Law of Success: The Untold Secrets

Law of Success:  The Untold Secrets

Archive for the Category 'Strenghts'

Happiness Before Success

Saturday, March 16th, 2019

Many of us chase Success in order to become happy and fulfilled. The formula that was taught by schools, parents, the company we work for, or society says ‘If you work hard, you will be successful and then you will be happy.’ Almost two decades of research indicates this isn’t true.

Putting on a happy face is not what we are talking about here. Happiness is “learning how to cultivate the mindset and behaviors that have been proven to fuel greater success and fulfillment. It is a work ethic.” (Shawn Achor in The Happiness Advantage) Imagine! Happiness being a work ethic!

Not only does being happy improve relationships, performance, your health, and enables you to live longer, but it causes success and achievement. You’ve heard of the flight or fight response. Positive Psychology research has found that happiness has an evolutionary contribution that is called “Broaden and Build” (instead of shrink, freeze or flee). When our mindset or mood is positive we are more motivated, more creative, smarter, and more successful.

Negative emotions narrow our options and actions. Positive emotions opens us up to possibilities, allows us to think more creatively, become more motivated, and open to new ideas. “They help us build more intellectual, social, and physical resources we can rely on in the future (Achor).” Not only can we think better, we can also see more!!!!! We can physically see more, process more visual stimulation, and actually expand our peripheral vision when we have a positive mindset, or a burst of positive emotion. This is powerful data! I’ve been saying on this blog that scarcity consciousness contracts and optimism and thriving helps us expand. Now data shows that it actually does exactly that.

A couple of examples. Students who were told to think of the happiest days of their lives just before an exam out performed those people who didn’t think positive thoughts. A study using experienced doctors looking at descriptions of symptoms were able to get to an accurate diagnosis twice as fast as the control group. The thing that made them happy? They were given a piece of candy for no reason (but did not eat it) just before starting their analysis.

Guess what else it does? Positive emotions help undo stress and anxiety! This allows us to improve our focus, and function at a higher ability. If you are needing to perform for example on a presentation thinking of successful times that you have already presented, or imagining your presentation going well, or watching a video that uplifts you or gives you a smile, will allow you to make a better presentation.

When we give ourselves quick positive boosts, we can function better in the moment. When we do this over time, we raise our baseline of happiness. What we want to do is develop a list of activities, thoughts that can give us a quick boost, or remember times that makes us smile. A short humorous video clip, listening to a favorite song, petting your dog, having a quick conversation with a friend, cleaning your bathroom or kitchen, are things you might do to lift your spirits and give yourself an enormous boost in performance.

Shawn Achor gives a list of suggested things to do which give us a quick boost of positive emotions which can help us change and lift our mindset. Over time, if we do this, we raise our happiness set point.

  1. Meditate
  2. Find Something to Look forward to. (Put something on your calendar that you can have the pleasure of anticipating.
  3. Commit Conscious Acts of Kindness (giving to friends and or strangers decreases stress and raises your mood)
  4. Put things in your surroundings that bring you pleasure – like pictures of family near your computer at work.
  5. Spending time outside improves your mood, improves working memory, and broadens your thinking.
  6. Perhaps watching less TV, especially violent media. Psychologists have found that people who watch less TV are more accurate judges of risks and rewards, because they are less likely to see sensationalized or one-sided sources of information.
  7. Exercise. One study show that 3 groups of depressed people were studied. One was given antidepressants, and the second group was asked to exercise 45 minutes 3 times a week, and the third was a combination of both. All 3 groups showed similar improvements after 4 months. After 6 months, of the medication alone group, 38% had relapsed back into depression. The exercise only group only had a relapse factor of 9%. Exercise any way you want, because it gives you a long lasting effect.
  8. Go to activities like concerts, group dinners out or spend money on someone else.
  9. Exercise a Signature Strength. We are all good at a number of things. Whenever we do the things that we are good at, we experience a boost of positivity. You can take a survey at www.viasurvey.org to find out what your top five strengths are. The 24 character strengths that are assessed are the ones most contributing to human flourishing.
  10. While Achor did not list this, two posts ago, I listed writing into your book of positive aspects as something to do at the beginning of each day. Today, I am amending that to make a list of recent things that have made your smile or feel really good. And keep adding to it, because when you are not happy, you will not remember these things.

My friend Nisha told me today that our brains are wired to loop again and again with a playlist of how to stay safe (from our survival training of watch out for bears, lions, and tigers, or falling off cliffs). Smiles, and positive thoughts don’t make that playlist. That is why we have to consciously choose to reach for better feeling thoughts and experiences. I am hunching that this is what Dr. Achor meant when he suggest happiness is a work ethic.

So I was feeling down when I started reading The Happiness Advantage, and was so refreshed to read about the research that shows how remarkably reaching for a better feeling thought, a better feeling experience helps us to be successful in our lives, in our relationships, in our work, in our performance, in our earning ability. Being conscious about where we are emotionally pays great dividends.

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Victim, Perpetrator, Rescuer, or Empowered?

Monday, September 30th, 2013

Victim, Perpetrator, Rescuer or Empowered? That is the question.

What is going on? Everyone I know is having some kind of emotional challenge. 

 

I think that we are in the middle of a large vibrational shift in our culture. To be the best we can be, situations are happening where we can look at our lesser behaviors, and make different choices about how to cope.

 

For us to be the full, expressive, powerful successful vibrant self, we need to stand in our knowingness, our strength and our authenticity. Many of us have built in blocks to standing in our positive strength. 

 

One cycle of behavior that most all of us were taught in some way revolves around  feeling our personal power. Somehow we were taught different stances of personal strength. This damaged personal power structure is the victim-rescuer-perpetrator triangle.

 

Anyone who wonders about their value or asks if they are “good enough,” feels small and powerless. That is a symptom of feeling a victim of circumstance, a person, or a group or government. We don’t feel a sense of power.

 

You have seen folks who feel emphatic that they need to protect themselves by using words, emphasis or their bodies to make their point. Often harm happens as a result. Some type of perpetration happens when we blame others, criticize, or push and shove our way to the front of the line. We seem to live in a society these days that needs to find blame somewhere somehow.  The people who stand in the perpetrator part of the triangle feel like they are regaining some of their personal power back by hurting others.

 

The third leg of the triangle is the rescuer behavior pattern, where people try to feel better by helping someone else. “You’re not doing very OK. If I help you someway, then I prove my worth and can feel good about myself.”   Rescuers feel their personal power by giving others advice, helping them, but usually in a way that says to the person being helped, “you’re not OK. You need me to help you.”

 

What’s really sneaky about this whole dynamic, is that no one feels empowered while standing anywhere on the victim perpetrator rescuer triangle. When we are not empowered, we ache and hurt inside so much that we will do anything for some relief. So we move to another place on the triangle. A person who is laid off and feeling victimized by the economy feels powerless (victim). To feel more powerful, they look for someone to blame loudly or shout at the children or kick the dog (perpetrator). They may decide to help out at the food bank because when they are volunteering, they don’t feel so much a victim (rescuer).  

 

Anyone who has practiced any of these coping behaviors on the victim, rescuer, perpetrator triangle, knows very well how to act from any part. Victims know how to be perpetrators. Rescuers know how to be perpetrators. Perpetrators probably started out as victims or rescuers.  We each move to a place on the triangle in response to what is happening in our lives. 

 

These times urgently call for us to step off this triangle where we use our power in a damaged way.

 

These times call for us to step into our strength.

 

Perhaps this call is far beyond our comfort range. Perhaps this call does not seem to honor our timing.

 

The times itself are giving us the opportunity to either entrench into the old patterns, or to find a powerful way to transcend the old outmoded ways of being. Some people may in fact feel victimized by these times. 

 

So what are you going to do?  It is a huge and very important choice.

 

I don’t know about you, but I do not want to be a victim. I am tired of that. I choose to find my personal strength, even when everything else may not seem to support it. I know that the Universe DOES SUPPORT US.  It is calling us to reach in very deep.

 

It calls to us to reach deeply for the highest and best in ourselves. 

 

What do you choose?

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Strengths and Success

Wednesday, January 28th, 2009


Strengths and Success
are related. How much do you know about your personal strengths, your individuality? How much do you cherish those strengths? Strength and Positive Psychology are oriented towards what you do right. In order to experience success, knowledge and appreciation of your strengths are vital.

We live in a negative society. Our parents often want us to “fit in” while we are growing up; schools want to deliver their core curricula, not nurturing our passions and uniqueness. When we go to work we are hired and then often need to change ourselves to fit the job, and are evaluated upon the areas that need to be improved. This fixation upon our weaknesses undermines our productivity, contributes to illnesses. To be successful, we need to focus on our strengths.

Positives are very necessary to our physical, emotional, and mental well-being. Being positive can increase your life by ten years. Being negative have make you ill and kill you. Positiveness increases your success. Negativity undermines your success. Positives build your self confidence.

How do you play to your strength? Identify your strengths is step one. Acknowledge your strengths is step two. Remind yourself of your strengths often; step three. Develop you strengths and use them more fully helps you flourish and be successful. If you are asked to speak to your five greatest weaknesses and your five greatest strengths, which could you do the fastest? I’m betting that you can easily identify your weaknesses.

Your mission today is to identify five personal strengths. Embrace them as part of your path to success. They are yours. Everyone needs at least five positive interactions for every negative interaction. That is the magic ratio. So it is up to you to begin making a list of your personal strengths. You need to add to it each day, and you need to remind yourself each evening of where you used your strengths during the day. As you value and appreciate your strengths, your success will increase. As you increase your awareness of your personal strengths, others will notice your success.

Some resources for you are the following books. They are all excellent. Click on the links to learn more.
Now, Discover Your Strengths, by Marcus Buckingham and Donald Clifton. Strength Finder 2.0

How Full Is Your Bucket? Positive Strategies for Work and Life, by Tom Rath and Donald O. Clifton

Success, Strength, Strengths

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