happiness is.
If happiness is contingent on everything lining up just right, no wonder it seems out of reach most of the time. The wealthy with no wants can be miserable, and the poor can be full of joy. So, let’s agree that happiness has nothing to do with stuff.
What if being loved is the answer? “There is only one happiness in this life, to love and be loved” — George Sand.
Again, it seems we are judging happiness by something outside of ourselves. I’m not discounting love; I believe it is a vital element of happiness. It is our expectation of love that can leave us believing we are missing something. There is a place inside that gets filled up with light and joy when someone says how wonderful and special you are. When that is taken away, pain replaces that happy feeling. So, that can’t really be the answer.
What else do we believe about happiness? Think about your own experience with happiness. Does it come and go? Do you have those days when you are just in the dumps and you know nothing is going to go right? Haven’t you had enough bad days?
Here’s the truth. Happiness is not contingent on anyone or anything. The reality is that nothing around you really has to change for you to be happy all the time.
Here are five secrets to happiness:
Let’s get real about New Year’s Resolutions. They usually don’t work. That’s why they are the same ones you had a year ago in January. I’m going to get right to the point!
Here’s what does work.
Call Kathleen for a free conversation about what you want in your life and how you can achieve it. 480 201-5612 or Kathleen@wwfireteams.com
By Kathleen Dorson, Business Trainer & Consultant, Win Win Fire Teams, LLC
If you want happiness for an hour, take a nap. If you want happiness for a day, go fishing. If you want happiness for a year, inherit a fortune. If you want happiness for a lifetime, help someone. — Chinese Proverb
What compels us to take care of others, and why are we happier when we do? A study done by the University of California concluded, “When it comes to the pursuit of happiness, popular culture encourages a focus on oneself and on one’s needs. Mounting evidence, by contrast, suggests that being kind to others (i.e., engaging in prosocial behavior) consistently leads to increases in happiness.” We’ve all experienced times when we have felt greater happiness and times when it is seems to be elusive.
As a college student, I experienced a deeply profound event. I was married at the time with a small child and had gone back to school to finish my business degree. An evening class I was attending was meeting for the last time, and I noticed a woman that seemed to be acting a little strangely that night. She and I were the last ones out of the room and, though I needed to get home to my little one, I reached out and asked if everything was ok. She looked at me with such despair that I took her to a seat and started to talk with her. After a few minutes, she told me she had a purse full of pills and was planning on ending her life that night. I talked with her until the instructor came outside check on us. We were able to get the help this young woman needed. I met up with her shortly after to see how she was doing. Just reaching out to her had given her the touch she needed to take a pause and stop what she was about to do. I’m grateful for that tug I felt to reach out to her and simply ask if she was ok.
As a teenager, I learned that if depression started to overtake me, I needed to reach out to someone else to help them in some way, and it would put me back into a happier place. So, why do we feel better about ourselves and others when we give of ourselves? I believe it is because we are social beings. Our survival depends on others, whether as babies, small children, adults needing support and love, or when we are older and no longer able to take care of our needs. More than survival alone, we need love and interaction that is meaningful. The greatest punishment in prison is solitary confinement. In an article by George Dvorsky, he states, “Disturbingly, solitary confinement beyond 15 days leads directly to severe and irreversible psychological harm.” We are built to need other people. When we take care of other people, it touches a part of us that brings joy. We are doing what we are meant to do as human beings.
We are whole beings, when something is out of balance or not working in one area of our life, all the other areas struggle to flourish properly. Fix what isn’t working, and it all comes together in amazing success.
Kathleen Dorson is available to discuss your business needs. She has also worked as a health and life coach and utilizes all her skills and knowledge for her clients. Call 480 890-0100 or go to winwinfireteams.com to request a consultation with Kathleen or one of the other coaches with Win Win.
Sources available upon request.
We have all heard the sayings “time is money,” “no time like the present,” “killing time,” and “saving time.” Time is the big equalizer, we all have the exact same amount of time allotted to us each day, but what separates us is the way we use our time.
If you had only two hours a day to work on your business or complete tasks, what would you spend your time doing? Your priorities would come into focus really quickly.
Here are some tools I’ve found very useful to help me organize and accomplish more in less time.
This tool makes a huge difference in a busy person’s day, whether a business owner or managing a household, it helps not only in efficiency but in their stress level being reduced. As a rule, the more things that you keep in your head the more your stress level goes up.
When you first get to work or start your day, don’t open your email or dive into the piles on your desk. Take a few minutes and put all those thoughts, reminders and things you need to do that are floating around in your head, and write them down on paper.
Once you have everything written down, then it is time to categorize, prioritize, and schedule when and how these tasks will be completed.
You should have a system that can be accessed from anywhere, so it’s with you at all times. I’ve found Trello an easy system to use. It syncs with my computer and phone, and whomever I need to share information with, I can add. For example, I share a list with my assistant on a “board,” so anytime I have a task for her to complete, I list it there. She can reply and add notes on the list and let me know the status of the task and when it’s completed. Whatever system you use should be mobile, easy to use, have plenty of flexible options, free if possible, and allow you to add others to it.
Follow a schedule
Create a schedule that keeps you from losing track of what you should be working on. Knowing sleep deprivation decreases productivity, I like to start by scheduling my sleep time first — what time to go to bed and get up in the morning. Then, build a schedule that can keep you focused throughout the day. Use a timer to work on a project. When there is a certain time frame, we can focus completely, not allowing interruptions and distractions that can keep the project moving too slowly.
If you find you need breaks during the day to get a breather and refresh yourself for more concentrated energy, schedule it in. Don’t feel guilty about it; you are the creator of your schedule. Build your day so it works the best for you, your business, and your family.
I enjoy a book called Eat that Frog by Brian Tracy, and it’s on our recommended reading list. I like the concept he acquired from Mark Twain, who said “eat a live frog every morning first thing and everything else after that will be easy.” Pick something every day that you know, once completed, a weight will be lifted from your shoulders. It will probably be something hard that you really just want to put off for another day. Write it on your calendar to do first thing and just get it done. You will have a better day because of doing something hard, and you will become empowered, allowing other tasks that seemed hard to be done without as much resistance.
As a business coach, I work with people who have taken on all aspects of a small business. There are countless jobs they do, from marketing, sales, service, administrative work, to shopping for supplies. Managing time and understanding where to spend time is essential to make a business grow and be successful. Take a look at the way you start and spend the hours of your day. With some focus and changes, your time can be spent in more productive ways, leaving more time for family, fun, and favorite actives.
By Kathleen Dorson
Win Win Fireteams
If you want happiness for an hour, take a nap.
If you want happiness for a day, go fishing.
If you want happiness for a year, inherit a fortune.
If you want happiness for a lifetime, help someone.