Posts Tagged ‘happy’

The Happy Pic is a Happy Brick

Tuesday, September 30th, 2008

This smiling brick came from Flickr user srboisvert.

Sorry, but there will be no happy quotes today (I need to go to bed).  Would you like to send a happy thought to me so that I can share it with other readers? Please do!

-MJ

Pace Yourself, Especially on Bad Days

Friday, September 12th, 2008
This is #12 out of 25 Tips to Become More Productive and Happy at Work.

Pace Yourself, Especially on Bad Days. Go slow. Don’t be in a hurry. Just take one thing at a time and keep moving forward. If you’re having a really low day, you might even want to take care of yourself by playing hooky !

I must respectfully disagree with this advice.  Sometimes you SHOULD be in a hurry – but being in a hurry with your actions or thoughts does not necessarily require you to be in a hurry with your emotions.  You can cultivate a sense of calm and joy within yourself even when you’re pressed for time, if you make a conscious, repeated attempt to do so.

-MJ

Transitions.

Tuesday, September 9th, 2008
This is #9 out of 25 Tips to Become More Productive and Happy at Work.

Transitions. Make sure you plan in enough time between activities and appointments, and find ways to fail proof being on time.

I always underestimate how much time I need to finish something, so I’m often rushing from place to place with no time to spare.  This lifestyle is strenuous, and it is not very happy OR productive.   I’m slowly learning to make more realistic assessments of how much time I have and how much time I need to achieve a goal.

I think the instruction to “make sure you plan in enough time between activities and appointments, and find ways to fail proof being on time” could be extended to include your emotions and relationships.  For example, a speedy transition from singleness to marriage would probably lead to problems down the road, if you and your partner haven’t taken time to develop a full understanding of one another.

Similarly, hurrying through the transitory stages of grief or failing to take enough time to adjust to moving to a new city might create more emotional or organizational disruptions for you than would have been created otherwise, if you took your time and eased through these processes.

-MJ

Drop Unimportant Tasks.

Monday, September 8th, 2008
 This is #8 out of 25 Tips to Become More Productive and Happy at Work.

Drop Unimportant Tasks. Delegate or delete the non-essential items from your to-do list. The best way to do this is to always do your most important things first. Somehow, miraculously, extraneous things will fall away.

Scratching things off my to-do list without even attempting to do them feels wonderful.   Delegation feels even better, because then the to-do is a to-done without my pinkie finger ever needing to lift.

-MJ

Accept That You’ll Never Finish Your Task List

Tuesday, September 2nd, 2008
This is #2 out of 25 Tips to Become More Productive and Happy at Work.

Today we’ll look at this this suggestion:

Accept That You’ll Never Finish Your Task List. For perfectionists and overachievers this is as frustrating as a greyhound forever chasing the mechanical bunny around the track. Get off that track. Just make sure you work on your most important stuff first. Let the fluff slide, not your priorities.

If you didn’t waste valuable time going down little roads to nowhere, pursuing activities that just don’t really matter, you would have more free time.  Then you would be able to say what ButterBeeHappy user mrsdonnad says in her happy thoughts: I’m enjoying “me” time.  Maybe like garyk, you would feel “gratefuller for waking up feeling calm,” because you’d accomplish your greatest priorities without allowing insignificant details to gnaw away at your mind.

Don’t forget to click on the picture above to read the cute story about that to-do list!

-MJ

The Power Question

Monday, September 1st, 2008

I found an article called “25 Tips to Become More Productive and Happy at Work” and decided to go through the tips one by one to see if they work for me.

Throughout the month of September I will chronicle this experiment right here, in this blog.   Are you ready for the first tip?  Here it is:

Power Question. Keep a question like this at your desk to help you stay focused: “Am I making the most of my time right now?” or “Is this the most productive use of my time?”

I have to ask myself questions like that all the time, because I tend to multitask too much and lose track of what’s most important.  But would spending .5 seconds every 5 minutes or so re-reading such a question actually make me more productive, and therefore, more happy?

What if you had to complete a task that, in your opinion, was a total waste of time?  Wouldn’t asking yourself that question frustrate you?

I’ll tell you what would make me feel good: instead of a power question at my desk, I would place a sign reading, “What you do is important.”  Feeling important and believing that we matter to the people around us is vital to our happiness and mental health (Dale Carnegie expresses this in his book “How to Win Friends and Influence People“), and may have a more positive direct impact on our emotional well-being than constantly questioning each of our jobs and tasks.

-MJ

Achieving Happiness: Ability to connect to others established in childhood

Friday, August 29th, 2008

 

 Love is a key ingredient of happiness. Having people in your life that care about you provides a deep feeling of security. Being in a relationship in which you and your partner are meeting one another’s needs is tremendously satisfying. However, there are several varieties of love – only one of which makes people happy.

Recently, researchers have provided an understanding of how an unhealthy pattern of parent-child love adversely affects an adult relationship. The attachment between a parent and child has been well researched. But it has only been in the last few years that researchers have found a way to help adults with a history of dysfunctional relationships have a healthy loving connection.

The research has revealed three patterns of parent-child attachment. Children have two basic drives – exploration and safety – that govern their behavior. Kids need to explore and their playful pursuits help them gain the skills they need for mastering their environment. But children also need to stay safe in order to survive.

Click here for the full article.

I have an idea that might make the world a happier place.

Try to smile at every child, even tiny babies, whenever they make eye contact with you.  Maybe that child will grow to feel like the world is a welcoming, optimistic place.  Maybe it will help that child grow up to be a happier person than he or she would otherwise.

-MJ

The Secrets To Happiness

Tuesday, August 19th, 2008

Daniel Gilbert, PhD, a Harvard psychologist, says that Americans do a tremendous amount of “miswanting.” We keep wanting things that will never make us happy. For example, practically everyone wants to be rich and thin. Yet, he points out, studies show that having enough money for the basic necessities of life–food, clothing, and shelter, which cost maybe $40,000 a year–is all we really need for happiness. The effect of the next $10 million is negligible.

This tells us that although we fervently believe that something we can touch, like piles of cash or cellulite-free thighs, is going to light up our hearts, the truth is that we usually don’t know what will make us happy. Worse, we don’t know that we don’t know, so we ardently pursue the wrong things.

Click here for the full article.

I think relationships provide an excellent example of miswanting.  Have you ever longed for or loved someone who actualy made you miserable?  I bet you have, or know someone who has.

Take as an example Philip*, whose girlfriend is hated by all his friends because she only uses Philip for his money, or Sonia*, whose boyfriend regularly cheats on her and verbally abuses her.  But Philip and Sonia say that they love their girlfriend and boyfriend, and want to remain with them, regardless of the misery these relationships cause.  I would call this miswanting – they desperately want and pursue someone who, ultimately, will not make them happy.

-MJ

*Names and situations are fictional.

Happy Chair!

Sunday, August 17th, 2008

 

I want to sit in the happy chair!  Heck, I even want to BEFRIEND the happy chair.

-MJ

Study: Green Plants Keep Office Workers Happier

Friday, May 23rd, 2008

 

If employers want to increase job satisfaction, a little shrubbery apparently goes a long way. Workers are happier when offices have plants and windows, a new study found.

American office workers spend an average of 52 hours a week at their desks, according to the 2000 U.S. Census.

Some might argue that not all that time is spent working, but still, all those hours in windowless offices with artificial light can take their toll.

A few green additions could have a large effect on worker happiness, according to the study led by Tina Cade, an associate professor of horticulture at Texas State University, and Andrea Dravigne of the San Marcos Nature Center.

“We pretty much found out that if you had windows and plants, or even if you just had plants in your office, you were more satisfied with your job,” Cade told LiveScience. “We thought it was important for offices because a lot of times people are looking for ways to keep employees happy and do all these expensive things like put in a daycare or a workout room. Maybe for less investment they could put in a few plants in strategic places.”

Click here for the full article.