How to Arrive at Happiness Daily

Do you ever wake up and roll out of bed and feel like your mood is off?

Most of us get up and go to work and feeling this type of way. This state of mind, long term, can contribute to lack of motivation, being curt with our colleagues, daydreaming, lack of productivity, falling into depression, feeling irritable, not being appreciative to your significant other, or worse… There is bona fide evidence indicating that the negative moods negatively impact your health and that the positive effect does the opposite.

Some of us are able to quickly reclaim the ability to fix our mood and then we are in cruise control for the optimal 3-star day. But if you follow the steps outlined below, you’ll be ready to take on the world any day, smiling, productive, and feeling like you’re EXCITED for all that life has to bring.

When you start your day with a STAR assessment from, a whole number, 1 to 5, you can be cognizant of your state of emotion.

Star rating

My recommendation? You must assess your day at four points:

Take a breath prior and make the assessment

1st –  Upon Waking

2nd – Midday (Just before or after lunch)

3rd – End of the work day

4th – Just before going to bed

This rating system at any point in the day should be a reflection of your mood and your general perception of how the day has progressed.  Some factors that might contribute towards a rating shift might be: Getting some awesome accolade, being uber productive, following your diet, rocking a speech, feeling alive, being selfless, dancing in the car, hitting a hole in one, smiling frequently, doing a headstand, meeting a genuine soul, avoidance of crazy drivers, a great kiss from your significant other, getting the buy-in you’ve been seeking on that project, the sun coming out, a promotion, someone holding the door, etc.

According to a 2010 research study, ‘Positive affect and psychobiological processes’, by Samantha Dockray and Andrew Steptoe, “There is accumulating evidence that feelings of positive affect confer benefits to the individual beyond the intrinsic value of being happier… Positive affect has been associated with favourable health outcomes, and it is likely that several biological processes mediate the effects of positive mood on physical health.”

This task is simple! You identify your rating and ask yourself what it would take to get you to the next level. The recurring and daily objective is to reach for a (4) every day and maintain it. Put it on a whiteboard, save it in your phone, or keep a journal! Once you’ve done this for one week; you invite your colleagues (and family) to the concept by asking them to evaluate whether they “are having a 5-star day”? If you have a significant other or children, get them in the habit of doing this also. The goal here is recognizing that we all have 2-star, but we should all collectively be in a habit of reaching for that 4-star day, every day.

Regardless of where you work  – Government, IT, or elsewhere — you should be striving for that (4) star day. When you happen to stumble near those energy vampires (i.e. people whose negative energy will suck the LIFE from you), complainers, overtly cynical, or Debbie downers — avoid them like the plague.

Life is too short for the constant 1 and 2-star days.  Surround yourself with 4-STAR folks, stay healthy, laugh as much as you can, and do your best!

This process works, it’s contagious, and I assure you – you will have better days. You may slip up, however you have the power to elicit the elation you want!


Jessica Sellers-Duggan is part of the GovLoop Featured Blogger program, where we feature blog posts by government voices from all across the country (and world!). To see more Featured Blogger posts, click here.

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