Happiness Series – You can find success through happiness

In my previous post I had written about what happiness means. One of the aims of this blog is to also curate writing by other authors, relevant to the themes that To Better Lives revolves around. Here’s the first one, which talks about how you can find success through happiness.

Does success follow from happiness, or does happiness come to us as a result of success? Elle Kaplan answers this question with the help of research findings from Shawn Achor, NYT bestselling author and expert on positive psychology. I would recommend that you read the entire article here. Below is my summation of what Elle writes.

Research has proved that happiness does in fact bring success, instead of the other way around. Having a positive mindset and being optimistic will lead to long-term contentment, and help you achieve the goals you have defined for yourself as “success”. People can actually work towards developing a happy mindset, by practising certain strategies:

(a) Viewing a problem as a challenge, not a threat – Considering troubles as challenges instead of threats will impact how you deal with stressful situations. Believing that you will come out stronger in the end will drastically increase your engagement and satisfaction levels.

(b) Increasing social connection – Spending time with friends and family, asking for help when you need it, seeking mentorship, all of these social interactions help to decrease stress and increase happiness.

(c) Practising gratitude – Appreciating and thanking others will have a positive impact on your own happiness as well as that of people you have thanked. Appreciating yourself is a part of this too, and will make you a stronger, happier person.

To be successful therefore, we would need to make mindset and behavioural shifts. This is not an overnight process and will take time, but eventually we can reprogram ourselves for a happier and more rewarding life.