Happy Days…?


I was talking with a client who was a bit low on spirits and energy. I asked him a question:

“Tell me all the things that you are doing both personally and professional that make you happy?”

Client: ………. Silence, long silence ( I was getting worried) followed by “Not much at all really”

Me in response: “Then you don’t deserve to be happy.”

A bit harsh perhaps, but true. If you don’t do things that lift your spirits and make you happy why on earth would you expect to feel happy?

If you are not very happy it shows. Maybe people around you don’t exactly see that you are a miserable bugger, but your dissatisfaction will seep out of your pores and they’ll pick it up.

Not brilliant… if you want to be a role model of someone who takes care of themselves, has a clear picture of who they are and what they need to be to be happy. Yer, whatever the circumstances or vehicle, bottom line is people want to be happy.

Me, I really do want to spend all my time with people who have vitality, energy, joy and take their work but not themselves seriously. Why wouldn’t you?

I remain strongly committed to talking about happiness (sometimes in the face of corporate ridicule). Why? Because I believe happiness is our authentic nature, and for that reason happiness brings out the best in us, both individually and collectively.

So my friend the client writes down a list of all the things that make him feel happy and he takes action to make some, if not all, of them alive again. Because it takes effort to be happy as in any other worthwhile venture. I have my list too and we are having a bit of bloke competitive thing to see who can make the most progress before Xmas.

PS Your list likely has two columns. Happiness Producing & Happiness Draining. It’s tough to produce if its going straight down the drain. Eliminating drains is equally as important.

PPS Correct. I always wanted to be Fonzie…

Paul Fox

Paul Fox has been active as a Construction Industry Performance Coach for the last 20 years and remains at the forefront of Collaborative Working and High Performance Team Behaviours. He disrupts the status quo of individuals, project and senior teams who want exponentially more output with much less struggle.


  1. talane miedaner Says: October 24, 2011 at 2:09 pm

    Can’t wait to see your own list! And hey, all this rain is getting me down!

  2. My Happy List is very long…but I thought I’d share #1

    In August 2008 our eldest son Phil got engaged to Katie.
    In late October 2008 Katie had a massive stroke and was in hospital until May 2009. Phil went in every day after school (he’s a teacher).
    Phil & Katie got married on 24th October 2009. She walked down the aisle – the furthest she had walked since the stroke. Many tears (of joy) all round and Katie was obviously very happy.
    Since May 2009 Katie’s speech has started to return (and she understands everything and is quick to let us know her opinion even if it’s with her eyes!). They have a home in Romsey and she is walking up and down stairs and going to the gym on the bus, despite having no active use of her right arm or leg.
    On 31st October 2011 Katie is due to give birth – just three years after the stroke.
    Is she happy? Not half – she looks radiant and they are both enjoying their new challenges (and there are going to be quite a few…).
    Are we happy? You bet.

    • Hi Mike,
      What a lovely story and thanks for sharing it. I know it sounds corny sometimes but ‘having perspective’ really does free us up to invest enegy on the important things and work.
      My wife starts everyday with 3 questions before she gets down to work.
      What is important about today?
      What must happen today above all else?
      What is important about the future?

      She is a very content lady because of that I’m sure.