Who recognises those song lyrics? Just been singing them as I write this as I’ve not been giving you all of me…so here goes!!
Okay so I get it, we all want to be happy right? Who doesn’t? Most people I ask say they just want to be happy.
In my TEDx talk I use the analogy of a tree to bring it to life why Happiness and Mindfulness are important and how they can help us be better versions of ourselves and integrated together. However, I feel like I’ve been holding back from sharing some of the stuff around happiness and in this I’ve not been my authentic self so I’m opening up to you for two reasons:
1) To help you realise that if you’re not being authentically you, to help you think about how you can. If I open up hopefully it will help you realise you can.
2) Also I hope that by me being my authentic self, I’m sharing all of me and its all of me that can help you as my background is in Psychology, Positive Psychology and Mindfulness. I’ve come to the realisation that I can help more of you if I share all of me, as all of these approaches integrate! Sounds a bit like that John Legend song… anyway….
The UK is behind when it comes to Positive Psychology with the research coming to the forefront from 1998 onwards and it’s not yet integrated into a lot of our practices some of which in the personal development and health practices is decades old!
This is one of the reasons why I held myself back. When I started to talk about it when I did my Positive Psychology qualification in 2014 I was met with a great amount of misunderstanding and there is still a misconception about what Positive Psychology is and how it integrates with Mindfulness. I found I faced into a lot of criticism and negativity and honestly? I backed into a corner, I had anxiety and self esteem issues and I thought I would wait for the UK to catch up.
Not any longer my friends….I’m ready to face into this as my desire to help people and businesses is greater and with my self esteem now higher due to spending time working on myself. I am now ready to stand up for what I believe in a gentle authentic softer approach where people see real value in how their lives can change.
For example I recently worked on a project where we needed to get Leaders really engaging their teams and performing highly. I knew using Positive Psychology techniques would dramatically shift the performance of the business. It has, but I got there softly starting with a group of champions who saw the real value in understanding and applying. They were willing to come forward and share not only how using these methods helped them to be better at work but how it changed their lives. This enabled the movement to go viral and led to over 800 people in the organisation using these practices on a daily basis.
I still hear people talking about it like a positive movement however where negative emotions are not allowed and that its all about positive thinking and this really isn’t the case. Positive Psychology is about leveraging moments of genuine positive emotion and genuine joy and this has been shown by research to fuel our brains and enabling us to do so much more. This is why its about so much more than well-being, its about great, productive people able to do so much more with their lives. I would not have been able to set up my business and do a TEDx talk in front of thousands of people if it was not for me applying these approaches.
In terms of negative emotions not being valid, this is frankly a load of rubbish. This is where Mindfulness and building a Mindfulness habit is hugely important as we recognise both positive and negative emotions are valid. Mindfulness can help us to deal with the negative emotions in a logical and more emotionally intelligent way.
Because of this integration, Positive Psychology and Mindfulness work together and compliment each other as practices and it was through studying Positive Psychology that I discovered Mindfulness.
Both practices have transformed my life on so many levels. I think the best feedback I ever had was from my husband who very openly said ‘You as such a nice person to be around now, especially in the mornings’ and he shared how me feeling upset and negative and worrying most mornings about work actually really affected his day and he didn’t know how to support me. He saw me totally shift as a person and its really helped him to get on with his day and perform at his job too!
So here are some tips for you and how you can use some of these methods on a really practical level and additional support available.
1) Find out your strengths and use them, this is the best way to get some ongoing positive emotion in your life and work smarter! (Get in touch if you would like a strengths profile and debriefing session)
2) Think about what you can do to create positive emotion on a daily basis and good starter is to carry out the activities in my TEDx talk as this will increase your happiness pathways in the brain enabling you to continue to fuel your brain and be a better version of you. (to build on this you can join my 21 days of happiness program where you will receive data about your own well-being and coaching to help you with the transformation from an International Coaching Federation accredited coach)
3) Practice Mindfulness regularly – even a few minutes a day can make a huge difference. Spot what’s in all your senses, see, smell, touch, hear, taste. Think about what you can do to be in the present moment non-judgmentally. By bringing your awareness back you are able to reduce the fight or flight response that’s usually overriding the brain and step back from stressful situations and deal with them in a logical rather than emotionally reactive way (I have Mindfulness recordings, course and private tuition available)
If you have any questions about the above or would like to join my movement to help people see their potential through the benefits of Happiness and Mindfulness please let me know. Lets do this!!