Happiness Is Matter
IT IS often said that happiness is a choice. But isn't that easier said than done? Can people really choose to be happy at such a stressful time, especially with global challenges such as Covid-19? Research suggests that there are several reasons that people can and should choose to be happy, even when it is a difficult choice.
For a start, there is a growing body of evidence indicating that being happy is associated with a better immune system. Several researchers do their research on the infected people and their results showed that volunteers who were happier and exhibited more positive emotions were less likely to get the cold. This finding was maintained after controlling for prechallenge virus-specific antibodies, virus-type, age, sex, education, race, and body mass. Other researchers reported similar results with influenza virus (that causes flu). I wonder if the same results would extend for the Coronavirus.
At times of stress and uncertainty, it is easy to panic and become irrational, making decisions that may not be in our best interest. To defeat Covid-19, it is essential to remain positive, optimistic and collaborative; choosing to be happy will support all of that.
Now, you have a question like what practical steps that we can take to help choose to be happy and positive? Here are five suggestions:-
1. Have an Impact Statement: People who have a clear sense of purpose are both happy and successful. At my university, we ask every staff and student to develop a statement that describes how they will use their lives, their capabilities and their personal influence to have a positive impact on the world.
2. Say Thank You: Commit to thanking at least one person who has made a difference in your life, each week. This will change your life.
3. Stay Active: Choose a physical activity that you enjoy and can do regularly. I like walking, and climbing the stairs. Others may choose running, walking or Yoga. Whatever you choose, commit to it at least three times a week.
4. Use Positive Language: We live in a world that is made of our words. Choose to communicate and frame situations using positive, rather than negative, language. This will help make us, and those around us, more positive.
5. Rewire Your Brain: Our brains are wired to protect us. That is why it is easier for our minds to pick negative stimuli. Having a daily practice of writing down the 5 things that we are grateful for will build more positive and happy connections in the brain making it more likely to choose happiness.
Choosing happiness is a rational choice, not only on a personal level but also on an organisational and national level.