Radiating Sunshine: Happier You: An Overview

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Happier You: An Overview

Happy Wednesday Friends!

Today, I'm finally writing my first post for my Happier You Project! Back in November, I decided to start researching ways to make my life happier and more productive. I came up with twelve different areas of my life that I wanted to work on over the course of the next twelve months. I divided them divided up by month, just to keep me organized and on track. The months were selected intentionally because of life events, however throughout the year I'm keeping all of my happy goals in mind. So, today I am updating you all on where I found the inspiration.

These books have been influential in organizing, planning, and executing my Happier You project. The consistent themes that all three of these books capitalize on are these: You choose happiness, happiness will literally improve all aspects of your life, and happiness starts now.

Happiness has been sought after my literally everyone. People are always looking for the key to happiness, but what I have found is that the key is you. All of these books offer great insight into happiness and I would highly recommend you read them.

The Happiness Advantage- Shawn does an amazing job showing how happiness can not only improve your life, but build up your work performance. One of my favorite quotes from this book is "simply believing we can bring about positive change in our lives increases motivation and job performance; that success, in essence, becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy" (Anchor, 74). This book holds great insight into my professional life and I look forward to incorporating his ideas and tips into my work as a supervisor. After all, no one wants to work for someone who is negative or fosters a negative environment. Another aspect that I love about this book is that Shawn uses real life examples and studies to further his evidence! I found the studies he mentioned fascinating and am currently preparing a presentation for my RAs on how simply having a positive outlook on their work will improve their outcomes!

The Happiness Project- I wish Gretchen and I could be best friends. I know she is a married, New York City dwelling, mom and writer/blogger but her book and project was so down right inspiring. She even gives a full tutorial on how to start your own Happiness Project! I loved all of her chapters on ways to make your life happier. My favorite chunks of advice she gave are: de-clutter your life, give to others, hug more & hug for longer then 3 seconds (come here Josh), "be as eager for Mondays as you are for Friday," act with intrinsic motivation, make to do lists for life, and enjoy the journey. Thanks Gretchen for all of your insight and if this little campaign of mine every makes it on your radar I would love to talk on the phone with you... or have coffee... or just be your best friend.

The How of Happiness- Sonja wrote a beautiful book about happiness is changeable and based on your present situation. This book was also quite educational and can be applied to LITERALLY anyone. Sonja covers topics from finding companionship to struggling with depression. I also found Sonja's advice on social comparisons and struggles to be really insightful... every day we experience stress and insecurities. However Sonja encourages popular advice for chronic over thinkers and that's to: "break free, move to higher ground, and avoid future traps." So, stop comparing yourself to others, because no one else is you!

All of these books talk to some extent of practicing kindness! They aren't the cliche happy self-help books that you see in every library or book store. They are real and useful guides to happiness that aren't afraid to call out off days or moments in your life when you want to have a crummy attitude.

I know I won't be a beacon of happiness on this Happier You project. Trust me, just yesterday I found myself sulking in my office about all of the heat issues in my building. Life throws curve balls and difficult situations every day. But, the key to happiness is feeling confident that you can handle all of that and looking at those struggles with a positive frame of mind (intrinsically decided upon).

That's all for now folks! Check back on Thursday for a full update on January's resolutions.

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Remember, "every time you smile at a someone, it is an action of love, a gift to that person, a beautiful thing"- Mother Teresa

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