February 25, 2013
4 Steps to Actually Feeling Happier
There are a lot of myths surrounding the state of mind known as “happiness.” Here’s how you can break them down and start on your own path.
Two months ago a new client entered my office for her first counseling session. “All I want is to feel happy,” she said. “I’m miserable and I focus on that misery all day long.”
It seemed like a fairly simple request, so we went to work.
Week after week I witnessed the smile on my client’s face becoming more consistent, more authentic. Soon she began talking about the laughter and pleasant activities that now fill her days. So I asked whether she thought that we had achieved her happiness goal. I was surprised when she said “no.”
What I learned is that this vibrant woman believed that in order to characterize herself as happy she could never feel sad. To her, sadness and other unpleasant feelings are not allowed in the life of someone who defines themselves as a happy person. But that is not what the human experience is actually about.
Remember, life doles out the knocks. And if we don’t allow a natural progression of the resulting unpleasant feelings we will never fully experience and embrace the joy in life. That’s right; where there is black, there is white, it’s just how nature works. There are two complementary forces that make up all aspects of life and we must allow and accept their balance.
This is the understanding that my client was missing.
And it begs the question: Happiness–what is it, really?
In simplest form, happiness is a state of being. Sure, our circumstances influence the level of happiness we can access, but happiness is within us, not around us. We all have it, but we each define it differently and have varying expectations of ourselves and our own abilities to be happy. And that is what causes the confusion.
It’s perfectly OK to have moments or days of feeling bad, rather than good. Heck, it’s necessary. When we resist the feelings that we categorize as unpleasant, it simply causes more resistance, leading to greater unhappiness. Let’s debunk the happiness myth. These steps might just help you develop a healthy–and, dare I say, happy–life balance.
1. Build a solid foundation.
Martin Seligman is one of the leading researchers in positive psychology and author of Authentic Happiness. Seligman describes happiness as having three parts: pleasure, engagement, and meaning. Pleasure is the “feel good” part of happiness. Engagement refers to living a “good life” of work, family, friends, and hobbies. Meaning refers to using our strengths to contribute to a larger purpose. Seligman says that all three are important, but that of the three, engagement and meaning make the most difference to living a happy life.
Revisit your relationships. Are they satisfactory? Do you have a good support network in place? If not, work on building it up. When you hit a bump in the road having supportive people around you will make a world of difference.
Also, review how you contribute to a larger purpose. Focusing on something bigger than you are helps to keep things in perspective.
2. Set realistic expectations.
You are human. Forcing or faking happiness leads to misery and conflict. Even if you create your happiness foundation and achieve a state of general well-being, you will have your ups and downs. It’s how you deal with those fluctuations that matters. Condemnation and negativity will jeopardize your state of balance. Get real. Eliminate the pressure and you will bounce back more quickly.
3. Allow your feelings, rather than resisting them.
There are days when you will wake up feeling unhappy. Whether you fully understand it or not, it’s important to accept that this happens. Be patient with yourself. Don’t complain, but do indulge in a little time to examine your feelings without criticism. Rather than, “I hate when I feel like this,” try “It’s interesting that I have these feelings.” Be OK with it and examine the feelings for a little while if they merit your attention. If not, simply turn your focus to your larger purpose to prevent yourself from dwelling on something that isn’t dwell-worthy.
4. Be ready for change.
Ups and downs are normal, but if you find yourself in what feels like a constant state of unhappiness it’s important to listen to what your body and mind are telling you. Life has a funny way of tapping us on the shoulder when we need to create change. If you don’t pay attention to the gentle tapping, you may be surprised by a less gentle reminder–or series of them. Either way, your subconscious mind will get your attention to suggest, or force, change. So make it easy on yourself and pay attention to the gentle tap. What is the cause of your unhappiness? Find someone who can help you sort through it, and embrace the change that lies ahead. You are on your way.
This article was written by Marla Tabaka and was first published on www.inc.com.
October 7, 2011
In the world of work, there are many people who rise above the rest and do something very special. Steve Jobs was one of these people. He inspired thousands of people to do more and has helped make work for millions of people more interesting and engaging through Apple products. We’ll be forever thankful to him.
Each of us goes to work for different reasons. Steve Jobs had his reasons. If there is one fitting tribute to the life of Steve Jobs it is to listen to his Stanford Commencement Speech in 2005. No more to say on this, just have a listen. Steve Jobs RIP.
August 12, 2011
We wanted to let you know that we have moved the Adecco Singapore Facebook profile to a great new Page that you can find at: www.facebook.com/AdeccoSingapore
Here candidates will find comment and support to help them navigate the world of work in Singapore.
There are tips and advice, links to videos and much much more. Please do go to the page and ‘like’ it, so that it shows up in your news feed.
We’ll be keeping the Adecco Singapore Group live for a while longer, but will eventually phase it out.
Thanks again for connecting on Facebook and please do check out our great new page at:
March 25, 2011
So you may not think that you’re job is the greatest (hopefully you do)…but spare a thought for the people that do the jobs listed on this website. www.interestingworldfacts.com/lifestyle/9-weirdest-jobs-on-earth.html
The jobs include: Armpit Sniffer, Furniture Tester, Snake Milker and Ball Diving. Intrigued? Read on……
January 11, 2011
New Findings From The Annual Adecco Survey Of Children Living In Singapore Survey reveals that being a Soccer Player is the most popular career choice, followed closely by becoming a Doctor or Police Officer.
The 5th annual ‘Adecco Children’s Career Survey’ of children living in Singapore has revealed that for the first time becoming a soccer player is the top career choice amongst the children surveyed – replacing becoming a lawyer which was came out tops in the same survey conducted twelve months ago. The survey also reveals that a record 96% of the children surveyed believe that it is more important to spend time with family than to make lots of money – showing that our children are indeed a caring lot.
The survey, conduced by Adecco Singapore, a subsidiary of the world’s leading staffing and human resources firm, asks children aged between 7-14 years, five simple questions:
1. What do you want to be when you grow up? Why have you chosen this and how much do you expect to earn?
2. What is the best/coolest job that you can think of?
3. If you became Prime Minister of Singapore, what are the first three things you would do?
4. What is more important: to make lots of money or to spend time with you family?
5. What are you looking forward to doing in 2011?
In the 2009 version of the survey, 88% of the children surveyed stated that they would choose to spend more time with family than in making money. In the 2010 survey, that percentage increased to 93%. However, this most recent survey reveals that 96% would rather spend time with family than in making money – proving beyond any doubt that our children have their hearts in the ‘right place’.
10% of the children surveyed stated that they want to become a soccer player when they grow up. This choice may be due to the interest generated from the FIFA World Cup held in South Africa last year and the success of the Singapore Cubs during the Youth Olympic Games, as well as the growing interest amongst Singapore youths in international soccer leagues such as the English Premier League. The children wanting to become soccer players had monthly salary expectations ranging from S$1500 right up to S$3 million!
With each previous edition of this survey, becoming a doctor has always been a top career choice – and was again popular with 7% of those surveyed wanting to pursue a career in medicine. The survey shows that other children aspire to be Vets, Pet Shop Owners and Scientists – with one young boy simply wanting to be the ‘Boss’ when he grows-up and to earn S$100,000 to go with that title.
The Top Five “What Do You Want To Be When You Grow Up” Jobs, as identified in the survey, are:
1. Soccer Player
3. Police Officer
Although often humorous in some of its findings, the most recent edition of this annual survey shows a more serious side than in previous years, with more children wanting to support fellow citizens most in need. 2010 was a year in which many parts of Asia were inflicted by natural disasters and this likely influenced the children surveyed and their thoughts about the support that they could offer and the difference that they could make to others.
The survey also asks the children what they think is the “best/coolest job” that they can imagine – with becoming a Soccer Player also coming out on top of this category for the first time. Other ‘cool’ jobs are being a ‘Repairman (quote: ‘that can make everything work’), ‘A Theme Park Employee’, ‘Being A Mother’, ‘A Dinosaur Hunter’ and ‘A Creator of Chocolate’. By far one of the most well thought through ‘coolest jobs’ is the one described by a young girl as ‘A job where there are no limits to what you are capable of and where you have fun, enjoy your working environment and are able to be yourself’.
Becoming The Prime Minister of Singapore may be a daunting task for many adults – but clearly not for many of the children responding to this survey. When asked what the first “three things they would do” if they were fortunate enough to become the Prime Minister of Singapore – the answers were both poignant…as well as amusing. Some of the responses being:
- Walk into my office!
- Ensure that everyone in Singapore has an education
- Make the island bigger
- Change the law to allow 12 year-olds to drive
- Make charitable donations compulsory
- Import more Korean K-pop music for Singaporeans to enjoy
- Ensure that we are a nation of kind people
- Air condition the entire nation
- Push for more electric cars and buses
- Ensure that young people fully understand important global issues
- Sit on my new chair and relax!
Responses to this year’s survey also included several comments around sustainable energy with observations about energy efficient transport and cheaper fuel.
An important part of the survey is the question “What is more important – to make lots of money or to spend time with your family?” An astounding 96% responded by saying that they would rather spend time with their families than in making money. Some of the reasons including:
- In times of trouble your family is there for you
- I’m alive with my family
- Because my mother takes care of me and I want to take care of her too
- Money can buy you a cool car…but without family there is no one to sit with you in the cool car
For the second year running the survey also asked the question “What are you looking forward to doing in 2011?” This ‘big’ question for the ‘young’ respondents generated some interesting answers:
- Making a difference to other people’s lives
- Getting a Girlfriend!
- Receiving enough Ang Pow to buy an iPhone
- Going to Universal Studios again and again
Many responses to this question focused on school and education – with 36% of the children surveyed stating that that they were most looking forward to excelling at school and passing exams. A large number are also looking forward to their next birthday.
This is the fifth year that Adecco has conducted this survey which gives an insight into what Singapore’s workforce of tomorrow thinks about the world that they live in and what they aspire to do and become in the future.
Lynne Ng, Regional Director for Adecco South East Asia, commented “The results of this survey are always eagerly anticipated by our clients and our team and it’s fascinating to see what is going on in the minds of our future business leaders. In previous years, the survey has shown the children surveyed to be family oriented and very ambitious. The findings this year also show the children to be more caring about the environment that they live in and wanting to help others that may be less fortunate than themselves”.
October 28, 2010
How do you sell yourself during a job interview? What should you say…and more importantly not say? What do interviewers want to hear? This short film from Adecco will help you answer some of these questions and point you in the right direction. Good luck!
June 12, 2010
As the World Cup kicks-off in South Africa, Singaporeans are in for a TV Extravaganza!! But you’ll still need to balance work and play and plan for those late night games. Adecco’s Foong Wei Liang comments about this subject:
English News Clip at: (Watch ‘Video’): www.channelnewsasia.com/stories/singaporelocalnews/view/1062602/1/.html
Or watch the Chinese News Clip at:
May 12, 2010
US – The President and First Lady of United States find themselves spending more time with each other as they both “work at home” now.
When President Barack Obama was a legislator, and Michelle Obama was working in the corporate world, they were unable to bring their children to work on “Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day” unlike now, reported ABC News.
House economic adviser Austan Goolsbee, whose daughter attended the event, commented on the family-friendly perks of being a president, “You’ve got to do a lot of work, but they have a lot of events like this.”
The White House also has a wellness-oriented environment, with a swimming pool, tennis and basketball courts, organic vegetable patch and accompanying health-conscious chefs.
[This article first appeared in Human Resources Online - http://humanresourcesonline.net/news/19657]
March 27, 2010
An Adecco Malaysia on-line survey has shown that salary and job satisfaction remain of key importance to job seekers in Malaysia – surprisingly at the expense of benefits provided by companies.
The survey, which was conducted on the homepage of www.adecco.com.my, asked job seekers what is most important to them when looking for a new position, giving three answers to choose from: Benefits, Job Satisfaction or Salary.
46% of those responding to the survey stated that salary is most important to them, while 44% stated that a job that would provide a high level of satisfaction is key to them. Only 10% stated that they considered the benefits offered by a company to be the most important factor.
Anna Koh, Assistant Branch Manager, Adecco Malaysia commented “The Malaysian job seeker of today is focused, well researched and most definitely investing in their future. It’s not surprising that the majority of job seekers want to command a good salary – but it’s refreshing to see that they are also prioritizing job satisfaction and being happy at work. These findings all point toward a more educated and balanced workforce of the future”.
What do you think?
February 1, 2010
Every year, Singapore artist Tung Yue Nang produces designs for the Adecco Ang Pow packets. These beautifully designed Ang Pow have become collectors items over the past eight years
Tung’s Baba & Nonya inspired designs capture the vibrancy of the Peranakan culture and express auspicious concepts such as abundance, career success and longevity.
The short film is the story of the Adecco Ang Pow