Recently I was at a business women’s networking event where one of the speakers, an executive coach, was asked “What is the definition of success”? She took a deep breath, looked at the audience, and replied very simply “Success is happy”. YES, I thought, finally I am hearing this in the business community. Success is happy.
In other words, an individual’s whole life must be considered when pursuing happiness and /or success. Clients of mine, time and again, state in the first session: “all I want is to be happy” to which I reply “what would happy look like for you?” You see my ‘happy’ is different to your ‘happy’. And, here is the ‘aha’ moment when clients begin to ponder their own happiness. I invite them to be curious about the moments in their lives when they were truly happy, even if they have to go back to childhood to rediscover them i.e, what was going on, who were they with, why were they content.
More than a feeling, happiness is a state of being. It is overall contentment. When content in life, you are strong and resilient. You have a deep sense of knowing where you are and where you are going. You can self-regulate your emotions. When life does not go your way and feelings of depression, anger and stress seep in, then these feelings are acknowledged and owned. Some people know what to do next to move forward others need to seek help. When content, feelings and overall outlook are positive, energized and yes, happy.
Success today is looking to make sure that your entire life is working i.e. your health, your work, your relationships, your finances, your sense of community, your personal outlet(s). In a busy life within a busy world, you need an outlet to rejuvenate, to re-calibrate. It is absolutely necessary to carve out pockets of time for yourself. Plan the time to sing, dance, create, run, paint, do yoga, play an instrument. It is paramount to have an outlet for rejuvenation (perhaps having to think back to happy childhood times to rediscover your interests). This outlet relieves the pressure of your busy world, feeds your positive state of being and helps you uncover new ways to guide and balance your life. Think about it, what does happy look like for you?