What if you’re doing happiness all wrong?

What if you’re doing happiness all wrong?

via Forbes.com by Kevin Kruse

What if our chase for happiness has been completely wrong?

The emotional process of delaying happiness is one we are all familiar with. How many times have we told ourselves we’ll finally relax once we hit that milestone, or you’ll finally have balance after you finish this 65-hour work week? It’s an uphill chase with moving goalposts, a seemingly unattainable moving target. So how can we think about happiness and our own inner lives, so we can stop waiting for happiness and start enjoying it?

Dr. Susan David is a renowned Harvard Medical School psychologist and co-founder of the Harvard Institute of Coaching. She challenges the prevailing attitude that we should fix our difficult emotions through positive thinking and chasing happiness all the time. She draws on her 20+ years of research to instead introduce a revolutionary new concept called emotional agility. It changes the way people live, work, and lead in this very uncertain world. The idea was named a Harvard Business Review management idea of the year. Her new book is Emotional Agility: Get Unstuck, Embrace Change, and Thrive in Work and in Life.

I recently interviewed Susan for the LEADx Podcast where she discussed how to recognize when you need to grit, and when you need to quit. (The interview below has been lightly edited for space and clarity.)

Kevin Kruse: Will you tell us a time when you failed at something and what did you learn from it?

Dr. Susan David: I’ve had many failures, but probably one of the ones that stands out most for me is when I quit university. I had a fairly bad experience leading up to it where my father had been ill and died and I still went off, because that was the thing that everyone did. I realized after a while that it was not working for me and I was not working for it. I made a very difficult decision, which was to quit.

I think what I’ve learned from that experience and what is really an ongoing question for me is when do you grit and when do you quit? Society really holds up this idea that we should grit no matter what, we should muscle through. When we’re struggling with stuff at work, we should just get on with it. Yet, one of the signs of human adaptation is knowing when to persevere, but just as equally when you are persevering at something that is maybe incongruent with your values that has a low chance of success that you no longer enjoy. While there often seems to be a lot of shame in the idea of quitting, I actually think that there’s a huge amount of grace, dignity, and adaptation in that. The world is changing, we are changing, and we need to know how to be flexible with that context…

…keep reading the full & original article HERE