Enjoying life is just as important as success.
Why do I say that?
Because through truly living we redefine ourselves and our goals and find out what really matters. I cover this subject so often with business owners who have lost their way, or individuals in employment who are fed up of the daily grind who want to start something new for themselves. Indeed in my VISION series of workshops we look at the business owner before we even consider the business; checking if life really is delivering.
You may ask why as a very practical business advisor; I cover a holistic subject such as understanding your WHY?
It is because we are WHOLE people and in my years of experience, I recognise the need to acknowledge that we are not just our businesses, or even our ideas and skills but we are additionally our motivation and passion for life.
Prior to being a business advisor, I was a career coach supporting people at crossroads to unpick their career direction. It became apparent delivering this discipline that motivation and passion were the magic ingredients to increased success. Therefore, in qualifying as a business advisor I combined this knowledge to such effect that the businesses I supported became successful too. If self-belief, self-esteem, motivation and passion are the key to ascending a career ladder, this can also be true for entrepreneurs. It is from this core where creativity and those light bulb moments are ignited, but they can only surface once the more basic needs for food, security, love and self-esteem are satisfied.
During times of increased stress and uncertainty we become serious about life and business which can overshadow our thought patterns, affect our ability and cloud our vision, to the point where we are in danger of forgetting ourselves, our zest for life, our deep need to laugh, have fun and enjoy our families and work.
Maslow’s studies on happiness and health were essentially addressing our need to feel happy, secure, valued and confident. Indeed, Abraham Maslow was one of the earliest psychologists to focus attention on happy individuals and monitor their success, identifying the respected “hierarchy of needs” as a tool to support this theory. Through readjusting our lives, we have the capacity for great happiness. A chemical reaction happens when we allow ourselves to be happy; we become our best and brightest selves and therefore more effective, with the resulting outcome of driving our businesses forward through positive leadership.
When we laugh, endorphins are released from the pituitary gland into the blood and then into the brain and into the spine. When laughing, the dopamine chemical is released in the brain and then is sent as a signal to other nerves in the body. This results in happier and brighter people with infinitely more creative ability, increased energy levels and success.
So, if laughter is our greatest healer and connection is our biggest motivator, why not do more of it?
I am not undermining your situation if you are undergoing health treatment, dealing with bereavement or indeed feeling overwhelmed and stressed. Indeed, I have felt blocked, despondent and lethargic, juggling a chaotic life with running a business. Some of my clients have reported emotions such as exasperation, anger, desperation and also fear. But maybe NOW is the moment to take some ‘time out’ to get away from the blockages, have a break and focus on enjoying life. Go to the beach, have a walk, ring friends, lessen responsibilities and watch the serotonin levels replenish and your positive perspective return. If you are feeling uncertain and unhappy then this is definitely not the time to make key decisions but instead, perhaps take the time to create a positive oasis and even learn to laugh again.
Laughter, smiling and fun are all positive sensations, the body’s natural healthy way to overcome stress; in fact, laughter can alter dopamine and serotonin activity. Furthermore, endorphins secreted by laughter can help us feel good again and help when we are uncomfortable or feeling depressed.
If this article is resonating with you then my challenge to you is to undertake this activity.
Identify three things that you can do this week to:
2) Do something good for you (only YOU) and importantly
3) Have fun
Go on, take the pressure off and ‘Let go’.
I have never taken myself too seriously and as a result in most of my senior management roles both the staff and customers loved my energy, bought into my zest for life and in every role the businesses I managed were successful. Why? Because we all need a little fun in life. That is why I refuse to become boring and predictable now, injecting creativity and fun into my business courses, for we always learn so much better when we are happy.
Correct me if I’m wrong but aren’t we meant to have fun and enjoy our life?
Life might indeed be serious and stressful at the moment but now more than ever you deserve to let your hair down, to find the happiness and laughter around you and not worry about what people think. Numerous studies have shown that the healthiest, happiest people tend to be more involved in their communities, therefore there is some sense to be found in growing wider social connections and relationships as they will inspire you and are an important part of creating your ‘happy’. Being part of a community often sustains people through the most difficult of times, so perhaps find NEW ways of connecting through: Networking, Skype and even social interaction in order to find the fun again. Even during this terrible pandemic, you might be surprised by the spark and latent creative flame, if you let go and choose to have some fun. Look at doing little things that make you smile and can create memories for yourself, your loved ones, your employees and all the people around you that you care about.
Enjoying life is the means to success. Redefine your goals, smile and find out what really matters.