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The Happiness Advantage

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Happiness is a very individual thing. What makes one person happy doesn’t work at all for the next person. But, our beliefs about how we achieve happiness are surprisingly similar and for most of us, are based on external events. If we get “x”… then we will be happy. It’s the way many of us have been conditioned since childhood.

We think: If I can just get that promotion; make that sale; buy that (fill in the blank); lose that weight; etc. then I will be happy. In other words, the belief is success first then happiness and satisfaction.

In his book, The Happiness Advantage, Shawn Achor explains that this commonly held belief – reaching our goals causes happiness – is really backwards. What has been proven after decades of on-going scientific research is just the opposite.

It’s happiness first then success. In reality, happiness leads to greater success in all areas of life: work, health, friendship, sociability …

Your Happiness Baseline

For people who are naturally happy, this is great news. But, what about the rest of us? If we’re not the naturally happy type does that mean there’s no hope and we’ll never feel as satisfied with life as our more naturally happy brethren?

Achor points out that this is not the case and that we can all experience the benefits. But, it does take work. In fact he says, “…happiness is not just a mood – it’s a work ethic.”

Scientists used to think that our outlook on life was essentially inherited and that we were genetically predisposed to viewing life as either a glass half empty or half full. But, that’s been proven not to be true. Each of can influence our level of happiness and do things on a day-to-day basis to lift our level of happiness.


Neuroscientists have found that meditation grows the left prefrontal cortex, which is the part of the brain responsible for feeling happy. I’ve blogged frequently about the many benefits of meditation. Achor lists it as one of seven specific things we can do daily to raise the level of our happiness baseline. His research identifies meditation as one of the most powerful happiness producing activities.

Two minutes of meditation a day will rewire your brain to raise happiness levels plus lower stress and improve immune function.

Here is a process to follow:



This research is proven and incredibly exciting. I’m off to meditate. Won’t you join me?

Enjoy and Breathe Easy

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Joanne Thompson

Joanne Thompson

Founder/Owner at Yoga for Self

Health is a precious gift and my goal is to help you live a healthier, happier life through yoga. Every private session is uniquely designed just for you. For a free telephone consultation call me at 303.818.4181. Discover whether personalized, private yoga instruction is right for you.
Joanne Thompson

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