You may have heard the 1975 disco song, Jive Talkin’ by the legendary Bee Gees.

While it makes for a terrific dance song, it’s not so good when it’s what you tell yourself about your life and your potential. What we refer to as “Self-Talk,” that internal dialog we have with ourselves, which we sometimes refer to as thinking, could be more accurately be called “Jive Talk’,” because that’s what it is.

We’re “jiving” ourselves with a steady internal dialog of negative statements and unproductive commentary about the conditions in our life.

woman worried about futureThe majority of people, unfortunately, spend their waking hours having a running negative dialog in their heads. They lament about the things they didn’t do, the opportunities they missed, and what they “wish” they did.

They then shift to the present where their internal dialog turns to what’s wrong with them, their spouse, the company, the government, and the world in general.

From there, if there’s any time left, they can worry about the uncertain future they’re facing, the diseases they “could” suddenly be stricken with, and what may or may not happen in some future time.

And they then want to know why they’re not happy! How could anyone be happy after listening to all that?

They’re defending their limitations in a limitless universe. As author, Richard Bach wrote, ”Argue for your limitations and sure enough they’re yours.

The unfortunate and sad part about this is that our subconscious mind does not know that these things we are telling ourselves are things we do not want to attract so it brings us more of the same.

Your subconscious mind takes everyhing you say literally and acts upon it. And it does not recognize opposites so, for example, saying “I don’t want to be broke,” is perceived as “I want to be broke” by your sunconscious mind and, the obedient servant it is, it goes about making sure you stay broke.

My colleague Eckhart Tolle wrote in “A New Earth” that, what happens is not the cause of our unhappiness, it’s the story we’re telling ourselves about what happened. If you want to stop feeling unhappy, start telling yourself a different story.

Turn your jive talk into power talk by writing a new story about your life, as you would like it to be.

Create some simple affirmations – positive, empowering statements – to reinforce your new story.

Statements like, “I’m becoming healthier and more fit each day” will go a long way toward your making better health choices.

If you want more money, a statement like, “I see opportunities to attract money daily and am becoming wealthier and wealthier” is a whole lot better than, I’m never have any money,” which is what many people are saying and conditioning their minds with.

The first and most important step in changing any condition in your life, whether it’s health, finances, relationships, career, or any other area, is to start writing a new story about how you want things to be.

Stop reinforcing the same old tired tale of woe you’ve been telling yourself all along and write your new vision for your life in all its glory.

If you want to see faster and more dramatic results, get a coach. Working with a life or business coach is the best investment you can make in your own success.

There are coaches of every kind available to meet every need and budget. You can usually schedule a complimentary “get acquainted” call to ensure you’re a good fit for each other.

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Let’s talk. I offer a free 20-minute telephone/Skype conversation to determine if we are a good fit for a coaching relationship.

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“Unhappiness is an ego-created mental-emotional disease that has reached epidemic proportions. It is the inner equivalent of the environmental pollution of our planet.” Eckhart Tolle

When I first read this statement in Tolle’s book, A New Earth (2006 Plume), I bought the book. I was browsing in a bookstore when I saw the book, which several people suggested I read, but for some reason had avoided doing so.

When I opened the book to the quote above it was like a bell went off inside my head. I immediately saw the connection the statement has to my task of bringing the happy@work message to people everywhere; a message that people deserve to be happy at work and can learn ways to be happier, regardless of circumstances. And, if that were not enough, companies are learning that happy people are more engaged and, thus, more productive, resulting in higher revenue. Everyone wins!

happy at work seminar images.011As companies invest in employee wellness and performance programs they will begin to reap the rewards of a highly productive, engaged workforce who, as an added benefit, are less likely to leave.

I’m not sure how we got to the place where so many people are unhappy. The level of employee engagement and satisfaction in the American workplace is presently, according to the Gallup organization, a mere thirty percent.

This is pretty dismal and, personally, I do not see how we are to remain a world economic power if this is allowed to continue. It’s time for us all to come together, employees and owners alike, and start changing the tone of the workplace in America.

Companies need to reinstate the employee development programs that were once commonplace and do their part in reengaging their people.

Employees need to start taking part in their own happiness and well being. Regardless of what your company is doing or not doing there are numerous steps you can take to be happier, more engaged and, ultimately, more successful. There are 60 simple ways in my “happy@work” book alone.

Where can we begin?

If you listen to Shawn Achor, author of the Happiness Advantage, you’ll learn what he and his pals at Harvard discovered; that intelligence and education represent only 25% of your potential for long-term success.

The more important predictors, representing the remaining 75% are your beliefs, who you associate with, and your attitude. If this sounds similar to what those of us in the personal development field have been saying all along it’s because it is. On top of that, every major religion and spiritual study agrees.

The huge difference now, and what makes Achor’s findings so important is that now we can not only scientifically prove what people like me have been saying for years, but we can understand why it’s true and, therefore replicate the results across groups of people.

Next steps

Now that we know all this cool stuff (my scientific explanation:-) and we understand how to make ourselves and others happier, and we know that people in a positive state are more effective, engaged, intelligent, creative, and happy, the giant task ahead for anyone who wants to take up the challenge, is to spread this message to people wherever we can reach them.

The area where I have been guided to serve is in the workplace. With the book “happy@work” and our companion workshops and coaching programs we can help companies and their employees re-engage and improve happiness and productivity.

If the folks in your workplace would benefit from an injection of happiness, ask about our “happy@work” workshop and coaching programs, designed to increase engagement, productivity and happiness throughout the organization. 

We all need to do what we can to be happier and help those around us to become happier. If you’ve read any of my books or any other self-help information you know how to feel happier at any time. Now we need to teach this to the, roughly, 95% of the people who do not.

 

Have you ever felt like you just can’t take it any longer? I’m guessing you have.

Sometimes the pressures of our modern day life, balancing work and family life, handling what seem like ever increasing financial pressures, worrying about your health or that of a loved one and on and on, are more than most people can handle.

missy

A pet not coming home for a few days, as has been our experience this week with our cat Missy (shown above), can cause intense emotional stress as you wonder and worry if she is okay and agonize over whether she will or will not be coming back.

These types of situations will occur. There’s no doubt about it. The more important issue is how will you deal with them when they do?

In any situation, particularly one’s involving intense emotion, the best thing you can do is become Present. Presence is the Now; the only time that actually exists.

“When the basis for your actions is inner alignment with the present moment, your actions become empowered by the intelligence of Life itself.” Eckhart Tolle, A New Earth

The more you can focus your attention on being in the Now, the less stress you will feel. This is because the source of your ill feelings are the result of your mental projections as to what “might” happen or what “could” happen.

It’s important to notice that none of what you’re worried about “is” happening or “has” happened. This is especially true when it comes to the financial worries most people spend their days agonizing over. Most financial concerns have to do with future financial security.

Even if an intense situation is occurring in your life right now, the only way you can access the mental resources necessary to resolve it is to remain in the present.

I realize that doing this is easier said than done. Here are some things you can do to help:

Breathe
Taking a few slow, steady, deep breaths will help you focus your attention on the here and now.

Detach
Detach emotionally from whatever is taking place. Simply observe it.

Accept
Accept what you can’t change

Act
Take action on those things you can change

Look
The law of Polarity teaches us that we cannot have a need without also having the solution to fulfill the need. You cannot have a left without a right or a top without a bottom. Look around and see what resources you already have, right now, that will help with your situation.

Trust

This is where you rely solely on your faith and trust that everything will work out. It will. It always does.

The idea of living “One day at a time” can make life a lot less stressful. Be present. Live in the now.

 

We believe that we should work to be happy, but could that be backwards? In this fast-moving and entertaining talk, psychologist Shawn Achor argues that actually happiness inspires productivity.

If this theme sounds familiar it may be because I’ve been saying essentially the same things for almost twenty years.

As more and more people get this idea, and use it to start living their authentic happiness, we’ll begin to see significant improvements in, not only the economy, but, more importantly, how people feel at work and at home.

If you haven’t seen this TED talk with Shawn Achor, happiness expert and the author of the Happiness Advantage, it’s well worth watching.

Here’s what he says at about 6:13 into it:

See what we’re finding is it’s not necessarily the reality that shapes us, but the lens through which your brain views the world that shapes your reality. And if we can change the lens, not only can we change your happiness, we can change every single educational and business outcome at the same time. Shawn Achor

 

 

Are you up to take the 21 day challenge? Here’s a recap of what he’s suggesting in the video:

• Write three new things that you’re grateful for for 21 days in a row. Three new things each day. And at the end of that, your brain starts to retain a pattern of scanning the world, not for the negative, but for the positive first.

Journaling about one positive experience you’ve had over the past 24 hours allows your brain to relive it.

• Exercise teaches your brain that your behavior matters.

• Meditation allows your brain to get over the cultural ADHD that we’ve been creating by trying to do multiple tasks at once and allows our brains to focus on the task at hand.

Random acts of kindness are conscious acts of kindness. We get people, when they open up their inbox, to write one positive email praising or thanking somebody in their social support network.


 

To inquire about our happy@work seminar, training and coaching programs, developed to help increase happiness, engagement, and productivity in the workplace, please contact us.

Please post your comments, questions and experience above.

 

There is no such thing as a problem without a gift for you in its hands. You seek problems because you need their gifts. Richard Bach, Illusions, 1977.

Please read the above quote again and really let its meaning sink in. Then read the second quote from the legendary motivational master, Jim Rohn.

When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.

When you put these two ideas together you’ll begin viewing so called “problems” for what they really are – opportunities for growth, change, and new possibilities.

staten island bay

In the case of your career or business, what you’ve been viewing as a problem may well be your greatest opportunity. If you read biographies of successful people you’ll soon realize how many of our most successful companies and products were born out of adversity or what many would have dismissed as a “problem.”

I wrote in happy@work about the time Domino’s was slammed by their customers for having terrible pizza. Rather then try to “spin” the story they stepped up acknowledged the problem publicly and seized the opportunity to revamp their recipes. As a result of honesty they reconnected with their customers in an even bigger way. They took what many would have backed away form and embraced it as a challenge to do better.

Others have taken so called problems and used them to devise new distribution strategies, manufacturing practices and marketing channels.

Many years ago Tupperware was faced with what may have been seen as an insurmountable marketing problem – people had to be taught now to use their product. The original Tupperware had to be “burped” in order to seal the container and people needed to be shown how to do it. How could they possibly do that in a retail sales environment?

In fact, they could not. Faced with failure right from the start the company, now a household brand, devised a strategy to sell their new product through home demonstrations and the American public soon experienced a rage in “Tupperware Parties,” whereby participants were taught the proper method of using the food storage product.

Not only did Tupperware go on to become a hugely successful company to this day but was largely responsible for a home party marketing strategy that has been copied by hundreds of other companies since.

What is it you’re seeing as a problem that, if you were to view it differently, could become an opportunity?

How else can you view whatever you’re perceiving as a problem in your life right now?

For more tips and ideas like this to help you in your life and career, check out happy@work – 60 Simple Ways to Stay Engaged and Be Successful