“Happiness is a mood, not a destination. It’s like being tired or hungry, it’s not permanent, it comes and goes and that’s ok."
I heard this wonderful quote on a TV show years ago and it stuck with me because of how true it is.
I asked my colleagues to describe what keeps them happy in their space at work and what I found is that it’s mostly a physical thing such as having the radio on to keep them motivated or having a coffee or pay day that keeps them the happiest. And I like these things too! Although they are very relevant to happiness, I asked them to dig a little deeper.
What drives us to go into work each day? From my colleagues it’s the vibe, the team who you work with day in day out, outcomes of your work, love of what you do and the passion of a particular duty or industry.
When I think about what makes me happy, it’s my environment, the desk I sit at is kept clean and that creates a platform for me to work efficiently and get stuff done. It’s variety of work and achievements of the hard work I put in. It’s my boss who leads and inspires.
Happiness is created by you and it can last a minute or a whole day if you let it. Psychologist and author Martin Seligman said that “authentic happiness” is a combination of engagement, meaning, and positive emotions. He studied people from all over the world and discovered that when a person exercises certain traits or virtues—like duty, kindness, and leadership—it promotes authentic happiness.
They say that when your happy at home your happy at work and vice versa. But why should we differentiate between only being happy at one or the other? You live in a suburb and house that you like, you drive a car that you chose because you like it’s features and brand, you wear the clothes you like and the list can go on, so why not choose the job you like? Choose the location and the right company for you and if you make sure that the position itself and the leaders you have around you make the right kind of environment for you then the chances of being happy every day are high.
Remember that happiness isn’t a permanent emotional fixture so the next time you are having a hard time or in an unhappy mood just remember a quote from my favourite book by Richard Carlson: “Don't sweat the small stuff...and it's all small stuff.”
What creates your happiness at work?
By La Toya Galea