The place where true happiness seems to be almost extinct today is in business. People are so serious. They are afraid to show their playful sides. When they do use humor it is in a caustic, sarcastic way. They offend others with jokes, stories or gags that demean, diminish and belittle. Laughter seems to be at the expense of another. This is not happiness. This is extremely sad behavior and only serves to indicate the level of unhappiness a person must truly feel to find humor in another person’s misfortune.
Recent studies of people applying for jobs show people are more focused on finding job satisfaction and happiness than strictly following the dollars. Studies further show that the vast majority of people would choose to “live in a society with the greatest happiness rather than the greatest wealth.” Companies that are known for creating a happy environment for their employees find they have greater job retention, less sick time taken, greater creativity and productivity from their employees. In fact studies show that happy people are “healthier, more confident, creative, dynamic, productive, satisfied, powerful, and resilient.” Believe me people notice happy people and the energy they exude is contagious.
Feeling we have an impact on our world and that we are appreciated for what we bring to the table are two important ways to have more happiness in one’s life. According to Jennifer Aaker, General Atlantic Professor of Marketing at Stanford Graduate School of Business “New research shows there is a strong correlation between happiness and meaning—in fact, having a meaningful impact on the world around you is actually a better predictor of happiness than many other things you think will make you happy.” She goes on to say “When we can cultivate mindfulness and meaning in all that we do including our work, we have the opportunity to influence not only our own well-being, but also the well-being of our family, friends, coworkers and wider community.” This goes back to what His Holiness said that when one is truly happy they are more willing to help others. If you are not finding meaning in your current job then go out and volunteer your time in an area where you can feel you make a difference.
A pat on the back also goes a long way to help people feel happy. To know that they are not only making a difference but that their contribution is noticed and appreciated. This is so important. Happy people see the good things around them. They see the world through a different filter. They come from an attitude of gratitude. They are able to find the humor in themselves and they laugh more and smile more. My grandfather always told me, never leave home without a smile. I truly live by this. He used to say “a smiling face is a welcoming face.” It is so true. Happiness is a daily decision and a daily journey. There are always things that crop up that can take you out of happiness for a while. Only you can decide if you are going to let that someone or something keep you from being happy for long. Or are you going to get yourself right back on the happy track.
The late Mark McCormack once said: “Laughter is the most potent, constructive force for diffusing business tension. If you point out what is humorous or absurd about a situation or confrontation, you will have the upper hand.” Increase your laughter. Use appropriate humor to cope and provide perspective during challenging situations. Use humor for positive, uplifting, healing and kind purposes. Take your work seriously but take yourself lightly.
When you make a choice to be truly happy you will see huge shifts in your life on all levels. So what are some of the steps you can take to get Happy now? Think positive thoughts. Smile. Surround yourself with happy, uplifting people. Be kind to yourself and others. Be mindful. Love yourself by taking good care of yourself. Treat yourself as the treasure you are. Forgive yourself and others. Take the time to compliment the people around you. Be generous with your time and energies. Remember that true happiness is contagious. When you make a choice to be happy you will have a powerful effect on those around you.
Watch the video below to listen to Pharrell Williams sing one of my favorite tunes. You just can’t be down for long when you hear this song.
Here’s to finding your true purpose in life—Be Happy!