Because I’m HAPPY! Happy People Are More Productive

Do you ever wonder why we are happier on Fridays or when we hear a song we love or when we are eating our favorite foods?

The Keynote Speaker, Catherine A. Sanderson, Ph.D, talked about Happiness. I really enjoyed it. Actually a lot more than I thought I would. I consider myself to be a happy person, a glass half full, an optimist that tries to see the best in everything and everyone. The question I always wondered, was I born like this or can anyone just be naturally happy.

Come to find out, Happiness is 50% genetic and the other 50% is from our own doing. Again, looking at it from the glass half full, that is incredible, every one of us can choose to be happy. I have always believed attitude is a choice. Life is 1% what happens and the other 99% is our choice in attitude in how we deal with it. If something does not go our way, we can choose to get really upset or we can choose to smile, say that is not who I am just my circumstance, and not let it define me or bring me down. Attitude will always be our choice.

Below is Catherine’s 10 Strategies to Increase Your Happiness

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10 Strategies to Increase Your Happiness
  1. Change your behavior – Get enough sleep, exercise regular, spend time outside, eat healthy, meditate.
  2. Find your match – Personal, professional, volunteer, find your mission and what drives you – scale of sensation (high arousal vs low arousal) – If you are high arousal (jumping out of a plane), make sure you match to that.
  3. Read a book you love
  4. Perform Random Acts of Kindness – Volunteer, charity, give a gift.
  5. Spend money on the right things – experiences are where happiness resides more than belongings as they have no value and are fleeting – NOTE: I am making sure my wife reads this one and may post signs of it EVERYWHERE.

    One thing my wife & I decided to do when we got married was instead of gifts for Birthdays & Christmas was to create memorable experiences in lieu of. We have done concerts, a weekend at the BIltmore, a cooking class, a dancing class, couples massage and other things we can do together.

  6. Smile (even when you aren’t happy) – Does not have to reflect how you feel – can actually change how you feel. Tony Robbins talks about changing your state and it can change your mood. I am a big believer in changing your thoughts. For me, I think of my son and us hanging out or playing a sport together and I automatically can not hold back a smile. My father ALWAYS had a smile on his face regardless of situation or circumstance and wanted to try to impact SOMEONE else’s life.
  7. Gratitude Journal – What are you thankful for NOW – can not be something from the past or even worse, what you will be grateful in the future if something happens. Do not wait for that promotion, right job, or right partner to be happy.
  8. Make a Gratitude Visit – Someone who changed your life – we typically wait until someone is dead before we tell them what they meant to us, how they helped us grow through a Eulogy. Don’t wait.
  9. Avoid Comparisons – Comparison is the thief of joy – Fakebook (Loved this) everyone only shares the good things on there. I always remember that it could always be worse. Whatever circumstance you are going through someone out there would be happy to trade you for what you think is bad. That is why it is so important to volunteer for charity to keep your life in perspective.
  10. Build & Maintain Close Relationships – This is the most important one. The older I get, the more I realize this. It is not the quantity but the quality.