In Search of Happiness

It’s suddenly becoming obvious to me that there are people around me who are working tirelessly to help others stay happy! It comes to me as a bit of a shocker, why, because everyone today is caught up in our own little world and we are only focused on what we have to do! Unless I make an effort to be happy, I would not expect someone else trying to make this difference for me!

In 350BC, Aristotle suggested that happiness, and happiness alone, was the sole purpose of human existence. But even the great philosopher himself was unable to describe precisely how to attain happiness, instructing his students to simply, “live a virtuous life”. Now, around 2,500 years later, happiness is still a relatively elusive concept.

Neuroscientists, physiologists, philosophers, motivationalists, innovators, you name it, have all spent decades trying to discover exactly what this mysterious emotion looks like in the brain, in the human emotion and in our thoughts, and the results are fuzzy at best! All that we know for sure is that the basic happiness triggers are food and sex, are found in the ‘subcortex’ and success, taking care of a family and looking forward to future pleasures are found in ‘neocortex’.

As I reflect on the triggers for happiness, I come across two specific areas that impact me, my personal life and my workplace. The more I explore and question, both these areas point towards one specific point, its about understanding my greater ‘purpose’ in what I want to do, whether it is in life or at my work.

I believe that we are blessed with God-given passions and this is why today, we see the world full of very different people, Musicians and artists and cooks and photographers, doctors, businessmen and teachers and preachers, and many more, all very different, but all full of passion for what they do!

How can I rekindle the fire that God instilled in me at birth? This is one of the greatest gifts that I am discovering He has given me and there is nothing more exciting than to listen to someone talk about their passion, and there is nothing more fulfilling than to put my passion to use in my daily life.

But what about the many of us who find it so hard to wake up in the morning and go to work joyfully? Why is it becoming more and more hard for many of us to find happiness at work? One of our struggles is that we look around and see a ‘successful’ individual (in our own personal definition of success), and attempt to duplicate their life. We are relying on other people to instill a passion within us and this will surely bring us to failure. I believe that God has already instilled a unique passion in us, that was made for each of us personally and it is up to us to find out what this passion is and how I can put it to use.

Unfortunately, humans just aren’t very good at working out what makes them happy

Dr Tali Sharot, neuroscientist and author of ‘The Optimism Bias: A Tour of the Irrationally Positive Brain’

In my search for what I can do for my organisation, I came across this amazing organisation, Delivering Happiness, evolved from a New York Times® Best Seller to the world’s first Culture coach|sulting™ [coaching + consulting] company. This company has pioneered to help engage employees to create happier, sustainable cultures for a more profitable business! Can you believe that such organisations exists! Their purpose is very clear, they want to “Inspire Passion and Purpose for a Happier World”. I am constantly reading about their ideas, they have amazing check-lists to help us understand what we are doing, and helps guide us in moving in a very positive way to bring happiness to our people as a priority, not something I have every considered as ‘priority’!

Restaurant chain ‘Nando’s’ ascribes a key factor in sales growth to how happy its staff are. Consequently, 50 per cent of each manager’s bonus is based on staff survey results and how happy the staff says they are

©LONDON Business school review Issue 2 – 2015

Passions are often reproduced by us but, they can never be truly duplicated. We can tell others that we want to do this, or we want to do that, but the fact of the matter is that if my “passion” does not fire me up, gets me out of bed, keeps me up at night, and takes my breath away at the mere thought of it, then it’s probably not MY passion.

A life lived without passion is no life at all. You cannot put a price on passion.

David Villa, CEO|Key note Speaker|Leadership & Sales Coach| Author

The Passion to add value in what we do is probably the biggest motivator within our lives. The passion to live our personal and corporate values is what keeps us going when everything around us starts to crumble. We are surrounded by so much distractions and we are brainwashed in doing what is so wrong, the sense that if I can live a life that is well-lived and, if I could spend my time living my values and doing something that brings me true happiness, makes my purpose in life so much more meaningful!

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