You have the choice to start behaving in a way that makes you happy, which will lead to more productivity.
Happiness can seem elusive, out of reach. Sometimes, as entrepreneurs, we lose sight of what we value most, our cup gets empty, and we lose the sense of happiness.
You can personally create your path to happiness
There are three essential things that all people need to achieve their fullest potential in relation to contributing to the workplace.
- Autonomy to grow and have a sense of freedom
- Contributing – show our competence
- Affiliation – connection and community so that you don’t feel isolation and loneliness
The burning platform of change means you have to take action and create change.
Your happiness in your work depends on autonomy, contribution, and affiliation.
When those three things are present, we feel happy, we feel like our cup is full. Then we will produce our best work.
In producing our best work, we create reinforcement.
Happiness is the pathway to productivity but then there is a self-reinforcing loop once we begin producing what we want. It is also motivating to produce the results you desire.
Change your behavior and don’t wait for someone else to change
Rita wrote the book, Show Up Positive to address changes in the corporate climate resulting from Covid. During Covid, we lost community and autonomy.
Commiserating quickly becomes complaining and when we start complaining, it starts a snowball effect of complaining and it erodes relationships within your business and in relationships. Comparison, doubt, and imposter syndrome escalate when complaining takes over conversations.
Biologically we are programmed to need to know danger for survival. We are preconditioned, self-alert, to things that put us in danger, including our self-worth. And we give more attention to the negative things than positive ones – Negativity Bias.
The only way to overcome the negative is to insert the positive. Rita used the analogy from The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey, build a bank account with good messages so that when negative things happen you don’t go into the red.
Show up positive and find happiness
In Show Up Positive, Rita provides 50 words that you can use to fill your own cup, not to change someone else, but to fill your own cup and experience happiness. Use your own strength from within. This may not be instantaneous, but we all have the ability to change.
The more work we do to change the negative to the positive, the more likely we are to change the neuropathways in our brains. Only then will we be able to see more positives than negatives. This becomes daily work. It isn’t a one-and-done. We have to create the change.
When you practice paying attention to your own cup, you start noticing things in other people. You can reflect the beautiful things you see in the world back onto others like a mirror.
Gratitude exchange to improve happiness levels
Sit and write gratitude notes. Then talk about what you felt in your body as you wrote the gratitude note. You may feel relief from stress, you may smile, and you may feel lightness. Before you’ve handed off the note, you’ve already filled your own cup.
Robyn encourages you to write down three things at the end of every day that you are grateful for. Adopting this practice will help you sleep better and notice the blessings in your life, even the things that felt like failures. There is always something to be grateful for. Always.
Misery loves company until people grow tired of being miserable.
We have habits of exchanging our misery and it’s like the toilet bowl that sucks you down. It takes the joy out of your environment.
This is not a sprint, it is a transformation through consistent practice. One small change can lead to BIG change.
About Rita Ernst
Rita owns the business consulting practice, Ignite Your Extraordinary. She focuses on organizational psychology and the behaviors of people, from the perspective of what human beings need to come together to be more productive.
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