Are you fishing to find happiness?
Let’s bait the hook.
Stop for a moment and take a breath.
If you ignore everything else that follows, remember to exhale, please. I still forget that part, which leads to constipated stress, which makes no one happy.
So let’s talk happiness.
We look for happiness in various places. Most of us can readily conjure up images of a tropical island with its swaying palm trees in a gentle breeze, cool drink in hand. Or maybe it’s the solitude of flight, or skiing fresh powder or floating atop cool water with the sun warming your skin that feeds your soul. (That’s my place).
How many times a year do you seek out your place and replenish the reserves? Uh-huh. I thought so. But it needs to be our goal to make the time to get there, either physically or mentally, in order to live sanely among the rest of us. Smiley face.
According to a new study by Oxford Economics, U.S. workers are using only 77 percent of their paid time off, a 40 year high. Basic math tells us that 23% of our potential happiness is stuck in a cubicle (substitute your workplace here).
In his article, Why Happiness Is So Important, author Jeff Durnham writes that “for happiness to be attained, it’s important to be open and willing to the concept that it can be attained.”
And it doesn’t need to be some super gigantic concept that requires a boatload of money or weeks of planning. You can create a happiness party in your mind. We send children to “time out” (okay, usually when they misbehave), but why can’t you take a time out?
Learning basic yoga poses can put you in a good mood. Many students of yoga swear by the meditative practice to relax and cope with their stressful lives. Guided meditations can mentally transport you, well, anywhere you choose. People of all religions find happiness and peace and a sense of calm in mindful prayer.
Whether you find happiness in a physical place or in a mental time out, center your focus on the right now.
Turns out you can train your brain to be happy which helps both mental and physical longevity. And science has proven happiness:
• stimulates the growth of nerve connections.
• improves cognition by increasing mental productivity.
• improves your ability to analyze and think.
• affects your view of surroundings.
• increases attentiveness.
• leads to more happy thoughts.
And happy people are way more fun to be around than unhappy people.
In October (2014) I had the pleasure of meeting Happiness Expert Britt Reints at Tory Johnson’s Spark & Hustle event in Atlanta, GA. She admits “I used to be unhappy, and now I’m happy. Getting here was rough – but also wonderful and worth it.” Britt has made a business of helping people find practical ways to be happier.
My brother and his wife love to fish. In fact they spend April through December fishing from their boat on the Atlantic coast of New England. Rarely does a squall or downpour or choppy waters keep them from their happy place.
Each winter they travel to Costa Rica, to fish. No tutti frutti drinks under a straw cabana or tanning on Nacascolo Beach. They go to fish. Period. It recharges and refuels their souls and makes them happy. And they are darn fun to be around.
After a few years of spending time in Costa Rica they wanted to learn some conversational Spanish before their next trip. As a start I made them a rustic wood sign with the message, PESCA IDA, which translates to GONE FISHING in Spanish. (That’s the actual sign hanging in their home).
It is an appropriate thought for us all to take a time out, hang up the GONE FISHING sign and go to your happy place. Whether it’s a mental or physical time out, do it today. You’ll be so much more fun to hang around with tomorrow.
SURVEY: Where is the place that brings you happiness? It doesn’t matter if it’s a physical place or a pleasant thought in your mind. Please share your happiness place in the comments section below. Thanks!
Like the PESCA IDA sign? Click here to see our CUSTOM WOOD SIGNS.