Creating happiness is easy when you engage in activities you enjoy that also challenge your skills. When these activities also contribute to something greater than yourself or do good for someone else, you can increase your happiness even more. You can enjoy yourself, create feelings of virtue and accomplishment, and create happy memories all at once this is the message which came out of the ‘Be happy and Make Seychelles Happy ‘ conference organized by the National Council for Children ON Tuesday 22nd May.
The goal of the Make Seychelles Happy Campaign is to promote the NCC’s living values programme and is a follow up on the ‘Say Hello’ and Kindness Campaign which was launched earlier. It aims to improve the well-being atmosphere in the community so that children can role model the examples of adults and the campaign will also raise awareness of essential values and character to live happy lives. The campaign is also promoting creativity and responsibility at all levels and aims to make a significant contribution to implementing savoir vivre and savoir faire through work, art, music , food sports and day to day appreciation and respect of nature. .
During the opening ceremony NCC made a video presentation which recognized people living with positive ,healthy and happy life styles. Other presentations were more or less advocacy-oriented and designed to further sensitize participants to the importance of living effective, peaceful, healthy , relaxing humourous , spiritual and productive lifestyles.
Participants were encouraged to choose something to focus on. Such as; getting more exercise, connecting with nature, taking a course they were interested in or making regular time to connect with people they loved ..
Happiness is only ever one thought away at most said Mrs Radicka Kidao in her keynote address
One fresh perception, one new belief, one innovative thought, one powerful decision, one moment of surrender, one instant complete openness, is all it takes to experience a world of difference.
Research that examined the relationship between income and happiness has found out that increased income has a very small correlation with happiness for most people . she said. THE EXCEPTION IS FOR PEOPLE WHO LIVE IN CONDITIONS OF POVERTY, IN WHICH MONEY CAN HELP PROVIDE BASIC NECCESSITIES LIKE FOOD, SHELTER , SAFETY ETC….
ONCE PEOPLE REACH A CERTAIN LEVEL WHERE THEIR BASIC NEEDS ARE MET IN A SUSTAINED WAY, additional income tends to have little effect on happiness
Radicka then gave several ideas for several activities that people can do to cultivate happiness –she stressed that many of these activities shared the same characteristics.
“ You'll almost certainly have heard the idea that helping others is beneficial to the self, and will make you happy”, she said .
But isn't helping others for no tangible personal benefit too much like self-sacrifice one might ask?
“Actually, research suggests there's a very good selfish reason to help others - it really does seem to make us happier.”. she reassured the participants.
“Laughter and spirituality are also essential means to achieve happiness”, she added. . and you can also benefit from being present and focused in the moment”, she told the participants.
–“life is what happens when we are busy doing something –appreciating pleasant moments of the day - through activities like meditation walk in nature –spending time with children and animals”.
Fulfilment through activities that are both significantly and enjoyable –engaging passion and interests, this was also touched upon by Ferial Jankjer and Mike Auguste in the “living happily” video
Flow- connection between person and act creativity being in the zone be it in sports, art and music –these topics were elaborated upon by Joe Samy and Giovanna Rousseau
Transcendence connection with something greater was something that particularly tickled the audience . James SABADIN – Juliette –Sicobo- Azais Serge Robert and most of the other presenters spoke lengthily upon the importance of being spiritually connected with a force bigger than self .
Participants got a better understanding of the part that GRATITUDE plays in experiencing happiness . Research findings had revealed that people who express gratitude score higher on the happiness barometer and the effects last for weeks .
Participants also learned that tasty food , laughter and the strong social networks also impact positively on happiness and are essential for being happy and that happiness is always a thought away in being happy and making Seychelles happy