2013. I came into 2013 a pessimist. I am never a pessimist. I knew 13 was an unlucky number for some but it never occurred to me that there might be an actual phobia against the number 13? Triskaidekaphobia- Fear of the Number 13. Who knew?
I always look at a New Year as a new opportunity. Last January I declared it to be my year and I had so many great things happen. Attracted talented people to my team, amazing health, was runner up for 5 awards and on the cover of two magazine covers. Wow! What a year. I am convinced it was down to my positive attitude. I did some visualization about that and poof! But I have had a hard time shaking 13 into a shape I feel great about.
I searched the Internet for some good news. Something to sink my teeth into and get happy about. ‘Happiness fuels success, not the other way around’. When we are positive; our brains become more engaged, creative, motivated, energetic, resilient, and productive at work. This isn’t just an empty mantra. ‘This discovery has been repeatedly borne out by rigorous research in Psychology and neuroscience, management studies and the bottom lines of organisations around the globe’. (a quote by Shawn Achor on the Power of Positive Thinking). Check out his TED talk, amazing! I met him recently in New Orleans at a conference. He suggested we practice these exercises everyday to create lasting positive change.
- 3 Gratitudes – List 3 new things everyday you are grateful for. By the end of a 21 day period the brain retains a pattern of scanning for the positive before the negative.
- Journaling – Journal everyday about one positive experience in the last 24 hours. This allows you to relive it.
- Exercise – Teaches the brain that behaviour matters.
- Meditation – Allows the brain to get over the cultural norm of doing too many things at once.
- Random Acts of Kindness – Praising or thanking someone in their social support network.
The deeper I went the more optimistic I became. I also discovered that in Chinese numerology 13 means ‘vibrant or assured growth’. I am smiling now! And in the course of doing my gratitude’s, I realized that as I am alive and well and the world did not end on 12/21/12 as Mayan calendar predicted, we all now have a new lease. We get a second chance to do great things.
So make the most of your opportunities and consider yourself lucky and watch your true happiness and luck grow.