Why Is The Happiness Advantage Important?
The “Happiness Advantage” is a phrase popularized by Shawn Achor. He wrote a book with the same title in 2010.
It is scientifically proven that positive brains contain a biological advantage over brains that are negative or neutral. Happiness Advantage is a principle that teaches people how to retrain their mindsets, their brains to focus on positivity in order to increase their performance and productivity.
When faced with stress and pressure, even brilliant people commit the most unintelligent thing possible; instead of investing in relationships with people, they divest or remove themselves from people, their social support groups. Sometimes people under duress choose to isolate themselves from other people. That choice removes them from recovering properly because they took away the tool that can help them.
Numerous studies discovered that social relationships are your best guarantee of improving personal well-being. It will also reduce stress significantly. When your stress levels are low, your body also releases a hormone that is both an effective antidote for depression and a formula for high performance.
A healthy relationship with your peer, your support group, or your community is one of the greatest predictors of happiness and success. It is important to have a social support network when the going gets tough. Having such a group helps people recover from an addiction of any kind, deal with loss, or combat various levels of stress or even depression.
Here are common thoughts taught to many of us before. When you work hard you will succeed. Once you are successful then you will be happy.
Many of us have been trained at home or at school that happiness is what you get when you are successful. They will say you will only succeed when you are the CEO of your own company or win the Nobel Peace Prize, or you become a famous public figure or acquire a million bucks. Such high dreams, such high expectations are hard to reach, not impossible, but still, a lot of things have to happen before that one high goal is attained, right?
Through various experiments and studies, Neuroscience and Positive Psychology discovered that it works the other way around. People become more successful when they are more positive and happier.
Let’s have a few examples and discover why this statement is true and accurate.
When medical doctors practice a positive mood or mindset before making a diagnosis, they showed more than double the creativity and intelligence than those doctors in a neutral state. The doctors with a positive mindset also give out accurate diagnoses at least 18 percent faster.
Most students in school who are prepped for positive thoughts just before taking their math achievement tests do far better than their neutral or negative peers.
Salespeople who are optimistic significantly outsell their pessimistic counterparts by more than 55 percent.
Here is the main takeaway: Our brains are hardwired to perform at their peak performance when they are positive, not when they are negative or even neutral.
How about more examples, you say? Remember that time when you felt that the universe was so good to you and you were getting what you’ve always wanted? Or felt that you were so lucky you were on top of the world? Remember that feeling? Then everything you did felt simple and easy. Everything felt exactly where they should be. You played your best game of whatever sport you loved doing. You performed your best at work because you just had a promotion and you were of course, happy. You just composed the best love poem ever because your other half just said “yes” when you proposed. You felt like a hero worthy of being in the hall of fame when you just finished coding a program that took a long time to finish and the end result was everything that your client wanted. How about that one time, when you woke up from an awesome dream, you felt great throughout the day and you felt that you can do anything? Ever felt that time seemed to fly so fast when you were doing something you loved? Maybe you were so happy, you moved like the Flash then? Happiness Advantage in action, wouldn’t you say?
When people adopt the positive mindset (when you make a focused effort to find the good in anything and be optimistic) or just be happy, then you are equipped with the tools you need to succeed and overcome obstacles easily.
Happy and positive people are a joy to be with. Positive people attract more positive people. More people in your circle means a bigger network of potential clients, partners, mentors, and peers who you can help and do the same for you in the future.
Remember that in today’s world, ironically, people sacrifice happiness for success only to lower their brains’ success rates. Fast-paced, hard-driving lives usually leave them feeling stressed, and overcome by the increasing pressure to succeed at any cost. It does not have to be that way. Instead of working hard to succeed so you can reach happiness, why not … work smarter instead? Remember also that when you love what you do, it doesn’t take much effort doing it.
Continue doing what you love because it will bring you more joy. When you love what you do, you will succeed easily because you are happy and you will always be at your best. People who adopt the Happiness Advantage will have the edge in performance, productivity and more likely to succeed. It’s just a matter of time.