Tag Archives: success coach

The 30-day happiness project

16 May

Written by Kirri White.  Follow me on twitter or facebook.

You can also contact me by email –  kirri@happymumsathome.com

Happiness lies less in our circumstances than in what we make of them (Author unknown).

Last week, I wrote about gratitude and how it can be a powerful tool for helping relieve depression (see here).  Coincidentally, for the past month, I have been involved in a “Happiness Project”, initiated by Naomi from Seven Cherubs.

Over 100 bloggers participated, keeping a one sentence record of our happiest moments for 30 days.  The aim was to heighten awareness of the types of things that promoted happiness and to see if keeping a daily record held any lasting effects.

My personal list is as follows, recorded from 10th April-10th May:

Today, I had an early morning combat class and experienced a rush of feel good endorphins instead of pain!

A rare solo drive today and as I rocked out to Stanton Warriors “Get up” the big blue sky smiled with me.

Pure joy=a cup of freshly brewed java and a moment of solitude watching the sunrise.

Parent-teacher interviews; so reassuring to learn that my baby girls are settling well into their first year at school.

My girls and I created our own less skillful but way more-hilarious “Thriller” dance tonight and are now all MJ lovers!

So happy that my youngest has stopped throwing up and the rest of us remain well….fingers crossed.

A weekend of kiddy birthday parties – too much squealing and junk food, but so much fun!

Don’t ask me why I have been up at 4.30am every day this week, but as for the amount of work I’ve completed…yeeyah!

Today I was given a handmade card from darling-heart daughter letting me know how ‘greatful’ she is to have me in her ‘live’!

My hubby looks super fine today and is smiling….at me.

Super hyped to wake up this morning and discover I had been acknowledged for my writing skills by a complete stranger.

A long overdue skype catch up with one of the most spectacular friends equals huge smiles for rest of day!

Today my big girl turns seven and apparently it is the Biggest.News.Ever.

I know that Easter is not all about chocolate but sheesh, I love nibbling on easter bunny ears!

Caught up with beautiful Lucy today and felt more invigorated than ever about living life hard.

Remember how much fun it was, being able to ride your new bike round the neighbourhood?

Cool morning, hot day, magical sunset.

Teaching kids new stuff can be so much…..messy fun!

Sharing in someones vision is great, helping them achieve it in three months, fantabulous.

New dress and an opportunity to get glammed up…yay!

I miss dad extra today but am so grateful for all that he taught me and all the love he shared.

So many exciting possibilities forming on the work-front…butterflies anyone?

It can be daunting meeting new peeps and making new friends but I think I did just that today.

Gym time is my time is good time!

Cool enough this evening to enjoy a warm bowl of spicy pasta and a gorgeous glass of Beaujolais.

I can’t even tell you why I am flying high today.  It’s a secret but just know I am…flying high.

A blanket, my lap-top and working in sunshine.

My dinners always seem like rubbish compared to cheffy hubbys; lucky he has cooked the past three nights!

Learnt today that my mum and big sister are still there to pick me up when I most need it.

When neighbours become best friends…so happy we landed right here.

From my list (and the many others I have been reading), it is often the simple things that impart the most pleasure -family, friends and meaningful connection.  Acts of service, being outdoors, good food and keeping active were also highly relevant factors for promoting positivity.

For me, the project highlighted the fact that personal happiness is rarely related to material pleasures.  Happiness can easily be observed in the small moments, and for me, committing to record these happy thoughts on an ongoing basis, increased my happiness quotient.

~ Thanks for reading and have a happy day!

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Why thinking and living like a kid can lead to a happier, more successful life.

25 Feb

Last week, I was confronted by the identical challenge I face every time I attempt to make pasta sauce. 

No, not the fact that I would need to bury the empty jar deep in the recycling bin, to avoid the meaningful looks directed my way by cheffy husband – who can never understand why I don’t just whip up my own sauce.  Pfft.It is the dance of trial and tribulation that ensues every time I attempt to take the top off the jar.  Bloody impossible!! 

I twist it both ways, wringing until my hands are as pink as my face. I then use a tea towel in an effort to assist sweaty sore hands, run the jar under cold, then hot water, bang it on the granite bench and as a last resort mutter a few not-so-niceties about the jar making machine having been designed by some puny-female-hating mean man!

As my efforts become more desperate, I notice one of my darling twin daughters silently observing me.  Approaching me quietly, she places a reassuring hand on my leg (being far too mini to reach my shoulder) and speaks to me with knowing calmness –

“It’s ok mummy. You can do it. I know you can. You just have to believe in yourself.”

How cute is she?  The cutest. Of course.              

I couldn’t help but recognise the familiar words of positive persuasion, borrowed from Winx Club.  Winx Club is an animated Italian television series which we discovered in Canada two years ago.  It follows the adventures of a girl Bloom and her fairy friends, on earth and the Magical Dimension.  Our whole family loves it.  We have taken on individual fairy personas (yes even daddy) and like to spout the theme song, regularly –

Close your eyes,
and open your heart.
Believe in yourself,
that’s how it starts.
Dreams will come true,
just wait and see
Cause the Magic’s in you,
and the magic’s in me!

 Anyway, it got me thinking (in addition to the fact that I really must increase my weights in pump class); about the magical way children view the world.  More specifically, the manner in which their behavior is a timely reminder on how to be more relaxed and present in our lives. 

And so, I present you with the following list of tips for successful living that I have garnered from my children.  Yes, although my girls are aged 4 and 6 – they are budding experts in the area of positive psychology.  Just ask them.   

The list is in no particular order but I dare you to live like a child for a day, or a week, and see how things pan out.  If you don’t feel like you are experiencing more fun, passion, learning and connection with the important people and priorities in your life, you are quite welcome to come and kick my ass!  Well, not mine actually, but my girls.  This is their list after all and I am merely the messenger.

  • Believe in yourself.  Children don’t place limits on themselves the way adults do. They live in a world where anything is possible and nothing cannot be conjured up with a little imagination.  They are fearless and like to take risks.  Tell them they can’t do something and you know they will attempt it, just to prove you wrong.  Don’t doubt yourself before you have even started. Just do it! 

 

  •  Children are passionate, curious creatures.  Be hungry for knowledge and learning like your children.  Ask questions and research the answers in books or the internet. Learn something new every day. Even if it’s a new word or an idea you have been pondering for years.  Knowledge is power and just imagine how powerful your brain will be in a year after absorbing 365 new words or ideas.  You then get to share that knowledge with your kids – plus you will feel a whole lot smarter.

 

  •  Be authentic and genuine.  Children generally see the best in you. They love you unconditionally.  The only masks they wear are those adorned by princesses and super-heroes.  Be yourself. Like yourself.  Respect yourself.  Easy to say and sometimes difficult to do but in the long term, you will feel better inside and people warm to what’s real.

 

  •  Children are open to, and great at, forming relationships. Take them to the park and when you leave 30 minutes later, they are frantically waving farewell to their new ‘bestie’.  Be friendly to the people you meet. Chat with the cashier at your local supermarket and mean it when you say “Have a happy day.” Make eye contact with the other parents at school and smile at your neighbours or people you pass on the street.  Yes, some will think you are a bit of a weirdo but so what….Even if they don’t smile back the first time, I guarantee they will have a better day. Smiles are infectious and they feel good for all parties involved.

 

  • Start your day early and with the gusto of a kid!  Exercise and be energetic. You are allowed to have a cup of coffee first but as you do, smile and ponder over something fun you intend to do today and then make sure you do it!         

         

  • Persist!  Kids are persistent and tenacious. They don’t give up easily.  “Mummy can I have this? “Mummy can I have this? Now can I have it?” Yes, it’s annoying sometimes, but also valuable in a world where after a while, we just start accepting “No” and stop asking for what we really want.

 

  • Children like to touch, explore, observe every detail and inspire connection.  Stop seeing things from the same old and tired perspective.  That’s how our work and personal lives get in ruts – we only see what we are accustomed to and ignore the rest. Remember how you took in every aspect of a new building or face the first time you saw it as a child?  Try and do that as much as possible. You will undoubtedly feel more alert and alive. You may even regain appreciation for something or someone you have been taking for granted.

 

  •  Finally – Celebrate your successes no matter how small.  Every step you take towards learning, creating a positive environment, or mastering a task that has been eluding you for months, indicates growth and progress.  “You learnt how to catch a ball today?  That’s freaking fabulous.”  Tomorrow, world domination!

It’s not only children who grow.  Parents do too.  As much as we watch to see what our children do with their lives, they are watching us to see what we do with ours.  I can’t tell my children to reach for the sun.  All I can do is reach for it, myself.  ~Joyce Maynard

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