Post from Srinivasan R on linkedin.com, september 2016: Remember that happiness is one of the key elements for your success! 9 reasons why.
Success is incredibly important to all of us. While many factors determine success, one factor- happiness, holds the key to sustained endeavors and exponential productivity. It’s no wonder that LinkedIn is replete with examples and posts on how to succeed in your endeavors.
The Websters dictionary defines ‘happiness’ as ‘feeling pleasure and enjoyment because of your life, situation, etc.; showing or causing feelings of pleasure and enjoyment.’
Being happy has a very personal connotation. For some people it is connected to material pursuits- success at work, a promotion, a windfall gain, a new car, new house and so on. For others, it is more experiential- travelling to places that they always wanted to visit, spending time with their loved ones and things that they experience. Whatever it is that makes you happy, do remember that happiness is one of the key elements for your success!
So why is happiness so important for your success? Here are some reasons that make happiness fundamental to your success.
1. Happiness Impacts Business Significantly
Your brain works significantly better in a positive state than in a negative, neutral or stressed state. Every single business and educational outcome improves when we start at positive rather than waiting for future success. Research has established that by being happy, sales improve 37% cross-industry, productivity by 31%, you are 40% more likely to receive a promotion, nearly 10 times more engaged at work, live longer, get better grades, your symptoms are less acute, and much more.
2. You Relate To Happy People Better
Leadership is a lot about influencing and motivating people. Look at the most charismatic leader in your company and you will find someone who connects very well to people. In all possibilities he or she would be a highly motivated person, a good listener and most likely with an engaging smile. If you want to influence people you cannot afford to put them off.
Just think, how happy would you be to meet a morose salesperson and would you really buy anything from this person?Business is a lot about managing and motivating people. Being happy allows leaders to do this the best.
3. You Are At Your Creative Best When You Are Happy
Creativity can generate breakthrough solutions to problems that you thought had no solution. But, creativity also calls for the right mental state.Have you seen creative people at work? You won’t find them stressed and running helter-skelter. It is a proven fact that you are at your best when you are relaxed and positive. If you add happiness to it then you have a surefire recipe for success. When you are positive your brain becomes more engaged, energetic, resilient and creative. You tend to perform better at anything you do. If you observe successful leaders closely, you will find that they come up with very creative solutions to business problems.
4. Happiness Lowers Your Heart Rate And Blood Pressure
Today’s business world has moved from brain storming to brain stilling.Studies have shown that happiness lowers the heart rate and keeps the blood pressure under control. When you are happy the body releases endorphins that are natural mood elevators and make you feel good. At the same time, the level of cortisol (the stress hormone) in your body comes down sharply. Incidentally, cortisol is responsible for a number of health problems ranging from weight gain to high blood pressure. Happiness, puts you in a relaxed state where you can deliver maximum efficiency and expend the least effort.
5. Happiness Strengthens Your Immune System
Davis Suzuki wrote in ‘The Sacred Balance’, ‘condensed molecules from breath exhaled from verbal expressions of anger, hatred, and jealousy, contain toxins. Accumulated over one hour, these toxins are enough to kill 80 guinea pigs!’ Can you imagine the harm you are doing to your body when you stay within negative emotions? How can you expect to perform at your best in this state? When you are happy the body’s response to produce antibodies is very rapid. This allows you to rapidly combat any infection and keeps you healthy. On the other hand when you are depressed, you are much more likely to fall sick more often.
Hence, happiness can impact your productivity, significantly.
6. Happiness Allows You To Recover From Stress Very Quickly
Stress is called a silent killer and is one of the biggest reasons for poor health and lower productivity particularly among corporate employees. Workplace stress costs U.S. employers an estimated $200 billion per year in absenteeism, lower productivity, staff turnover, workers’ compensation, medical insurance and other stress-related expenses. It has been proven that when you are happy, your capacity to recover from periods of stress is higher. Accordingly you are far more productive.
7. When You Are Happy You Are More Open To Taking Constructive Risks
In work and business, if you are wedded to status quo, you are going nowhere fast. To succeed, you need to take constructive risks and move out of your comfort zone. Consider how risk impacts what you get. You normally get a higher compensation when you change jobs than with a raise in the same job. Do remember the risk you take in changing jobs has a bearing on the increased compensation as well. Similarly, if you start a company or your own business, the payoff is likely to be much higher than if you were in a steady job. Again, the risk profile of business is very different from that of employment.When you are in a happy state of mind you tend to think positively and don’t shy away from taking constructive risks. Consequently what you can achieve, is a lot more.
8. Your State Of Mind Can Determine How You Interpret Situations And Respond To Events
Fear can be a very powerful emotion. When you are afraid of losing your job or missing out on something very important to you, your response to even trivial events could be exaggerated. This means you could overreact to something that probably does not even merit a response.When you are happy on the other hand, you tend to take a pragmatic view of provocations.Think of a situation where you have just got that promotion that you wanted for a long time and are driving home on a Friday evening. You are looking forward to a relaxed weekend when a reckless driver cuts into your path, forcing you to swerve. Given the mindset you are in, the chances of you flying into a rage or getting very perturbed, are low.
Now, think of another situation where you coming out of a meeting where anything that could go wrong, has gone wrong and this very incident happens. Your reaction could be very different and aggressive. Exaggerated response to any situation lowers your credibility and undermines your position which no leader can afford. Keeping yourself in a happy state can do a lot to increase your productivity and credibility.
9. What Happens When You Don’t Get The Results You Anticipated?
Sometimes at work, you don’t get results you anticipated for a prolonged period of time. It could be that client who does not want to sign your contract, or you are somehow missing your targets or whatever. When something like this happens, your state of mind plays a big role on how you respond to it. For instance if you are happy with your life overall you would try to analyze what could have caused these issues. You would also consult people who could help you, because you believe you are doing your best. The net outcome would be a resolution of your problem.
However, if you are unhappy with yourself and your life for any reason and you miss your targets at work, chances are that you will blame yourself and question your own competence, which could further erode your self worth and therefore your performance. The problem remains unresolved while your capacity to deal with it comes down.
Success at business is often about persisting way past the point that others have given up and this calls for conviction. Being in the right state of mind can help you do this effectively and be a better leader. So if you are unhappy for any reason, try and find out what the underlying issue is and address it at your earliest. If you have been unhappy for some time now, then do this on priority. Don’t let your mental state compromise your achievements.
Remember, to achieve huge success you need to be in the right state of mind, happy.
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