Sunday, 18 October 2015
Friday, 18 April 2014
Thursday, 8 August 2013
Last weekend RedBallooners were invited to our end of financial year celebration and kick off meeting in Port Douglas. When asked by friends “What was it like?” The only answer I had was – ‘joyous’.
The excitement was palpable as soon as we met early on Friday morning. The laughter infectious, the camaraderie obvious – the sense of connection was clear.
This sense of team does not happen by accident – we work hard together, we push the boundaries – set the bar high – and then we celebrate! And on the cycle goes.
It is pretty special to be able to get away. There was plenty of work involved – but that shared sense of experience – and laughter ensues. It is as they say ‘priceless’.
So I read with interest this week : Happy Money: The Science of Smarter Spending. We have heard since we were small that‘Money can’t buy happiness’. However these social scientists suggest that used in the right way money can improve our sense of well being.
Here are the five main points they make:
- Time is the only commodity that every person on the planet was given equally… (we have differing life span’s of course – but we each have 24 hours a day at our disposal and how we choose to spend it can greatly determine our experience of happiness). If you were to use money to ‘Buy Time’ ie how is the purchase going to ensure you are using your time to do the things you want to do. “Time Affluence”. Thinking about time- rather than money – which means being mindful about ‘spending’ time on activities that promote well-being , like being with friends / family and volunteering.
- Make it a treat: having too much of a good thing (ie when did party food start becoming everyday food)– Abundance is the enemy of appreciation. Have delightful things occasionally to really appreciate them. The relationship between income and happiness is weaker than many people expect, perhaps because affluent people do the things that delight them all the time, ie not too much of a good thing.
- Bigger is not always better. Money can by bigger cars houses and toys… but there is not evidence to suggest that these make people happier. What is the point in having a large home if you have no one to share it with you? “Remarkably there is almost no evidence that buying a home – or a newer nicer home – increases happiness. People who spend their money on enhancing their leisure activities report significantly greater satisfaction with their lives.”
- Do more have less. “The research shows experiences provide more happiness than material goods in part because experiences are more likely to make us feel connected to others,” … “Understanding why experiences provide more happiness than material goods can also help us to choose the most satisfyingkinds of experiences.”… “Collecting memorable experiences, even at the expense of momentary enjoyment, seems to hold particular appeal for those who care about using their time productively”…. “The length of an experience has little to do with the pleasure people derive from it.” [As the founder of RedBalloon of course I was going to bring this to your attention – and clearly last weekend that is what it was all about for our team... no one will every forget the day we all bundled onto a plane from Sydney to Cairns...]
- Invest in others. Volunteer, help, listen, assist, give, donate – there are so many ways to invest in others. What about simply friendship! If people have a friend at work they are far more likely to enjoy their job. I delighted in really getting to know my colleagues warts and all on the weekend… there is nothing like snorkeling the great barrier reef together to get a sense of friendship. (You know that moment when you take off your mask and your face is swollen and as friends you all have a great laugh – as you compare notes on what you have seen under the sea.)
It might be a little effort for the team to put the weekend together but seriously the value of our shared experience is endless and forever.
Wednesday, 3 July 2013
Sunday, 30 June 2013
9 Daily Habits That Will Make You Happier
These minor changes in your daily routine will make a major difference in your life and career.
Happiness is the only true measure of personal success. Making other people happy is the highest expression of success, but it's almost impossible to make others happy if you're not happy yourself.
With that in mind, here are nine small changes that you can make to your daily routine that, if you're like most people, will immediately increase the amount of happiness in your life:
1. Start each day with expectation.
If there's any big truth about life, it's that it usually lives up to (or down to) your expectations. Therefore, when you rise from bed, make your first thought: "something wonderful is going to happen today." Guess what? You're probably right.
2. Take time to plan and prioritize.
The most common source of stress is the perception that you've got too much work to do. Rather than obsess about it, pick one thing that, if you get it done today, will move you closer to your highest goal and purpose in life. Then do that first.
3. Give a gift to everyone you meet.
I'm not talking about a formal, wrapped-up present. Your gift can be your smile, a word of thanks or encouragement, a gesture of politeness, even a friendly nod. And never pass beggars without leaving them something. Peace of mind is worth the spare change.
4. Deflect partisan conversations.
Arguments about politics and religion never have a "right" answer but they definitely get people all riled up over things they can't control. When such topics surface, bow out by saying something like: "Thinking about that stuff makes my head hurt."
5. Assume people have good intentions.
Since you can't read minds, you don't really know the "why" behind the "what" that people do. Imputing evil motives to other people's weird behaviors adds extra misery to life, while assuming good intentions leaves you open to reconciliation.
6. Eat high quality food slowly.
Sometimes we can't avoid scarfing something quick to keep us up and running. Even so, at least once a day try to eat something really delicious, like a small chunk of fine cheese or an imported chocolate. Focus on it; taste it; savor it.
7. Let go of your results.
The big enemy of happiness is worry, which comes from focusing on events that are outside your control. Once you've taken action, there's usually nothing more you can do. Focus on the job at hand rather than some weird fantasy of what might happen.
8. Turn off "background" TV.
Many households leave their TVs on as "background noise" while they're doing other things. The entire point of broadcast TV is to make you dissatisfied with your life so that you'll buy more stuff. Why subliminally program yourself to be a mindless consumer?
9. End each day with gratitude.
Just before you go to bed, write down at least one wonderful thing that happened. It might be something as small as a making a child laugh or something as huge as a million dollar deal. Whatever it is, be grateful for that day because it will never come again.