Take 12 minutes to watch this TedX presentation, The Happy Secret to Better Work, by Shawn Achor. Way better than a latte: It's free, I learned something, and It made me laugh out loud. Achor (in an very entertaining way) explains how most things in life are tailored to the average and not the extraordinary. Our gifts are ignored and become invisible as outliers. Instead of gearing everything to the average, we should learn what those who are gifted and extraordinary know and do and move the graph line representing average up rather than trying to pull them down to the average..
In his book The Happiness Advantage, he gives tips on improving your level of happiness. None of these things takes very long, but can make a world of difference in your outlook. Do one of these exercises a day for 21 days (the length of time it takes to build a habit):
1) Write down three new things you are grateful for each day
2) Write for two minutes a day describing one positive experience you had over the past 24 hours
3) Exercise for 10 minutes a day
4) Meditate for 2 minutes, focusing on your breath
5) Write one quick email first thing in the morning thanking or praising someone in your social support network (family member, friend, old teacher)
These activities exercise your brain and rewire it to look for the positive. Each one only takes a couple of minutes. Nothing to lose, right?
3/29/2012 02:18:15 am
Thanks Claire. That's a brilliant video. And it's great to have the exercises set out in your post.
3/29/2012 03:09:55 am
Thank you for this post! I always need a reminder to meditate and writing a short note of gratitude to someone is very nice.
3/29/2012 11:12:33 pm
I am sorely tempted to pursue a Masters in Applied Positive Psychology at Penn -- It would be so cool to advance the research and share the tools that can help people be happier. For now I'll just continue to share the tools (and remember to practice them myself!)
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