The focus of Act Happy Week is to educate the public about purposeful actions you can take to create chemical shifts in your body and new neural pathways in your brain to support more frequent experiences of what we call Positive Emotions. When you “Act Happy” you train your mind/body/heart to find Happiness, Calm, and Resilience when you choose to visit them!
This is Day 5 (416 words of content, Reading time ~1.66 minutes)
I. DAY 5: SELF-EXPRESSION
“We define self-expression as expressing one’s thoughts and feelings, and these expressions can be accomplished through words, choices, or actions.” (Kim & Ko, 2007). This is an intuitive definition—self-expression is, at its core, the action of expressing yourself, and it can take a wide variety of forms.
Be the Story You Want to Tell
When I started my freelance business many years ago, I scheduled a meeting with dozens of people in my network who were already succeeding in a small business. My goal was to interview them all and capture ideas to help me succeed in my own business.
In exchange for free coffee, they were eager to share both their mistakes and their learnings. It was my first big experience of “Paying it Forward,” as most of them when I asked how I could return the favor, said, “do this for the people who call you in the future.” (I still say Yes!)
A key theme I took from that time was this: No one wants to do business with a complainer. As one person explained, “You will attract the same energy you share. So no matter what is happening in the background, when someone asks how you’re doing, say, ‘I’m fabulous! Thanks for asking!'”
That was 25 years ago. During my early years, and at times when cash flow was a concern, my reality was, “I’m stressed and my rent is due and I’m not sure I can cover my kid’s tuition bill and I haven’t slept well in a month and AAAHHHHHHHH!”
But what I SAID, every time, was, “I’m Fabulous! Thanks for asking! What’s up with you?” and from there every conversation buzzed with positive energy. That became part of my brand, and soon I was attracting clients who were drawn to my positivity. AND it became easier, every day, to live into the “story” I was telling.
I will always be grateful to those colleagues who encouraged me to tell a positive story because one day I woke up and realized it was true!
I “acted” my way into feeling fabulous, every day, despite my stressors. Fabulous, generous, and energetic, became my real, true, authentic self.
What’s YOUR Story?
Sometimes self-expression is who you ARE now, and sometimes it is whom you want to BECOME. Either way, the story you tell – to yourself and others – can form the person you are.