Do you sometimes feel like you’re juggling too many balls at once? On Friday morning one of my clients sent me the link to a video of someone juggling with such style and grace that he is the picture of flow.
I was so mesmerized by the performance that I immediately forwarded the URL to about 200 hundred of my friends, family, and acquaintances. Within minutes the responses started to pour in: “Fantastic! Amazing! Freaking incredible! Simply awesome! It made me cry! It gave me a boost! I got into flow just watching! What a great way to start the day! It made me happy!” Given that response, I want to share the link with you, the readers of LifeTrek Provisions. It truly is the Must-See Finale of Chris Bliss juggling three balls, in perfect sync to music of the Beatles from their Abbey Road album.
It’s good to watch, hear, feel, and do things that make us happy. Happiness is vital to health and wellness. Numerous studies have made a connection between happiness, well-being, and longevity. The bottom line: happy people live both better and longer lives, with fewer health problems along the way. So it behooves us to get happy and to stay that way.
But can we really learn how to make ourselves happy? Or is happiness a given in life? Are we either born with the “happiness gene” or not? It’s the old nature versus nurture argument, and you can imagine what a coach would say about that. Of course we can elevate our happiness, regardless of the set point we may have genetically inherited! Nothing is predetermined such that our choices become irrelevant.
This is the conclusion not only of coaches but also of social scientists who are now researching and writing in the field of positive psychology. You may remember reading the article in Time magazine, published January 17, 2005, titled “The New Science of Happiness: What makes the human heart sing? Researchers are taking a close look. What they’ve found may surprise you.”. They confirm that people can elevate their happiness through surprisingly simple techniques. Here are a few they mention:
- Keep a Gratitude Journal. Write down three things you are thankful for on a daily basis.
- Make a Gratitude Visit. Write a thank-you letter to someone you have not fully thanked, then deliver and read it in person.
- Practice Acts of Kindness. It works particularly to set aside one day a week to do lots of nice things for people.
- Savor Life’s Joys. Don’t rush through the day or you may miss momentary pleasures and wonders. Savor them!
- Connect with Friends and Family. Strong personal relationships is the biggest single factor behind happiness.
- Care for Your Body. Healthy habits not only protect the body, they also enhance self-esteem and happiness.
You’ve read these tips before in LifeTrek Provisions. It’s good to know they have a solid scientific foundation. It’s also good to watch Chris Bliss juggle and listen to the Beatles sing. Chris put his entire self into that performance and became an embodiment of the final line in The End by John Lennon and Paul McCartney: “And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make. Ah!” May we all, make it so.
Coaching Inquiries: What makes you happy? Are there ways for you to be more actively engaged in the pursuit of happiness? How could your body become more connected to your heart and mind? Who could coach you to strengthen your happiness muscles? What are the happiness habits that you would like practice on a regular basis?
May you be filled with goodness, peace, and joy.
President, LifeTrek Coaching International, www.LifeTrekCoaching.com
CEO & Co-Founder, Center for School Transformation, www.SchoolTransformation.com
2010-2011 President, International Association of Coaching, www.CertifiedCoach.org
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