happy when you go

Happy When You Go?

Happy When You Go: My Journey From Gloomy to Uplifting Presences

I used to be obsessed with getting ahead in life. I thought money, status, and accomplishments were the keys to happiness. But I noticed some people brighten any room they enter with their laughter and charm. Others unfortunately cast gloom through complaining or criticism. How could I cultivate a positive presence that makes people grin when I join them? That’s when I discovered the secrets to being a true happiness booster lie within.

an honest self-assessment happiness
I took an honest look at myself and had to admit that I didn’t make others happy.

Learning What Truly Matters

I worked long hours, volunteered for extra projects, and carefully managed my image at the office. I moved up quickly and earned a high salary, but something was still missing.

One day, I read this quote:

Some cause happiness wherever they go; others whenever they go.” — Oscar Wilde.

At first, I laughed and thought, “How True,” but then I thought back to Deepak Chopra‘s words in the classes I took with him. “We see in others that which we deny in ourselves.” 

It gave me pause. I realized that while I had focused on professional achievements, I had neglected the impact I had on those around me. Did I cause happiness wherever I went? Or did I only cause happiness when I exited people’s lives?

An Honest Self-Assessment

I took an honest look at myself and had to admit that I didn’t make others happy. I was impatient, self-focused, focused on business results, and perhaps indifferent to how my actions affected people. 

I just wanted the job done the way I wanted it done. I succeeded in achieving business results. But I had to ask myself the hard question: are you happy? And, more importantly, am I bringing joy and happiness to others?

Did I have it backward? As Shawn Achor uncovered in his research on the “Happiness Advantage,” happiness comes before success – not the other way around. And just as the Oscar Wilde quote suggests, making others happy creates positive ripples that uplift every aspect of life.

They were Happy When I Go

After reflecting candidly, I saw I wasn’t causing happiness due to my impatience and self-focus. This hard truth aligned with what Achor found – discontent and negativity fuel a cycle that makes things worse, while shared happiness multiplies in the opposite direction. 

Sadly, I realized that, as Oscar Wilde suggested, people were probably happier when I was not around. This was a tough realization. I knew which ripple effect I now wanted to create.

Be the Stone That Skips and Creates Ripples. Not the One that Sinks

While success had temporary rewards, I saw that bringing joy to others created ongoing positive ripples. I could keep chasing promotions and accolades for myself. Or I could shift my priorities to lifting the people in my everyday life, creating happiness wherever I went.

Sharing the Happiness I Want to See

I started small by being present with my family and asking sincere questions about their days. Instead of talking about my accomplishments, I showed interest in their pursuits, challenges, and goals. 

All People Matter

This brought us closer and opened meaningful conversations. I realized that it didn’t take grand gestures – just showing people they matter can brighten their day.

As I invested more fully in my relationships, I found simple generosities went a long way, just as Achor notes: “Happiness is contagious. Your brain experiences a dopamine rush when you make others happy.” I realized lasting happiness starts small – a moment of empathy here, a word of encouragement there.

Care About Your Colleagues

At work, I made an effort to engage more with colleagues to understand what they care about. I offered support when I could and went out of my way to give public praise when someone did excellent work. 

These actions cost me nothing but multiplied the happiness around me. My interactions became less transactional and more authentic. I felt my impatience and indifference fade as my compassion grew.

Positive Ripple Effects

Over time, I saw ripple effects from spreading more happiness. These new micro-behaviors catalyzed real change in my world. This reflects Achor’s insights that “The Happiness Advantage” compounds exponentially when seeded effectively. 

Better Together

My family life felt richer and full of laughter. My work relationships evolved into collaborations among caring friends. My career didn’t suffer either. By lifting up my team, we achieved far greater results together. I found fulfillment in our shared success.

Happy to See You

As Mr. Wilde suggested, I had become someone who causes happiness wherever I go instead of only when I go. Focusing less on myself and more on others filled my days with meaning. 

Boomerang of Brightness

By brightening my little corner, I saw the motivational, performance, and satisfaction boosts align perfectly. The happiness I share comes back to me multiplied. 

I’ve learned that this positive energy is unlimited – I need to give it away to keep it flowing.

You Light Up My Life

So, I march onward with this new life lesson: Be the spark that lights up the people around you. Only then do you know true happiness.

My Wish for You

I hope that you will be a person who spreads joy, happiness, and understanding.

Happy When You Go: Do you want to be the person people are happy to see and welcome? Or are you the person people are glad have left the building?  

The answer may lie in how you see others