Monday, 3 September 2012

What work needs today is more happy people!

It's a grand time of the year here in the UK with all the young families getting back from their two week holidays in warmer climates. Gone are the stress lines now replaced with tans and smiles. It's a shame that within weeks the harsh penalties of commuting and struggling with tough economic conditions will eradicate most of the good that has been done.

This made me think of how do you go about doing the things that bring happiness and I reminded myself of that great TED Talk by Nic Marks, which really does deserve another airing.

I think what came out of Nic's research certainly makes sense to me and very relevant to my life. I know I think I am blessed with the happy gene, but perhaps it's also that I tend to do the things that will make anyone feel happy.

  • Stay connected - initially this was very hard when I retired from NestlĂ© where my busy life as a trainer meant I was almost permanently connected. My starting point was a loving family around me so I was never struggling, and over time I was able to reconnect with old friends, make new friends and new business pals and really never felt isolated.
  • Continuous (curiosity ) learning - I have always loved learning but now I really do follow my curiosity. The wonderful world of iPhones / iPads and Apps, learning how to develop web sites, plus as a BBQ and wok cook I gave myself the task of learning to cook 50 new dishes. Thanks to Delicious books and web site although completely out of my comfort zone I am really enjoying learning to cook.
  • Be active - in the spring of 2010 we bought Thandi our German Shepherd puppy. She is a lovely intelligent dog who I adore and walk every day regardless of the weather. Having a dog we know just makes people feel happy, and that plus the exercise does wonders for me.
  • Give to others - a wise person who knew me well advised that I do no charity work until after my first year away from NestlĂ©. They said establish your business first and then look for pro bono work, otherwise you will trade your busy work life for a busy charity one. After a year and a bit we started running leadership training for that wonderful charity Canine Partners. They do an amazing job, and in some small way I am able to help them and that makes me feel good about life.
  • Take notice of what's happening in the world - having more time means that I can read more and thanks to our digital subscription to the Times and Sunday Times and my fascination for so many things I take notice of what's happening around me.
Yes I am very happy and I realise that its actually what I do rather than my genetic wiring that makes this happen. This is the first time I have ever done this analysis and I think I need to bring more of this thinking into my coaching work. People need help!

What work needs today is more happy people!

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