We might have to get a little more creative given that we are still feeling the impacts of the Covid-19 Pandemic, but pursuing happiness is still possible. In fact, it is probably even more important this year.
With the 4th of July just around the corner, now is a wonderful time to remind yourself to pursue happiness. At Choice, we truly believe that the happy employee is the successful employee. Throughout my 24-year career of bringing out the best in professionals, I have seen the evidence time and time again.
Unfortunately, most people have it backwards. They think that they will be happy once they are successful. That kind of happiness is typically short-lived and limiting. The truth is, you will find success once you are happy. If you have ever heard yourself say or think the following statements: “I’ll be happy when…” or “if only…”, this article is for you.
Happiness really is a choice. There is a reason this quote hangs on the walls in our office. It’s also the reason we chose the name “choice” for our business. It is something you can choose to actively cultivate. And, when you realize you have a choice, you become empowered. Here are a few ideas on how to pursue happiness this summer:
Practice gratitude. The positive psychology movement is based on the incredible impact gratitude can have on our lives. Even though times are hard, if we look, there is always something to be thankful for. Our brains are programmed to look for danger (you probably don’t need me to remind you of that right now). Choose gratitude to offset this negativity bias by jotting down 3-5 things a day you are thankful for. Once you start this process, your brain starts noticing more things to be thankful for and you start to feel more positive.
Or, just take out your phone and text a thank you message to someone who means a lot to you. There’s no better way to make a co-worker or associate feel valued than a well-timed word of appreciation and you will benefit as well. Now is a great time to stop and thank a member of our armed forces or someone on the front-lines of this pandemic for their service.
Practice self-care. Now, more than ever, taking care of yourself is critically important. You need your self-care to manage all of the additional stress you have been facing, and to keep your immune system strong. Get those workouts in, aim to sleep 7-8 hours per night and eat well. Know your warning signs and what your triggers for stress are. Instead of ignoring the early signs, start implementing stress management strategies (mindfulness/meditation, humor, music, nature, etc.) that will work best for you. Truly happy and successful individuals know their warning signs of stress and what to do to get back to being centered and calm.
Practice mindfulness or meditation. Mindfulness means being in the present moment in a non-judgmental way and meditation is a way to get you there. Staying present wards off regret and sadness from the past and worry and anxiety about the future. The most successful people in any industry have some sort of mindfulness practice because they know it helps them stay happy, perform better, make stronger decisions, be a more inspirational leader, focus, fight disease, and sleep well. We can’t recommend it enough!
Get outside. Being outside has an extremely positive impact on our overall well-being. Take advantage of the fact that your chances of getting the virus decrease when you are outside. Spend more time in nature. Listen to the birds, watch a sunset, take a walk/hike, or go to the beach or lake.
Do something kind. Intentional kindness is a terrific way to choose happiness. Donate to a food bank or charity that speaks to your heart, stand up for someone you see is being discriminated against, check in on someone who has been going through this pandemic alone, or listen to a co-worker who seems like they aren’t themselves right now. As the saying goes, “a bit of fragrance clings to the hand that gives the rose.”
Spend time with loved ones. Make sure to keep this important activity on your calendar. Time and time again my clients tell me the extra time with family members has been the silver-lining to this pandemic. Our connections are even more important to our overall well-being right now. Plan outside visits with those you care about and soak in the love and connection. I know I am looking forward to extra time with family and friends over this holiday weekend 😊.
Pursue your passion. It’s hard to be happy if you are in a job or career you are not passionate about. Use this pandemic pause to take the time to slow down and really investigate what you were put on this planet to do.
Use your vacation days. Study after study shows that Americans are not using their vacation days and the result is more burnout, depression, suicide, sick days and lost productivity. Spend time away from work and watch your productivity soar for weeks after you return. Although you may have limited travel options right now, if you think about it, there are a multitude of fun things you can do that are right in your own neighborhood or county. Now’s the time.
Feel free to contact us if you would like a partner to support you in your effort to pursue happiness. It’s written in the Declaration of Independence for a reason!
Wishing you all the best for a HAPPY and HEALTHY 4th of July!
If you know someone who would benefit from this information, please feel free to pass it along. In addition, they can visit our website at: www.choicetrainingandcoaching.com to sign up to receive our emails.
Happiness is a choice.
Janine Friedman, MSILR, SPHR, SHRM-SCP,
Owner, Choice Training and Coaching Solutions
“Empowerment begins when people realize they have a choice.”
Janine Friedman is the owner of Choice Training and Coaching Solutions, Inc. Launched in 2013, its mission is to inspire and empower individuals to live their best lives. Janine possesses a complementary blend of experience in human resources, Employee Assistance Programs (EAP), corporate upskilling and coaching, and women’s empowerment.
Developing leaders for over 24 years, Janine’s customized system of coaching is tailored to each client’s specific personality, background and needs. She is an engaging and inspirational speaker, conducting training programs that are both educational and memorable. She excels at delivering her message with enthusiasm and clarity, resulting in better learning and deeper understanding.
Janine is passionate about supporting women who are struggling to achieve success in the workplace and in life. She is able to provide the tools necessary to help women develop competence and confidence as well as explore behaviors that may be holding them back.