Shifting Our Mindset Towards Positive 

 December 20, 2016

Workplace Outcomes Improve When Employee Happiness Increases

I’m driven to support teachers at a time when they are most in need of it. I do this by working as an education consultant—because I was and AM a teacher. I’m in the trenches with our teachers, because even when I left the classroom to become an administrator, I never wanted to lose the pulse of what it’s like inside the walls of our classrooms.

I know all too well the stresses and challenges this demanding profession afflicts on our teachers, and I feel and hear their despair. As an educational consultant (albeit, not your typical education consultant), I coach on-site with schools and teachers, but  I also host professional development workshops throughout the country, inviting teachers from a variety of schools to a central location to learn about a specific topic that can better support their teaching practice. But in addition to providing instructional practices, I also sprinkle happiness coaching into my trainings.

You see, I’m also a happiness coach and motivational speaker. Basically, I work with schools and other businesses to create better well-being within the workplace and in people’s personal lives. I mean, who doesn’t want to become the happiest person they know? We all want that spark of light within us to shine brightly. We all want a zest for life, to feel excited about the work we do, to believe that our work matters, to get the most out of life, and to contribute to our world in more meaningful ways.

Arianna Huffington says,

“Our relentless pursuit of the two traditional metrics of success — money and power — has led to an epidemic of burnout and stress-related illnesses, and an erosion in the quality of our relationships, family life, and, ironically, our careers. In being connected to the world 24/7, we’re losing our connection to what truly matters.”

As someone who has felt powerless in my own life at times, as well as in my career as an educator, I’m all too familiar with that helpless feeling. Teachers, in general, are struggling right now. Educators feel they are working in a time of chaos. They are overworked, overwhelmed, and overstressed. They’ve lost a lot of their joy, and what most frightens me is the toll it’s taking on them and how it’s affecting their personal lives.

But I believe that sometimes it’s out of chaos that solutions cry out. Teachers need to be reminded of their “why” and need tools to help them navigate the changes in this profession. And they need to learn how NOT to let the stresses of the job influence their personal lives as much. I’m determined to help teachers reclaim their passion for teaching again, but more than anything, I want them to reclaim their lives even outside of the classroom. I want to empower them because they are the ones who step in our classrooms 180 days a year and have great influence on our children. What they do matters greatly and the fact that they feel called to teach…well, this is a truly a service of the heart.

Happiness leads to success and contributes to higher productivity levels in the workplace and in our personal lives. I don’t believe this implies being blind to the negatives in our environment; it’s about the belief that we have the power to do something about it. It’s about hope. In other words, as Shawn Achor says, “It’s the lens through which our brain views the world that shapes our reality and not the reverse.”

According to Shawn Achor, “what the science of happiness has found is that if we can change that lens, not only can we increase personal happiness, we can also affect positive change in education and business outcomes”. This is exactly what I feel called to do for educators, employees, businesses, and just the general population. Sometimes, we all feel a little lost in this crazy world, so it’s important that we reconnect with ourselves again.

So, to cut to the chase…I’m creating my first ever happiness retreat next year. It’s going to be a two-day retreat where I discuss how to shift our brains to positive, how to increase our happiness levels by up to 40%, and how to implement creativity and play in the workplace and in our personal lives. It’s for educators, businesses, everyone—because we know when happiness increases, productivity does too.

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