Monday, 23 February 2015

Keep your attention to be happy

Being happy should be at the centre of all we do both personally and in work. If we are happy it shows. Studies have shown people can tell when you are faking it. Some days it comes easy, other days it doesn’t and we could all use some helpful strategies to give us the extra push on those harder days.

Maureen Gaffney in her book ‘Flourishing’ describes a ‘psychological currency of the day’. We all only have so much attention. If you are spending a lot of time making difficult decisions that can be very taxing and use up a lot of your ‘psychological currency’ you can become burnt out. This is particularly true in our personal life when we have big decisions to make. If you want your employees to be at the top of their game, you want them to be experts at what they do. Gaffney describes three forms of attention. Alerting Attention keeps us mentally open to take in around us, Orienting Attention facilitates us to know what to direct our attention to and executive attention is where we plan, make decisions and get things done. When all three are in alignment we are at the top of our game. If we are mentally burnt out they won’t be.

Concentration, making decisions, using self-control all deplete our energy resources. Take a look at your day and see if you are overburdened in these areas. We all need elements of our work to be on automatic pilot where it takes little conscious effort for us to operate.