How Happiness Becomes The Key of Success

Hello everyone,

On an ordinary day, I was browsing my ipad then I came across TED. You all may know, TED is the collection of inspiring talk from people around the globe. I found the talk by Shaun Achor: The happy secret for better work back from 2012.

It is such an entartaining talk, even so I captured in a moment by that. Not only that his talk is interesting and making sense, but also it’s happening in real life. I experienced it myself, I’m sure you have it too. Achor shared how happiness can inspire our productivity and how we can actually put it into practice. Let’s see if you can agree with him just like I do.

What is the real happiness

Most of us have goal or dream that actually lead us to be happy. We often being led by the external world that predict the happiness level as wealth, power, position, pride, ambition, etc. Our brain picks those example as happiness indicator.

In order to get what the world said as ‘happiness’, we need to work extremely hard because other people are chasing the same thing. It looks like ‘happiness’ is a limited thing that we need to fight each other over it.

The world even tell us how to get this ‘happiness’. In common world, it said that we need have great education background, long experience in top company, work to achieve the best performance, etc. The ones who succeed will be ‘happy’. And those who failed will be categorize as below average.

Even for the ones who finally reach the ‘happiness’ set by our environment, the feeling of happy actually will not last too long. For instance people said that we need to aim working in top companies. Then we start to compete with hundreds of others to get the position.

When we finally succeed it, we will be happy as we feel the privilege to be part of company where the others are dying to get. But around half a year later, most of us will no longer feel happy, instead we will feel stressful because of the workloads, the deadline, the pressure, etc.

So in fact the long term happiness cannot be something that the external world set for us, but instead it comes from our brain in the process of what the world should look like.

In another mean, the long lasting happiness comes from ourselves.

What should come first

Back to the external world most of us live in, it says that we must be successful, then we will be happy. But we know from the theory above, it actually doesn’t work like that in real life.

So what should we do? TED speaker Shaun Achor suggests to change the formula to happiness. So it’s not this:

work hard = succesful = happiness

Instead, it should be like this:

present life = happiness = successful

By reversing our mind set on which one should be the priority, it will change how we will act towards life.

Achor had research that 75% of productivity at work is not resulted from IQ, but from optimism, the abililty to handle stress and face the challenge instead of thread.

If successful is our source of happines, on the example before about a good job will make us happy, then how about if we already have a good job at the top company? Our brain will think, “what is next? change into a better job” and we will start the struggling all over again. The remaining question is: if this continues, will we be happy in the end?

In the other hand, if happiness is the key of success, our brain will never get to such questions.

Like I said, I experienced it myself once at work. I didn’t pay attention what people said how to be successful at work. I just set my own pack: let’s enjoy and work hard, listen to what I want to listen, do what I think I should do.

I enjoyed the job so much. I was at the top in terms of speed, performance, ideas, collaboration and so on. It just happened without forcing myself into out of limit. Later I realized that the key was that: I enjoyed the job.

Achor later said that if our brain works with the happiness of present, we will have so called as ‘happiness advantage’. It likes the brain is positive that it repels the negativity, so that the productivity, creativity, and optimism will rise.

How to train the happiness

These are simple things that can train your brain towards happiness that research found great result.

1. Gratitudes
Write down 3 things you are greatful for everyday in 2 – 3 weeks. It will allow your brain to think the positive first, not the negative.

2. Journaling
Putting at least one positive experience in the past 24 hours will elevate you.

3. Exercise
Exercise the brain teaches that your behaviour is matter.

4. Meditation
Even only two minutes everyday of meditation, it proves to focus strongly on one point and pay attention to all of the things happening around you.

5. Random act of kindness
Something simple like pressing one inbox to thank someone will support your role in social network

Now if we can set a goal for this training, let’s not only focus to increase our own happiness of sucess, but also to bring as many people with us. So get ready to train and share!!

And of course this is something that I picked, for all of us:

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Good luck,

chiyo