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  • Writer's pictureJim Mercer

SamTastic Weekly Tip: 3/25/19 - Four things to Make you Happy.

Today’s tip: Four things to Make you Happy.

Being happy about your work and life is a significant indicator of whether you can be successful in working with other people.

The world’s second richest person, Bill Gates, is pretty happy.. .and the reason has little to do with money. In a recent Inc. magazine interview, Gates shared four things he does to be happy:

  1. Follow through on your commitments. How people become smarter as they age is not so much about increasing intellectual knowledge or accumulating more wealth (although both will happen by virtue of making good choices). It’s about intentionally choosing and following through on what matters most — following through on your commitments, as Gates said.

  2. Have a mindset of giving. The late motivational guru, Jim Rohn, said, “Only by giving are you able to receive more than you already have.” Through his generous foundation, Gates has achieved this on a scale most of us reading this article can’t fathom. In 2006, his close friend Warren Buffett, now the third-richest person on the planet, signed papers that give $31 billion of his fortune to fund the Gates Foundation’s work in fighting infectious diseases and reforming education. Closer to home, consider giving for your own well-being. Science has confirmedthat giving makes us feel happy, is good for our health, and evokes gratitude. One Harvard Business School reporteven concluded that the emotional rewards are the greatest when our generosity is connected to others, like contributing to a cancer-stricken friend’s GoFundMe Campaign. And you needn’t restrict your idea of giving to financial generosity. Consider as well the positive impact of giving your time, mentoring others, supporting a cause, fighting injustice, and having a pay-it-forward mentality.

  3. Treat your body like a sacred temple. Gates said that exercise leads to happiness. He is an avid tennis player. And according to research, he’s dead on. Exercise has been shown to improve your mood and decrease feelings of depression, anxiety, and stress. Conversely, if you cringe at the thought of having to fight for a treadmill at a crowded and sweaty gym, your mood can benefit from a simple exercise no matter the intensity or length of it. One studyof 24 women diagnosed with depression showed that exercise of any intensity significantly decreased feelings of depression. In fact, it reduced depressed mood 10 and 30 minutes following the physical activity.

  4. Put family first. The choice notto place family life on equal par with, or even ahead of career priorities, can be costly. Scientific analysis of the causes that lead to death in the workplace listed, among other things, “long hours/overtime” and “work-family conflict” as common sources of workplace stress destroying the health of U.S. workers. If work- life balance is a struggle of guilt because you think your business or career will suffer, the solution is simple: Set non-negotiable boundaries around your family priorities first, and then use the same rigor to place strict boundaries at work. Having solid lines around each area of life will ultimately make you more focused, efficient, and effective at work. And your kids will love that daddy or mommy comes home on time to watch a ballet recital or little league game.

Your SAM Daily Meeting is a perfect time to discuss each of these four principles.

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