Everyday Happiness - Finding Harmony and Bliss
533-The Yin and Yang of Happiness

533-The Yin and Yang of Happiness

November 16, 2022

How happiness is defined varies by person. In this episode, we talk about happiness definitions by happiness scientists. Tune in to see if you agree! 

 

Transcript:

 

Welcome to Everyday Happiness where we create lasting happiness, in about 2 minutes a day,  through my signature method of Intentional Margins® (creating harmony between your to-dos and your priorities), happiness science, and musings about life. 

 

I'm your host Katie Jefcoat and what we know is that happiness isn’t always a fleeting feeling ‘I’m happy and then I’m not’ - it’s an overall satisfaction of your life.  Are you a happy person?  A lot of people describe happiness as a range of positive emotions. 

 

In her 2007 book The How of Happiness, positive psychology researcher Sonja Lyubomirsky (LU-BO-MER-SKE) describes how scientists refer to happiness as “the experience of joy, contentment, or positive well-being, combined with a sense that one’s life is good, meaningful, and worthwhile.”

 

So while happy people experience more positive emotions, joy, love, contentment, and experience less negative emotions, that doesn’t mean to say that happy people don’t have negative emotions, of course they do.  But what this research indicates, is that positive emotion is only one side of the coin.   You can experience a lot of positive emotions and still not be a truly happy person.  

 

The research indicates that you need the other side of the proverbial coin too.  And that’s having a sense of satisfaction and purpose in your life. Feeling like you are progressing toward your life goals.  

 

I think of this as a yin-and-yang.  You can have a high sense of purpose and satisfaction and not experience a wealth of happy emotions.  I think about the months after having babies and having a high purpose, but oftentimes, because of hormones, new moms, in those early months are not flooded with an abundance of happy emotions.  

 

The goal is to find harmony between both sides of the coin, for you.  The one side is happy emotions and the other is satisfaction and purpose.  When we put them all together, we achieve fulfilled happiness.   

 

Join me in conversation about happiness topics over on Instagram @everydayhappinesswithkatie

 

And remember, kindness is contagious.

 

Get Everyday Happiness delivered to your inbox by subscribing at: https://www.katiejefcoat.com/happiness

 

And, let’s connect on social at @everydayhappinesswithkatie  and join the community on the hashtags #IntentionalMargins and #everydayhappinesswithkatie on Instagram

 

Links:  https://onamission.bio/everydayhappiness/

 

532-Discovering Gratitude Glitter

532-Discovering Gratitude Glitter

November 15, 2022

Gratitude can sometimes feel like tiny specks of glitter, but when you gather them into a pile, you have a mountain of things to be grateful for. Not sure what I'm talking about? Tune into this episode to learn more! 

 

Transcript:

 

Welcome to Everyday Happiness where we create lasting happiness, in about 2 minutes a day,  through my signature method of Intentional Margins® (creating harmony between your to-dos and your priorities), happiness science, and musings about life. 

 

I'm your host Katie Jefcoat and what we know is that gratitude reminds us how satisfied we are with our lives.  I think sometimes we can forget the good things.  If we can tap into gratitude, whether it’s a crappy day, a crappy week, a crappy year, if we can find something to truly feel gratitude for, it will, scientifically, help us feel a better sense of well-being.  

 

That seems really hard when you don’t ‘feel’ like you have anything you want to be grateful for.  Now, I’m not a doctor, if you are feeling so blue and you can’t see a way out, please seek out a mental health professional, you deserve to get the help you need.   

 

I’m not saying that everyday is filled with butterflies, rainbows and glitter.  What I am trying to say is that, hopefully, we can find those specks of glitter to be grateful for.  Hold on to them.  And gather more, little by little if that’s what it takes.  Until you can see the specks of glitter turn into a little pile in your hand.  I’m imagining literally collecting specks of gratitude glitter.  Soon, when those specks are piled together, it looks like a bigger sparkle of gratitude.  And, over time, we see the gratitude grow, we have more sparkle, and we can start to retrain our brains to see the gratitude sparkles even through the crappy stuff we have going on too.  

 

So I’m curious, what do you think of this concept of gratitude glitter?  Let’s have a chat over on Instagram.  I’m at @everydayhappinesswithkatie

 

And remember, kindness is contagious.

 

Get Everyday Happiness delivered to your inbox by subscribing at: https://www.katiejefcoat.com/happiness

 

And, let’s connect on social at @everydayhappinesswithkatie  and join the community on the hashtags #IntentionalMargins and #everydayhappinesswithkatie on Instagram

 

Links:  https://onamission.bio/everydayhappiness/

531-Is Your Gratitude on Autopilot?

531-Is Your Gratitude on Autopilot?

November 14, 2022

Did you know that you take gratitude for granted? Learn more in this episode of Everyday Happiness! 

 

Transcript:

 

Welcome to Everyday Happiness where we create lasting happiness, in about 2 minutes a day,  through my signature method of Intentional Margins® (creating harmony between your to-dos and your priorities), happiness science, and musings about life. 

 

I'm your host Katie Jefcoat and what happens when we ‘phone it in’ - you know, like we’re saying the words in our gratitude practice, but we almost start to expect it and it seems very auto-pilot.  

 

This was a conversation I had with Stephanie, a Margin Maker in the Intentional Margins® community.  (That’s what we call the members in our community)  She expressed how she wondered if she was taking gratitude for granted.  That’s an interesting thought.  It can become routine and pretty soon your gratitude is on auto-pilot. I am grateful for my spouse or partner, the kids, the food on the table, the place that I live, my health, day after day.  All things you are grateful for, no doubt, but it’s routine. 

 

During our discussion we uncovered that perhaps, gratitude also has peaks and valleys, and it’s natural to find yourself on auto-pilot every now and then.  We questioned whether anyone can be truly grateful in this peak of awareness all the time.   I think feeling gratitude can seem less sincere when you are phoning it in.  

 

I invite you to check in with your gratitude practice, ask yourself, is this becoming auto-pilot?  Are there things I can do to shake it up?  For me, I’m going back to the tiny little things that I often overlook and focusing on that for a while during my gratitude practice.  So it could look like one day, focusing on the kids, but instead of saying the children, I am going to dig deeper and peel the layers of why.  What is it specifically about one of the children right now that gives me all the gratitude feels.  My goal is to feel that gratitude again when focusing more intently on peeling back the layers.  

 

I’d love to know if this technique works for you and how your gratitude practice is going, so reach out to me @everydayhappinesswithkatie on Instagram.  

 

And remember, kindness is contagious.

Get Everyday Happiness delivered to your inbox by subscribing at: https://www.katiejefcoat.com/happiness

 

And, let’s connect on social at @everydayhappinesswithkatie  and join the community on the hashtags #IntentionalMargins and #everydayhappinesswithkatie on Instagram

 

Links:  https://onamission.bio/everydayhappiness/

530-Living in the Moment to Improve Happiness

530-Living in the Moment to Improve Happiness

November 13, 2022

Thoughts of the past and future are shown to decrease happiness, so how can we learn to live more in the moment? Tune in to find out! 

 

Transcript:

 

Welcome to Everyday Happiness where we create lasting happiness, in about 2 minutes a day,  through my signature method of Intentional Margins® (creating harmony between your to-dos and your priorities), happiness science, and musings about life. 

 

I'm your host Katie Jefcoat and there is this hum in the happiness readings, like an overarching theme that happy people are more mindful than the rest of us, they tend to be more present and have this high level of gratitude for the moment. 

 

I guess, if you can enjoy what you have, you are not wanting for more, which can make you unhappy.  

 

There are these theories that when you are present in the moment, you are happier than when you are thinking of the past or what’s next.   

 

The idea in the research is that looking back at achievements, won’t make us happy now.  So, say you got the 30 under 30 award and it was a huge accomplishment.  Now, you are in your 40s and your happiness has baselined again.  That’s the hedonic adaptation principle.  

 

There is this idea that thoughts create our unhappiness, not our circumstances

 

Some people think this might be one of life’s greatest secrets because it seems like the opposite is true—that if we could just get circumstances to change, we would finally be happy.  

 

We know through the research that circumstances do not make you happier. More money doesn't necessarily make you happier.  There are people all over the world who have less and are happy.  Some people are sick, their circumstances suck, but those circumstances are not necessarily making them unhappy, it’s their thoughts that are. 

 

Memories are some of the most common thoughts that rob our happiness, but even dreams of the future do this, simply because they take us out of the richness of the present moment and into a made-up reality.  

 

So, I’m working on being more present and I hope this inspires you to think about ways you can be more present too.  

 

Let’s connect on social at @everydayhappinesswithkatie and join the community on the hashtags #IntentionalMargins and #everydayhappinesswithkatie on Instagram  

 

And if you enjoyed this episode of Everyday Happiness,make sure that you hit the subscribe button wherever you are tuning into today, so that you never miss an episode. 

 

Until next time, remember kindness is contagious. 

Get Everyday Happiness delivered to your inbox by subscribing at: https://www.katiejefcoat.com/happiness

And, let’s connect on social at @everydayhappinesswithkatie  and join the community on the hashtags #IntentionalMargins and #everydayhappinesswithkatie on Instagram

 

Links:  https://onamission.bio/everydayhappiness/

 

529-Gather Your Thoughts

529-Gather Your Thoughts

November 12, 2022

Taking time to pause throughout the day, especially when life feels hectic, can be key to resetting your mind and balancing your priorities. Learn more in this episode! 

 

Transcript:

 

Welcome to Everyday Happiness where we create lasting happiness, in about 2 minutes a day,  through my signature method of Intentional Margins® (creating harmony between your to-dos and your priorities), happiness science, and musings about life. 

 

I'm your host Katie Jefcoat and I’ve been working on building the muscle of pausing.  With our ‘busy’ lives, and I say ‘busy’ in air quotes because I have a love-hate relationship with the busy badge of honor.  Ok, in our abundant and fulfilling lives, mindfulness for the pause to take a deep breath and enjoy the moment is a technique that brings more awareness to being present and you don’t look back at the end of the day and wonder what you did all day.   That happens to me all the time.  I can get caught on auto-pilot and not really be thinking about what I’m doing.  

 

Meditation is something I am exploring and working on, but it’s not where my personality naturally gravitates, so I’ve been exploring this mindful pause.  So far this week, it’s grabbing my coffee and sitting on my back porch, without my phone, to just “gather my thoughts”.  I say “gather my thoughts” all the time and for me, I think it’s my mental pause to take inventory of what’s going on and gather my thoughts or calm my thoughts down if I feel the rushing of emotions and I can’t think straight.  Does that ever happen to you?  Where you just need a pause?  

 

“Gathering my thoughts” also looks like a quick 10-jumping jacks in my office to shift the energy and refocus or walking away form my computer and when I feel like I’m not being my best. 

 

So if you ever take a pause or a reset, share with us what you do, how does it work for you, so that we can all learn from one another.     

 

Let’s connect on social at @everydayhappinesswithkatie and join the community on the hashtags #IntentionalMargins and #everydayhappinesswithkatie on Instagram  

 

And if you enjoyed this episode of Everyday Happiness, make sure that you hit the subscribe button wherever you are tuning into today, so that you never miss an episode. 

 

 

 

Until next time, remember kindness is contagious. 

Get Everyday Happiness delivered to your inbox by subscribing at: https://www.katiejefcoat.com/happiness

And, let’s connect on social at @everydayhappinesswithkatie  and join the community on the hashtags #IntentionalMargins and #everydayhappinesswithkatie on Instagram

 

Links:  https://onamission.bio/everydayhappiness/

 

528-Being Present at the Micro Level

528-Being Present at the Micro Level

November 11, 2022

Are you present for the happy little moments in life, like the first bite of a cookie or listening to your kids describe their day? In this episode, we talk about being present on the micro-level. Tune in to learn more! 

 

Transcript:

 

Welcome to Everyday Happiness where we create lasting happiness, in about 2 minutes a day,  through my signature method of Intentional Margins® (creating harmony between your to-dos and your priorities), happiness science, and musings about life. 

 

I'm your host Katie Jefcoat and I’m trying to be more present and in the moment.  It is by far, one of the hardest things for me to do.  It takes everything in me to stay in the moment.  My mind wanders.  I even catch myself eavesdropping to the conversation next to me when I’m sitting at a restaurant.  Oftentimes, I’m thinking of what's next.  Next in the conversation, next in the hour, next in the day.  It’s a struggle.  

 

Being present is so important.  Whether it’s acknowledging and savoring your first bite of a delicious dinner, or listening to the children tell me about their day at school.  

 

I recently read that hedonic adaptation, which is the scientific name for getting what you want, adapting to that and then wanting more can happen on the micro level.  It can be enjoying that first bite of a freshly baked cookie, and then eating 3 cookies and wondering if they were as good as the first bite. You think something will make you happy long term, but the science suggests it won’t and you’ll return to your normal level of happiness - even if it’s something as big as winning the lottery.   

 

But one way to counterbalance this feeling and not feel like you are on, what the social scientists call the hedonic treadmill, is to be present in the moment.  

 

This has got me thinking about my life on a micro level.  How can I check myself, be present and start living more in the moment.  So I’ve done a quick dive into a self-guided experiment, on savoring, meditation for happiness, being present, and of course gratitude.  

 

Over the next little while, I’m going to do check-ins on this micro-podcast (yay for accountability) and I will take you along with me on my exploration to live more presently using the happiness tools and techniques backed by scientific research.  

 

In the meantime, what tools do you use to be more present or mindful in your everyday life? Let’s chat over on social - I’m @everydayhappinesswithkatie   

 

Until next time, remember kindness is contagious. 

Get Everyday Happiness delivered to your inbox by subscribing at: https://www.katiejefcoat.com/happiness

And, let’s connect on social at @everydayhappinesswithkatie  and join the community on the hashtags #IntentionalMargins and #everydayhappinesswithkatie on Instagram

 

Links:  https://onamission.bio/everydayhappiness/

 

 

527-Mindfulness as a Form of Intentional Margins

527-Mindfulness as a Form of Intentional Margins

November 10, 2022

Mindfulness doesn't necessarily mean meditation, it can be whatever you need it to be. Check out how I have utilized mindfulness in my life in this episode! 

 

Transcript:

 

Welcome to Everyday Happiness where we create lasting happiness, in about 2 minutes a day,  through my signature method of Intentional Margins® (creating harmony between your to-dos and your priorities), happiness science, and musings about life. 

 

I'm your host Katie Jefcoat and I’ve been struggling with this concept of mindfulness. 

 

Perhaps it's just semantics that I was getting caught up on, similarly with gratitude and appreciation, but being mindful is not easy for me and I’m not a girl who meditates.  

 

But then I heard an explanation that was less about meditation - the kind where you try to think of nothing and more about being present in the moment.  That’s still hard for me, don’t get me wrong, but I’ve started to change the way I think of mindfulness.  

 

I started to flip the script and think about mindfulness as being present and something I can do all day, instead of a time that was strictly devoted to meditation.  In a way, it was freeing me from the guilt of thinking I needed to meditate. 

 

I learned, through my research, that Mindfulness is simply the art of being completely present in the moment.

 

I looked up mindfulness in the thesaurus to try to better understand and it led me to words like appreciation, present, thoughtfulness, state of consciousness, wholeness.   

 

So I started to look at “mindfulness” as “being present” and that is where my journey has led me so far.  

 

I haven’t gotten to the mindfulness state of pure awareness, beyond mental activity that is the state of being found in the Buddhism origination of mindfulness. 

 

I’m just working on being present in the here and now.  

 

It looks like being in the moment and not on auto-pilot, moving through life without paying full attention to the journey.  I wonder if my less than ideal memory is because I wasn't present in the moment - for years - because I was already moving on to the next thing? 

 

I’m curious, how do you describe mindfulness?  What works for you?  I’d love any tips you’ve got for me. I’m over on social @everydayhappinesswithkatie

Until next time, remember kindness is contagious. 

Get Everyday Happiness delivered to your inbox by subscribing at: https://www.katiejefcoat.com/happiness

And, let’s connect on social at @everydayhappinesswithkatie  and join the community on the hashtags #IntentionalMargins and #everydayhappinesswithkatie on Instagram

 

Links:  https://onamission.bio/everydayhappiness/

526-The Size of the Reward is Inconsequential

526-The Size of the Reward is Inconsequential

November 9, 2022

The size of the reward matters little; it is all about anticipation! Tune in today to learn more about reward systems for improving happiness. 

 

Transcript:

 

Welcome to Everyday Happiness where we create lasting happiness, in about 2 minutes a day,  through my signature method of Intentional Margins® (creating harmony between your to-dos and your priorities), happiness science, and musings about life. 

 

I'm your host Katie Jefcoat, and yesterday we talked about treating ourselves to improve happiness. Essentially, we discussed how rewarding ourselves after working hard on a task was an excellent method of enhancing happiness and satisfaction. We all love getting a pat on the back for a well-done job.

After reading an article from Psychology Today on learning and reward systems, I want to add a side note. In this article, Dr. Robb Rutledge performed an experiment on learning and rewards. In the study, he found that the reward size didn’t matter as much as the learning process.

What this shows us is that creating reward systems for ourselves doesn’t have to be some huge dramatic process. You certainly don’t need a month-long trip to Rome just because you cleaned the bathrooms. You just need a little something that can kick your butt into gear!

Something small, easy, and beneficial to your life can be all the reward you need to feel motivated. Whether it’s a five-minute dance break, a piece of chocolate, a phone call to a friend, or whatever lights your hair on fire, it’s worth it if it motivates you. This got me thinking, what of my favorite self-rewards are easy, cheap, and manageable on a regular basis; here’s what I came up with:

-          A quick trip to my favorite coffee shop

-          A 20-minute walk through the neighborhood

-          A mid-day tv episode of my favorite show

-          A surprise mommy-kiddo date with my kids

So, friends, I rechallenge you to think of one reward you can give yourself today after completing a task that may be daunting. I believe in you, and I know you can get that treat! 

And remember, kindness is contagious, so go out and spread some kindness today. 

Everyday Happiness delivered to your inbox by subscribing at: https://www.katiejefcoat.com/happiness

 

And, let’s connect on social at @everydayhappinesswithkatie  and join the community on the hashtags #IntentionalMargins and #everydayhappinesswithkatie on Instagram

 

Links:  https://onamission.bio/everydayhappiness/

 

Inspired by this article in Psychology Today:  

525-Treating Yourself to Improve Happiness

525-Treating Yourself to Improve Happiness

November 8, 2022

When was the last time you treated yourself? Maybe you think you are unworthy, but I have news for you! Little rewards make us work harder. Tune in to learn more! 

 

Transcript:

 

Welcome to Everyday Happiness where we create lasting happiness, in about 2 minutes a day,  through my signature method of Intentional Margins® (creating harmony between your to-dos and your priorities), happiness science, and musings about life. 

 

I'm your host Katie Jefcoat, and today I read this subtle but powerful quote by Iris Murdoch, an Irish and British novelist and philosopher. She said, "One of the secrets of a happy life is continuous small treats."

As we know, rewarding ourselves for a job well done is crucial to that sense of satisfaction we get after working hard, but often it goes forgotten as we perpetually move on to the next task on the to-do list. Such patterns can lead to us feeling underappreciated, unsatisfied, and unhappy.

Friends, I am here to remind you that celebrating wins, even little wins, is vital to keeping up your happiness. Now, how can we do this?

Let’s talk levels, starting with small wins. Say you accomplished all of the tasks on your to-do list; you could treat yourself to a walk outside. Or, say you managed to clean all the bathrooms, you could reward yourself with an episode of your favorite show. Or perhaps you managed to score a new client; you could take yourself and a friend to coffee!

Now, let’s think bigger! Say you met your business goal for the quarter; you could reward yourself with a trip to Mexico for a week. Or maybe if you managed to lose 30 pounds, you could treat yourself to a little shopping spree.

Treats can be anything you find satisfying as long as they aren’t counterproductive to your goal. For example, rewarding yourself with a cookie may not be the best plan if you are on a mission to lose weight!

Whatever you are trying to achieve, setting an anticipated reward at the end will make you work harder, feel greater dedication, and be happier with the end result. So, friends, I encourage you to pick out a task or goal today and then supply a reward to go along with it. Start small with something you can accomplish today or this week! And make sure to let me know in the comments or tag in on Insta with how it went.

Until next time, remember kindness is contagious. Sometimes spreading a little kindness glitter can be a reward in itself. 

Get Everyday Happiness delivered to your inbox by subscribing at: https://www.katiejefcoat.com/happiness

And, let’s connect on social at @everydayhappinesswithkatie  and join the community on the hashtags #IntentionalMargins and #everydayhappinesswithkatie on Instagram

 

Links:  https://onamission.bio/everydayhappiness/

524-The Science of Cuteness Pt. 2

524-The Science of Cuteness Pt. 2

November 7, 2022

Did you know there is a cuteness science? It’s true! Cuteness plays a significant role in our lives, can trigger protective responses, and can even bring us happiness.

 

Transcript:

 

Welcome to Everyday Happiness where we create lasting happiness, in about 2 minutes a day,  through my signature method of Intentional Margins® (creating harmony between your to-dos and your priorities), happiness science, and musings about life. 

 

I'm your host Katie Jefcoat, and yesterday we started down the road of the science of cuteness.  And I promised that today I would share how we can get it. 

 

So, where can we get this cuteness? Of course, exposure to babies and young animals is a powerful hit, but we don’t always have such access. Therefore, we must include inanimate objects, like the Japanese have done. A few examples of characters would be Hello Kitty, Care Bears, Pusheen, Animal Crossing, and even some Pokémon. However, it can be much more straightforward, like rainbows, butteries, and flowers. And, there are other ways to incorporate cuteness into your life. Psychology Today recommends the following:

 

  1. Add cuteness to your day, such as cute images or items in your space.
  2. Personify your belongings with a “cuteness” mentality to make you take better care of them.
  3. Picture people as what they could have looked like as children to stave off anger.
  4. Utilize cuteness in psychology.

 

I’m going to touch a bit more on this one. Sometimes when people are cute, people don’t take them seriously. For example, teenage girls who look much younger than their years suggest can often have trouble getting their parents or other adults to view their opinions as mature since they are still perceived as cute. A way to neutralize this is to lower your cute volume; this can be done by pitching your voice lower or making yourself seem larger. This can happen in various situations, such as husbands who view their wives as cute when they get angry or bosses who don’t take their workers seriously due to their youthful appearance.

 

Now, I don’t want to get off topic, so I will conclude with this. Cuteness is usually a good thing, and a little drop can lighten the heart and improve your happiness. So, I encourage you to take a moment today to send a cute animal picture to a loved one to trigger that aww response and brighten their day! And remember, kindness is contagious!

 

Get Everyday Happiness delivered to your inbox by subscribing at: https://www.katiejefcoat.com/happiness

 

And, let’s connect on social at @everydayhappinesswithkatie  and join the community on the hashtags #IntentionalMargins and #everydayhappinesswithkatie on Instagram

 

Links:  https://onamission.bio/everydayhappiness/

 

Inspired by this article in Psychology Today:

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