The one thing you can do to be happier and more successful


Focused, achievers strike me as being amongst the happiest people I meet as I observe people (including the learning and development community).

Why is this? And how can we all attain greater happiness and success?

It strikes me that being consistently focused on what you can influence, the areas of personal and work life where you can change, develop or make a positive difference is satisfying and profitable.

Change, growth, learning and development are things that yield great joy. I know this because my young children demonstrate this every day as they grow. So do learners I work with.

Young children – such as my daughter who isn’t yet fully talking and is trying to master so many new things – reveal how frustrating it can be to battle with things they can’t succeed at. So, (for now) she fails.

Screams results! Spending time struggling to change things that you cannot achieve or influence is a recipe for disappointment.

On the other hand, freeing yourself of the worry of changing what you cannot influence improves your mood, keeps you in the ‘can do mindset’ and leaves time to sweat about the stuff you can and will influence.

Plus it gives you so much time and energy ‘back’!

Time and energy that you can use to take action: because action is power.

So, this one realisation: ‘focus on what you can influence’ begs three questions:

1. What things are you going to cease to worry about?

2. How much time and energy will this save you?

3. What productive actions will you now take towards your goals?