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Happiness

Warning: This post is neither one of the typical topics I deal with, nor base entirely on my own experiences. I still recommend reading it


Postitive Psychology. - Hadn't heard that for quite a time, until I just recently met Randall J. Birnberg.
He gave a talk at our local "Happy Day" event and about this Positive Psychology and reminded me, that this would be quite interesting for everyone to know. Therefor bare with me, if I take a bunch of content from his presentation.

The main aspect of Postitive Psychology is a shift in thinking. Classical Psychology always deals with the negative aspects of your live. Negative experiences, negative behaviours and routines, negative expectations and so on. Positive Psychology now completely turns the table and focuses on the positive aspects of our lives. It hands you routines and approaches to enrichen your live with more happiness, joy and productivity. A quote from Randall would be that classical psychologists could lose their jobs due to Positive Psychology, as no one would feel miserable enough to talk to them.

I will not dig into the backgrounds, theories and concepts - but I will hand you some of those routines and approaches, to enrichen your life with (these three routines are my favourites I am trying to get used to myself) :

1. Journal of Highlights
Every evening, preferably before you go to bed, write down the highlights of your day. Moments that made you smile, moments of laughter, moments of joy. You have had those moments - but we tend to forget them faster then all the negativity we experienced. Set yourself a goal - e.g. 3 highlights per day, and never ever let yourself drop below that treshhold!

2. Gratitude
Every day, every single day - express your gratitude to someone. The gesture of gratitude may be very small, and directed to whoever you want. But every day - show your gratefulness. Express it to your old teacher, in the form of a letter, a call - or a card. Bring your colleague a coffee, invite your friend to lunch or buy a homeless something to eat.

3. Harness your strengths
Doing what you're good at is always a reservoir of joy. Maybe combine it with the second approach and draw something, or write a song for someone you want to express your gratitude to. Of course you should still work on stuff your not that good at, but you'll be more motivated if you bathe in the fruits of your own success once in a while.

You probably have noticed, that those routines involve you doing something every day. This is the most important part. While you can use these methods to boost your daily motivation once in a while, their true strength only appears if you involve them in your daily routine. Every morning, write a letter of gratitude to someone. Every evening, write to your journal - and every day at work, support someone with the things only you can do (this good). Randall told us, that after 90 days a thing you do daily transitions into a routine. After those three months, you will permanently have increased your joy in life. Independent of money, the neighbours new car, or a genetically more pessimistic way of living - you will every day be motivated, successful and joyful in everything you do.

I dare you:
Take this challenge, like I do, and permanently improve your life's quality!

Cheers, Richard