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Key Factors for Happiness

Arthur C. Brooks and Oprah Winfrey have written a thought-provoking book together. It’s called Build the Life You Want: The Art and Science of Getting Happier.

Yep. There are other books on how to get happy. Why is this one different?

One of the many things I enjoy about this content is that Brooks and Winfrey share that happiness isn’t a feeling, it’s a direction. They invite us to consider getting happier as a process we can activate each day. That changes the game.

They also invoke the power of three and discuss what research has determined as the three powerful factors that contribute to happiness:




It’s really cool to consider getting happier in this way.

AM I HAPPIER TODAY THAN I WAS YESTERDAY? Mr. Shakespeare, that is the question, now!

This work resonates with me very deeply. If it resonates with you, as well, I think we have organically come to these conclusions.

As a Creativity Coach, I enjoy assisting high performers to bring the best of them to their daily interactions. In this post, I’ll be sharing my response to each of the factors stated above, and demonstrate how each of these elements combine to create a Life Designed to THRIVE!


In general terms, are you satisfied with your performance? This means examining how you show up in both the personal and professional aspects of your life.

Do you consider yourself a powerful person? If there are some gaps in your assessment…if there are some areas that require some work…are you willing to begin today?

Willingness is the most powerful force in the Cosmos. Without it, you will not design a life that allows you to thrive.

If you woke up today on this side of the grass, it’s a beautiful day, indeed! Today is the only day that is guaranteed.

Always Lead With Your Power Moves!

A very potent way of activating your personal potential is by being prepared to address those gaps with excellence as your prime directive.

Begin each day by asking yourself these questions:

What do I need to say OKAY, I”LL DO IT too today?

What barriers do I need to break to achieve this objective?

Who can I reach out to, collaborate with, congratulate, and celebrate today?

Satisfaction means that at the end of the day, you have pride in yourself and in your accomplishments, enough to declare, job well done!

You’ve just made another contribution to a Life Designed to THRIVE!


Simplicity + Activity = Life on Purpose

The way we think about purpose can sometimes be as elusive as a sasquatch…is it real? Or is it folklore? Something we all want but can never achieve?

After many years of struggling with this idea, I realized that I was chasing an ideal – something so far beyond lil ole me that it often sucked the life right out of my days. But then I thought…what could be the simplest, most basic way of thinking about my purpose here on earth?

There’s so much beauty in sacred simplicity…extracting all of the extras that seem to contribute to personal happiness but, in reality, only add to the ballast we drag around. I decided to de-engineer this ideal and find its most basic components.

  1. Select a goal.
  2. Make a plan.
  3. Take action.

The choice to walk creates the path ahead. A life on purpose is composed of a series of intentional, deliberate steps. Your purpose is revealed through action, not thought.

Once you begin, you find your way, not before.

Can it be this simple, this minimal, to create a Life Designed to THRIVE?


What does happiness mean to you? This is the question of the day. Perhaps, it should be the question of every day?

Would you be okay with finding out that you were mistaken about what happiness means?

Brooks teaches a class on happiness at Harvard and states that students flock to his class. His interviews and podcasts get millions of views. Everyone wants to understand more about the sasquatch…the elusive thing called happiness.

Have you been living your life in the shallows? There’s a part of you that is meant for THE DEEP…

I use a process I developed called Contemplative Writing (CW) to identify the meaning behind my life and recommend it to clients. CW differs from Journaling or diary writing because it invites you to leave your inner critic and the rules of your life at the door and enter your Sanctuary…a sacred space where anything and everything can be examined. There are no taboos, anathemas, or condemnations in this space.

Here you can think about whatever you like and write what you like. This writing is exclusively for you and allows you to work through your thoughts in a way that most people wouldn’t do if they were speaking to anyone else, except for, perhaps, a psychologist.

The only ticket to admission into this space is that you must agree to lead with honor and compassion. You must agree to not condemn any thought you entertain, or this won’t work. No rules must apply here.

In your Sanctuary you are free to be as free as your fear will allow you to be. 

I always begin by addressing my fear, with honor and compassion, as it is the biggest barrier to self-exploration.

In this space, you can explore this thought, consider its origins, its importance, and why it works for you, as well as why it may not work that well at this point in your life.

In this sacred Contemplative Writing space, you cannot fail.

This is where I complete my Meaning exercise:

It works like this: Think of a topic, something that triggers a reaction…or evokes an opinion…and then explore what you think about it.

I often use a dictionary to discover the exact meanings of the words that I am using as I write. This process has been super enlightening, as I often realized that I have not been using those words in the correct context. In fact, I have been adding my spin on what the word means…based on my personal experience. Through this CW process, I’ve realized how often I enjoy skewing a term to suit my particular purpose.

I’ve learned that many times, I believe that my opinion is THE TRUTH when it is simply my truth. I often find that there is a synonym, or alternate meaning, for that word or term that makes more sense to me. I would never have learned this if I had not entered into a space where being mistaken was considered a fail.

A vital component of creating a Life Designed to THRIVE! is being clear about what you mean when you speak, understanding your purpose for doing the things you do, and celebrating the satisfaction that you derive from your projects and interactions.

What if getting happier is simply this?

At the end of each day being able to say…WELL DONE!

Key Factors For Happiness &Raquo; Great Job Emoji Background Png


Originally Published on

Paula D. Tozer is the author of three books - Saving Your Own Life: Learning to Live Like You Are Dying; An Elegant Mind's Handbook, and Enchanting Treve, a Novel. She is also an actor, singer/songwriter, Creativity Coach, competitive speaker, and leader with Toastmasters, as well as an avid cyclist, hiker, gym rat, and critter lover. The vast majority of her accomplishments have been achieved after the age of 50, demonstrating that It is never too late to be what you truly could have been...

Paula believes that living fiercely at any age is the way to optimize our time on this side of the grass. She has taken up the mission to inspire and motivate her contemporaries with what she has found that has allowed her to age with elegance, vitality, and most of all, good humor!

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