Posted on Leave a comment

Happiness at the Workplace and Life

We all want to be happy! But when we see our lives, we feel that happiness is missing. We work, make money, collect materials, make careers, and still we find that happiness is missing. Happiness is a very important factor to gauge our well being and mental health. There may be millions in your account, but if you are not happy, you are poor.

What are the factors which prevent us from being happy? We really need to know what they are:-

  1. Stay close to facts:- The main cause of your unhappiness is not the situation, but the way you think about it! If there are just $50 in left your bank account, you start to feel that you have become miserable. You start to feel pity of yourself. That feeling is wrong. Stay close to facts! It is true that you own less money, but you are not miserable. Stay close to the fact. If you imagine that this end of your world or life. Then you are just indulging in imaginations. These self-indulgences can create a hell of sadness. Staying close to facts is empowerment, which creates happiness. So in this case the fact is “only $50 left in your account”. Do not build stories around it other than being factual! The state of feeling miserable leads to sadness. Then you feel that your powers are gone. Then the emptiness can start engulf. Learn to analyze the situation with a critical and reasonable mind. Yes you are not in a very good financial situation, but are also not miserable. What factors led that now you have only $50 left in your account? What efforts you need to make to earn a good living. Maybe you need to find a better work. Maybe you need to cut your spending. Maybe you can just laugh at the situation. If you think positively, this moment can become an inspiring factor too. Look at the people who do not even have $50 in their account. There are hundreds and thousands of people in the world you are in real poverty and no means to feed themselves and their families. There are so many people in the world who sleep hungry at night and do not have any means of income. You are in much better situation. If you look at the history, so many people lost everything in wars. So many people lost all of their family members and had to flee their country empty-handed. But they still had to live. They still had to find happiness. So do not feel miserable so quickly unless there is a real reason behind to feel like this.
  2. Stop emotional reactions:- You will stay sad if you often create emotional reactions to what is said to you. It happens many times at workplaces when a boss or coworker has said something which may sound unfavorable to you. You instantly start to feel heart-broken! You feel that you just want hide your face and cry. You are feeling super emotional. Maybe their intentions were not as bad as you thought, you just felt like that. Stop expecting high-standards all the times! Stay close to reality! If some words can ruin your whole day, you yourself are responsible for your suffering. Someone’s a few words are not going to lower what you are. If you are a great person, you will stay a great person despite what was said to you. But if you react emotionally, your state of happiness is certainly going to go down. Even if someone had has said bad to you intentionally, do not react emotionally to it! Do not let their words take down your happiness. You should be guardian of your happiness. Happiness comes from inside! You cannot depend on external factors all the times for your happiness. Your happiness is precious! Learn to preserve it! The whole world can turn bad for you, but if you choose to be happy, you can be happy.
  3. You are not always a victim:- You maybe sometimes, but you are not “always” a victim. When wrong things happen in day-to-day life, you tend to feel that everyone is just taking advantage of you. Maybe, sometimes, it is true. But this is not always true. Stop portraying yourself a victim in every situation. Projecting yourself a victim means that you are accepting that you are not empowered. If you are feeling yourself not empowered, you yourself are pushing the happiness away from your life. Empowerment is source of happiness. Feeling of being victim is source of sadness. Then you will blame everyone. Even if you are really a victim, find ways to empower yourself.
  4. Learn to analyze reasonably:- For example, at a workplace, if you feel that you are being burdened with lots work, yes the situation requires proper organizing or communication with  your manager or co-workers, but you can still stay very happy. Just do what you can do, if you cannot compete every single task by end of the day, that is OK. Leave the workplace smiling and meet your family smiling at home.
  5. Do Random act of kindness:- Being kind towards others is a direct invitation to happiness. Kindness has positive Ripple effects. Kindness will not only make your heart happy, but also make a big difference in the world of others. Kind hearts are always happy hearts. Stop for people who needs help. Spend your time creating a better situation for them!
  6. Accumulating, not giving away:- We live under the wrong impression that collecting or accumulation money or materials will contribute to our well-being. Sometimes we fight or struggle for it. However, we do not realize that the real happiness lives in giving away, not collecting. Studies have shown that when we give something away (in the form of a donation or small gift), it makes our inside happy. It also shows we care for others too. Give to your community! Give to a charity! Give if your good friend needs help! Share if you cooked a delicious food! Giving is so wonderful! Practice it! It will put a smile on your face.
  7. You do not need to smart all the times:- Human brain is trained to find faults. We believe if we point out a mistake or error, we will be considered genius. Sometimes we do this because we are crazy to get appreciation all the times. Sometimes we do not shy to hurt others just to prove how smart we are. Learn to avoid it if this is not required. If someone is making an honest mistake, it is Ok. We all make mistakes and learn from it. Do not try to become a judge all the times. Let things settle themselves.
  8. Ego:- Ego is number one enemy of happiness. Ego and happiness just cannot stay together. It is OK to feel proud of your careers, accomplishments, education, wealth, or beauty in a good way, however if this is leading to ego, then you are just killing your happiness. Ego won’t let you live a fulfilled life. You true accomplishment is being humble and happy. Simple and ago-less living is just like a the best flowerpot for your beautiful plant of the heart.
  9. Adopt a minimalist living:- Turn a TV on or check something on internet, flip a page in a magazine or start reading a newspaper, we all are constantly shown hundreds of advertisements to allure us to buy those things. And we do end up buying some of them. Stop that impulse! Minimalist living is the best living. Not only too much buying makes our home congested with unused things, but also becomes the biggest enemy of our wallet. Stop this impulse for your long-term happiness! It will also create more savings, which means that there will be more than $50 in your account. Same applies to your bank account, save so that you can use it in emergencies, but do not waste your lifetime just accumulating too much wealth, as we all know that money does not mean anything more than paying the bills.
  10. Move on:- We all face difficult people from time to time. Sometimes at home or work, things get a bit nasty and then we end up breaking up precious connections. Human brain is trained to pick up negativity as quickly as possible. We often forget the good time and tend to focus on all the bad things first. In this situation, we think that criticizing those people over and over will damage them, but actually we damage ourselves. It comes at the cost of our own peace of mind. Anger harms more who is angry. Real happiness comes from moving on, and slowing converting your angry feelings into happy ones. If you are happy in a bad situation, actually you are the winner.
  11. Loving people, plants and animals:- Like anger, racism harms the racist more. Bad feelings create a bad mood, which result into bad mental-health, which result into gloominess. This kind of gloominess effects everyone. Stop making generalizations! There are are good or bad people in all communities, faiths, and everywhere in the world. Humanity is surviving because there are lots of good people everywhere in the world. Practice equality! When you will think that we are all the same people, came from the same source, and now are in the same boat, it will make you happy.
  12. Enjoy others’ achievements:- When your family member, or friend or a colleague achieves something big, enjoy their achievements! Jealously and happiness also cannot stay together. Let others grow! Keep your heart big and vast like an ocean. If you are happy over the milestones and achievements of others, you will be happy all the times. Congratulations them, not just as a formality, like a real deal!
  13. Accept your bodies:- This is another biggest enemy of happiness. In the media age, we check mirror not to dress up or correct the collars of our shirt, we use it more to analyze what is missing in our bodies. Accept yourself the way you are! You are beautiful! Your skin colour is great. Your body weight is great. That mole on your face looks so good. Do not compare yourself to what you just have seen on the Instagram! Instagram people look good too and you look good too! Learn to separate virtual and real world!
  14. Form real friendships:- Although temporary isolation is not bad, but for longer happy and healthy living, meet people and form beautiful friendships. Be happy with them! Dance with them! Social media is good as long as you do not overuse, but meet real people too. Your social media followers are not coming to help you if you are sick in the hospital, only your real friend from real life will show up. Appreciate your friends! Plan weekends together and go out for fun!
  15. Then what? You do not have right to be sad? – Sadness is not dangerous if this is a good sadness. Yes we need to be sad sometimes. I consider myself a happy person, but sometimes I get sad too. However, we should become enough intelligent to learn the facts behind the sadness. Yes, there may be a death of loved one, you lost something real, you or your loved one is sick- yes we all become sad. But if the sadness is temporary, then it is all good. If the sadness is prolonged, then either you should find out the reasons behind your sadness or make efforts to come out of it as soon as possible because prolonged sadness can cause a big depressions.
  16. Dance to be happy ———


Posted on Leave a comment

Economics of Happiness

Happiness is an important, but often overlooked item when someone is discussing how successful and well developed a country is.

Countries are often pitted head to head against each other, vying for the top spots on charts measuring average incomes of households, net profit earned, GDP, per capita income, unemployment rates, crude-oil prices, and how much their stocks are worth. We are now judging a nation’s development through these old-fashioned statistics or numbers. These statistics are brought together with some standard mathematical formulas, however it’s a good question if these numbers can also measure smile or sadness on your face? However, as society evolves, many other types of measurements come to light, from the serious, like the pay gap between men and women, to the silly, like how many public washrooms there are per square kilometer. Despite all of these measurements, though, the happiness of citizens is rarely talked about. Measuring levels of positivity, though seemingly insignificant, can determine the number of people immigrating to the country, help depressed people get the support they need, and even strengthen economy.

The lack of good feeling can also be the product of other more malignant factors, such as lack of employment, or an abundance of stress in general. Naturally, people will gravitate towards countries that may be less developed, but are in a more optimistic state of mind. It is surprising that stress levels, anxiety, or depression rates are higher in the developed countries than their less developed fellows.

Depression and other mental illnesses are life threatening. It is imperative people suffering from internal diseases get the help and support they need, which is why the happiness quotient matters so much. People are often more likely to seek help when they are confronted with the cold hard truth. Filling out the questionnaire that determines their positivity towards life, they can easily see if they are crossing over into dangerous, depressive territories. Even better, workplaces can retrieve the results, and then discreetly monitor employees who may be at risk.

Happier workers make for more productive workers, and a boost in productivity will naturally lead to more profit and a stronger economy. Plus, with less negativity, there will be less tension and stress in the workplace, leading to a happier environment. Also, as mental illness causes many health problems, a higher degree of contentment will put less strain on healthcare systems, and save the money that is usually put towards antidepressants and similar medications.

Obviously, happiness is an important, but often overlooked item when someone is discussing how successful and well developed a country is. What people often forget is that the men and women working within society are the ones that truly matter, not profit. After all, money doesn’t necessarily buy happiness, nor does it buy you true friends and loyal family members to look out for you. Our society needs to change from the money, money, money mindset to a more beneficial, healthier train of thought that focuses on inner peace and the enjoyment of life.

At last, if people of the country are not happy, then we cannot call the country developed, doesn’t matter what numbers are saying and what policies their government is adopting. A smile on a face is important!

Posted on Leave a comment

The Power of Hope

All of humanity is based upon the notions of what could be, focusing on the future rather than the present. Rarely is anyone truly, wholly satisfied with the life they are living, preferring to think of the time to come as a golden place where their wishes can be fulfilled. This method of thinking, of hoping, is the pinnacle of human nature and is an intrinsic part of society. All revolutionary ideas begin with a farfetched dream, grown from the hope for a better world someday, somewhere. In short, it is a powerful ideal capable of altering history, yet is humble enough to make a difference in anyone’s life.

The most common way people use hope is to generate lists of traits to develop or events that need to happen in order to create a better future for them. It can be as simple as, “I hope it will not rain today,” or as heavy as, “I hope my dream university accepts me.” All of these are fragments and puzzle pieces that can come together to form a bigger picture of someone’s life. Each segment is a key to unlock a brighter world, one where everyone is joyful and everything is just as it should be. Although most people understand not all hopes come to fruition, the wishes still define a person’s individuality and can reveal their inner thought processes and priorities.

Another way hope affects human lives is by alleviating the pain of uncertainty. They stem from a serious reason that sometimes touch on the theme of life and death. For example, when a loved one is ill, people hope for their health and relief of suffering as a way to provide strength to both the patient and themselves. It inspires action with its gravity, and provokes the yearning to fight and survive tough periods of time. In short, this type of hope allows people to keep their chin up and remain calm during crisis situations.

So far, the powers of hope described apply only to certain individuals or a small group of people. However, society as a whole requires the possibility of improvement to continue to function and evolve. Most inventions are the results of wishes for improvement, spawned through mass-demand and necessity. Additionally, in a deeper and more complex way, cultural norms are also products of hopeful thinking turned into action by certain revolutionaries.

As illustrated, hope is a powerful mechanism acting on scales great and small, benefiting the lives of individuals and the global community. Wherever and whenever it exists, it works to generate changes of attitude, inspire strength, and moves the human race forwards towards improvement. The influence and capabilities of hope may be intangible, but they indisputably play a vital role in charting the course of the human race, shining in the back of the mind like a star guiding the way.

Posted on 1 Comment

Countless possibilities of social media in education

My final year students have each set up blogs where they regularly record their thoughts about the material we cover. I also use Blogger to record occasional research updates that might be of interest to readers of my textbook, and with a view to incorporating these into a future edition.” David Hardman, psychologist at London Metropolitan University, UK

In the present day, everyone on the globe is connected through the internet, specifically through social media. From talking to friends across the globe to bringing news to tapping fingers the moment they are confirmed, the highly complex interconnected web is rich with information and opportunities. However, it is often taken for granted, used to watch cat videos and people’s dancing fails instead of expanding minds and providing the base for independent research and development. Social media has the potential to be an educational tool, used for good instead of for procrastinating. By rebranding its purpose, students everywhere can reap the benefits of a global education.

One fairly new feature of social media is the ability to make video calls from any computer with a camera. This, when implemented in the classroom, translates into having the opportunity to invite engaging experts to give interactive lectures without the costs associated with travel. Similarly, students can now hold face-to-face consultations with their professors from anywhere, which can be a huge bonus for learners who love to travel, or have circumstances preventing them from being present in class. This way, unlike a recorded message or an email, the learning experienced becomes personalized and engaging.

Additionally, networking sites such as Facebook and LinkedIn can help students practice interpersonal communication skills necessary for building a life after school. By offering free workshops on topics such as how to send brief, professional messages and how to clean up their web presence in order to show themselves in the best light, Facebook can easily be turned into a bottomless hole of misery into a tool for guiding people towards their dream career. Similarly, social media sites known for a special feature, such as the beautiful graphics seen on Tumblr, can offer crash courses in the basics of their unique field. This quick, but efficient teaching strategy will equip learners with employable skills.

Obviously, the most valued part of social media is its ability to replace face-to-face communication to a certain degree. Its ability for someone to reply to a message that will be instantaneously seen by someone on the other side of the world make it perfect for use in large lecture halls, where it is easy for one voice to get lost among hundreds. By setting up a group chat or forum, students and teachers can interact in live-time, by posting questions, starting debates related to the subject, and questioning the content’s validity. Teachers can address issues as they arise, focusing on areas students have the most trouble with.

As one can see, when implemented appropriately within the classroom, social media can be a useful tool for engaging students, personalizing content, and simply ensuring everyone receives the education they want and deserve at their own pace. Although commonly used as an outlet for mindless entertainment, a few improvements can easily turn a mindless activity into a thought provoking one, at almost no cost. By utilizing video chat features, adapting to the high regard society holds social media in, and addressing student concerns live in the classroom, the time sucking monster can be tamed into any learner’s best friend.

Posted on 3 Comments

It’s you, not productivity apps, who can make you productive

IF you enjoy buying productivity apps for your smart phone, with a mind to getting more done in less time, you should know that automated tools of this nature aren’t the only ways to boost efficiency. Usually, your mindset will be the key to whether you become more productive or continue to produce at your current rate! Since your attitude plays such an important role in how much you produce, you shouldn’t need to rely on apps or other automated tools at all, although these applications may be fun to use. Here are some tips for creating the right mindset for success!

1. Prioritize: We have so many things to do during our days.  As you know, every day has 24 hours. Out of these 24 hours, we typically spend 6-8 hours sleeping, 2-3 hours eating, drinking coffee/tea, exercising, et cetera! This leaves us with 8 to 10 hours in which to work! So it is very important to take a look at your to-do list and then prioritize tasks. To get things done in an efficient manner, implement a system whereby you label tasks as critical, urgent, important and “need to do”.

Getting the most important tasks out of the way will reduce your stress levels and give you a boost of welcome confidence!

2. Keep Your Thoughts Positive: Our minds process seventy thousand thoughts per day! Thinking is great, but thinking about negative things will tend to bring more chaos into your life. For example, if you have bad thoughts about an old friend, ex-partner, or boss, learn to nip them in the bud, as they really do you no good. They are like poison in your system and they hold you back from happiness and progress. You are not harming enemies by thinking badly of them – you are only hurting yourself!

To cite another example, if you are worrying about how to pay a bill or you are worrying about a mortgage application which you filled out at the bank, any negative thoughts that you have are not going to have a positive impact on the situation’s end result. In this sense, they are wasted energy which hinders productivity. The best strategy is to think of every life issue that you are facing and then work actively towards a viable solution for each struggle. Instead of laying in the bed and worrying about things, get organized and deal with problems. If you can’t find a solution, talk to an expert or do some research online. You’ll probably find that there is a way out of the darkness – it’s all about facing problems head-on and believing that you have the power to solve them!

3. Take notes: Keeping short notes of everything which you need to get done will be a good way to stay organized. Keep your notes short and to the point. You may consider using on-line cloud-based services, so that you are able to check your notes via any electronic device. We all lead busy lives and we tend to forget many important things which are related to meeting times, project details, family, friends and appointments. Therefore, keeping concise records of important things will definitely make your life a lot easier. You’ll find that these notes reduce pressure on your mind, as it won’t need to remember so much. By transferring important thoughts to paper or an electronic notepad, you’ll de-stress and avoid forgetting what you really need to keep tabs on!

4. Unplug at Bedtime: When you go to sleep at night, create an electronics “blackout zone”. This means turning off your phone, computer, tablets, TVs, music systems (music should be ok, if you do manage to access deep sleep by listening to tunes!). If possible, disconnect your Wi-Fi and other invisible signals which are close to your bed. In today’s digital world,  electronics devices play important roles in almost every aspect of our lives – however, they also create many health and wellness hazards, such as repetitive task syndrome, a pre-occupied mind and information overload – so, it is very important to unplug when you need rest. Unplugging is the best way to re-charge your batteries by accessing deep and healing sleep!

5. Conquer Social Media Addiction: We all love the Internet and social media. After all, it’s great to share your world with followers and friends, by posting photos, thoughts, collections and other important data. However, social media is highly addictive and it can really get in the way of productivity. If you are checking your Facebook app every 5 minutes on your smart phone, then you are a social media addict and you need to set limits in order to get more important work done during the day. To enhance productivity, create a social  media schedule, by checking your profiles and feeds morning, noon, and evening. You’ll find that you miss very little and that you’re better able to focus on work.

As you can see, small lifestyle changes will add up to big productivity gains. A little bit of change in your life will promote a simpler, healthier and more productive mindset. It is great to learn about – and use – new innovations and technology. However, you should make sure that they improve your life, rather than making you inefficient.

Posted on 2 Comments

Let life be musical

Multiple studies have shown that playing a musical instrument slows down brain aging and leads to higher performance in work and school. Music combines creative expression with motor skills, making it the perfect hobby. So what’s stopping you from learning a new instrument to fill in your spare time and keep your brain active? All it takes is picking and buying an instrument, finding a qualified instructor, and taking the time to practice and hone your new skill.

First, you must select the instrument you want to learn. Consider the types of music you listen to and the instruments you enjoy the sound of. Do not take heed of what the ‘popular’ instruments are or what the people around you play. Music is highly personal. Once you have decided what you want to play, it’s time to go out and purchase it. If you know you will only be playing for a short time, you can also rent the instrument. No matter what, make sure you pick a reliable provider and purchase an instrument of good quality. Don’t hesitate to ask the professionals at the store for advice.

Next, it’s time to find a teacher. Online sites like Craigslist, newspapers, and ads are all good places to find a qualified instructor. Even better, ask your friends for recommendations. Also, make sure you compare the prices, and the level of experience each teacher has. Remember that the higher the level you are at, the higher the cost of a lesson. Make sure the instructor you choose is experienced, and has a good reputation. If you choose to go the cheapest route, you may find yourself taking low quality lessons that waste your time.

Practice makes perfect, as the saying goes, so take time out of your day to play your instrument. You won’t advance very fast if lessons are the only time you take to play. Depending on your level, you should take at least half an hour out of every day to practice. If you reach an advanced level, the time you spend will greatly increase, so be sure you can keep up with the commitment. During your session, play the repertoire as well as the technical requirements like the scales. A wide variety of pieces to play will prevent boredom.

No matter what you choose to do with the skills you gain, there is no doubt you will cherish the musical memories you make for life.

Wordography: Gurdeep Pandher
Photography: Minerva Studio
Music: David Hollandsworth

Posted on 2 Comments

Sleeping Restfully

There’s no doubt we all enjoy sleeping and acknowledge that being well-rested is very important, but with all of the deadlines at work, your personal projects, and family time, it can be hard to get the proper amount of shuteye you need. However, rest is very important, and not having the time to take a nine hour session doesn’t mean you can’t take out seven or six, or as many as you can. The following tips will help you make the most of your sleeping time, ensuring you get quality, not just quantity.

When you’re still slaving away at the presentation due tomorrow at one in the morning, you know there’s no chance you’ll be able to get in the recommended hours of sleep before you eight o’clock commute. However, this doesn’t mean sleeping is out of the question. Simply take out a timer and set yourself up for a twenty minute power nap. This nap will carry you a while longer, giving you a boost of energy without keeping you up when you finally finish the project at three in the morning.

Having trouble falling asleep? You’re not alone. Insomnia is common, but can be prevented. First of all, cut back on caffeine. Ideally, never consume any caffeine after lunch, and do not exceed more than two or three cups of coffee a day. Another way to fall asleep quickly is to read before bed. Don’t use your phone or computer, as the light suppresses the hormones that bring about rest. Even better: read your school textbooks or any other informational book; sleepiness guaranteed.

Exercise also tires you out, making sleep more deep and restful. Even if you do not usually have insomnia, regular physical activity will provide benefits. Walk or bike when and where you can, play a competitive tournament with friends, or join the gym. However, do not exercise two hours before bed since adrenaline from activity can keep you up. Yoga, however, is the exception. Ending your day with a long stretch and calm, slow movements can also prepare you for bed.

Even on your busiest days, you should try to fit sleeping into your schedule. Otherwise, if you consistently do not get your recommended hours, you could be at risk for many health problems like heart disease; and under eye bags are never attractive. If you have insomnia, try to pinpoint the cause of your condition and adjust your lifestyle accordingly. However, if you still cannot sleep no matter what you do, consider seeing a doctor who will prescribe you medications to take. You’ll feel much better once a good night’s rest no longer eludes you.