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Happyful... The Love Child of Happy and Mindful

 

  • The more time we spend being present the more happiness we create in our lives, it is that simple.   

It is scientifically proven that people who spend more time living in the moment are happier, healthier, more optimistic, and have a greater satisfaction with life overall. 

Quoted in an article printed in The Guardian “Psychologists have found that people are distracted from the task at hand nearly half the time, and this daydreaming consistently makes them less happy.”  The authors write in the journal Science: "A human mind is a wandering mind and a wandering mind is an unhappy mind. The ability to think about what is not happening is a cognitive achievement that comes at an emotional cost.”  The team concluded that reminiscing, thinking ahead or daydreaming tends to make people more miserable, even when they are thinking about something pleasant.  

So, when it’s freezing up in Buffalo, and we are daydreaming about being on a boat in the Caribbean, we actually feel worse than if we embrace the freezing moment in Buffalo.  Crazy as it seems, the more often we stop our mind from wandering and bring our thoughts back to the present moment the happier we are with our lives.  

At Right Here Right Now we believe happiness is a choice.  

In a Huffington Post article entitled “This Is Scientific Proof That Happiness Is A Choice” they report “One theory in psychology research suggests that we all have a happiness “set-point” that largely determines our overall well-being. We oscillate around this set point, becoming happier when something positive happens or the opposite, afterwards returning to equilibrium.

But this set-point, to a certain extent, can be reset. Although our general mood levels and well-being are partially determined by factors like genetics and upbringing, roughly 40 percent of our happiness is within our control, according to some experts, and a large body of research in the field of positive psychology has shown that happiness is a choice that anyone can make. As psychologist William James put it, “The greatest discovery of any generation is that a human can alter his life by altering his attitude.”

Another fact we find interesting;  In the list of The 5 Things People Regret Most On Their Deathbed is the following;  “I wish that I had let myself be happier.”

"This is a surprisingly common one. Many did not realize until the end that happiness is a choice. They had stayed stuck in old patterns and habits. The so-called 'comfort' of familiarity overflowed into their emotions, as well as their physical lives. Fear of change had them pretending to others, and to their selves, that they were content, when deep within, they longed to laugh properly and have silliness in their life again."

A question I like to ask people is “would you rather have more happiness in your life or more mindfulness in your life?”  We’re often told that we need to be more mindful – does anyone even know what that means, or why being more mindful would make us happier?  According to pop culture, we’re all a 3-day meditation retreat and a 6-pack of 75-minute hot yoga classes away from being mindful.  Let’s get real – if most people have 3 days free, they’re not sitting still for that time and definitely don’t want to be hot for that long.  

Mindfulness has become the buzz word of the day and everyone seems to be searching for it.  But do we really know what it is we are searching for?   

Let’s take a moment to define mindfulness from the Oxford Dictionary - “A mental state achieved by focusing one's awareness on the present moment, while calmly acknowledging and accepting one's feelings, thoughts, and bodily sensations.”  

That’s the whole enchilada!  Mindfulness is being Right Here Right Now!  

So, if you want to do a 3-day meditation retreat or 75-minute hot yoga by all means do that. Do whatever works in your life to spend more moments being present.  With Right Here Right Now, there is no “doing it wrong,” any way you choose to snag a few seconds or moments in your day, hooray!  We find the road to happier is as simple as taking 10 seconds to stop, take a breath, look around and find something to be grateful for. No matter what you’re doing, you’ll get a boost of what we like to call Happyful – the happiness that comes from being present, even if it’s only for a few moments.

If happiness is a choice, would you choose to be happy?

Who would answer no to that?  We all want to be happier (and thinner and richer, but let’s stay focused); most of us can’t just wiggle our nose and be happy, or can we? 

What most people are looking for is a happiness personal trainer.  We want some exercises to shortcut our way to being able to look on the bright side of things, even when things totally suck.  We all need a reminder to help us catch our breath, and get out of our head, so we can start thinking clearly and living in the moment.  People ultimately want that perfectly blended cocktail of Happy and Mindful:  Happyful.  We need Happyful tools so we can create a routine, and approach being happy the same way we would work at anything else. Happyfulness then becomes a muscle memory, and it becomes second nature to slow down and be present.   

This is where the Right Here Right Now “Bump” fits into our mental exercise routine, think of the “Bump” as your mental free weights – more reps = more Happyful.  We created the “Bump” symbol because we found, trying to remember to be present during our busy day was flipping hard.  We began putting the RHRN “Bump” on the things we use every day, coffee mugs, water bottles, clothing and a whole bunch of other stuff that we all bump into during our daily trek.  We figured it was easier for people to have a reminder on the things they already see and use than to try and remember to carry your “lucky rock” or some such thing.

Here is what we found.  It works!  The subtle reminder of the “Bump” is enough to nudge your brain back to the present moment.  It exercises your mental muscle and the more often you flex that muscle the more you build a habit. 

Something else we’ve experienced, being present breeds happyful and being happyful breeds kindness.  People who are happier are kinder to themselves and others.  Winner, winner, winner!

Like most things in life, repetitiveness creates habit.  The good news is, we’ve made incorporating the “Bump” into your routine easy, useful and cool.

Most of us are not looking to achieve Zen, nirvana, or any other “highest state” of mindfulness, at Right Here Right Now, we embrace that messiness and work through it a few seconds at a time.  Whether we bump ourselves to the present moment once a day or 50 times a day that’s up to us, we begin to see and feel the change and quite frankly, it feels good. 

Being Right Here Right Now doesn’t matter who you are, what you drive, if you have a current mindful routine or if you’ve never stopped to think about what it means to be present.  We know that everyone just needs to get out of their own head sometimes and that we all need a little reminder to enjoy the present moment. 

We believe that it’s not just about mindful – it’s about the Happyful that we can be when we let go of the thoughts of the past or worry of the future and embrace being present.  We didn’t make this stuff up, it’s science: Being more present leads to being happier.  

Right Here Right Now reminds you to choose happyful.

RHRN ~ Suzanne