Wellbeing

How To Be Happy: Founder Of The Authentic Life Company Shares His Secrets

Most of us want the same thing in life - to be happy. But sometimes, when you're working long hours, understanding what your dream even is can seem impossible.

But one organisation is trying to make happiness a little bit easier to comprehend, then achieve.

The Authentic Life Company provides life coaching, helping people to identify what will make them truly happy before suggesting the steps they can take in order to move towards their goal.

Speaking to HuffPost UK Lifestyle, founder of the company Robert Hutchinson said: "I think the idea of not understanding who we are is quite a universal problem.

"A lot of people could really help themselves by taking time out to look at how they work and what’s important to them."

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The Authentic Life Company was formed after Robert underwent a process of re-evaluating his own happiness and wellbeing.

After years of working in television for major stations like the BBC, Channel 4 and The Discovery Channel, Robert began to feel dissatisfied with his job.

"I was director of media planning, looking at the strategy of on-air communications," he explains.

"Working hours were a good eight or nine hours per day plus I had a one hour commute to work, so I didn't have a lot of time for myself."

As Robert approached his forties, he began to find the job "unfulfilling" and knew it was time for a change.

"I wanted to work for myself and I was looking at the next 10 and 20 years and considering how I wanted my life to be structured. I wanted to focus on something I was really interested in and passionate about," he says.

Robert believes it wasn't just his mind telling him it was time to leave the entertainment industry, but his body too.

"Sometimes I’d be sitting at my desk and it would feel like I was suffocating or drowning. I just really felt very visceral need to get out of there," he says.

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After taking three months off to re-connect with himself, Robert founded The Authentic Life Company to help others make the transition into happiness.

"I had been coached previously myself and had a great experience, so I knew how powerful it could be," he says.

According to Robert, most of our problems stem from us not understanding who we are or what we really want.

"People just don’t time to take stock of who they really are, to consider changes in their personality and their circumstances.

"As you get into your 30s, 40s, even 50s, life has changed a lot, but you don’t really get chance to step back and think about what your life currently is and what you actually want it to be like," he says.

This idea of not being "real" or "genuine" with ourselves is what inspired the name of The Authentic Life Company.

Robert tries to help people re-discover a more "authentic" way of living by stripping things back to their true desires.

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"I start by really bringing everything into the client's consciousness, getting them to think about how they tick and what's important to them.

"Once they've got a clear picture of themselves and how they want things to be, suddenly a lot of the confusion that clients come to me with goes away," he says.

Robert works with clients to create a plan that enables a "managed transition" into a new life. This limits the risk of a client reaching breaking point and losing their job (perhaps due to stress) before they are able to financially cope.

So what advice does Robert give for anyone feeling dissatisfied with their life?

"Firstly, listen to that voice in your head – if the voice is saying change, then take it very seriously and start to make plans towards the change as soon as you possibly can.

"The second step is to notice when you are being genuine – if we’re specifically talking about work, notice those times that feel right and feel good and notice those times that feel bad, awkward and inauthentic. When I used to network it would feel awkward and staged – it wouldn’t feel real.

"Then, talk abut how you feel with friends, family and colleagues and get some professional advice yourself," he suggests.

Robert is certainly a man who practices what he preaches - since leaving the world of television, Robert says he feels more "like himself" than he has in years.

"It’s a different league of happiness to what I was feeling before. I don’t have that feeling on a Sunday evening of dread and not looking forward to the week coming up," he says.

"I’m now defining success beyond power and money and status – what’s now important to me is working in a field that I’m passionate about.

"I go on holiday but I don’t feel that need to – I go on the holiday, enjoy the holiday but also look forward to coming back and continuing the work I love."

Click SOURCE below for the original article on The Huffington Post

Mental Wellbeing Is The Next Human Frontier

Last week was a gruelling news week in which the consequences of poor mental health were splashed across TV screens and newspaper headlines around the world. The week began with the massacre of 49 LGBT Americans in the Pulse gay nightclub in Orlando and here in the UK the week ended with the brutal murder of a popular Member of the UK parliament Jo Cox on the street of a small Yorkshire town.

The narrative in Orlando is undoubtedly complex as there appear to be numerous contributory factors including the lack of effective gun control in the United States, religious extremism, homophobia (probably external and internalised) and online radicalisation, as well as evidence of mental instability. The murder of Jo Cox may also turn out to be directly related to the issue of mental health if early reports prove correct that the suspect has a history of mental health problems.

Both cases are extreme examples of the consequences of poor mental health and wellbeing, however mental health problems are common in modern society. Major depression is thought to be the second leading cause of disability worldwide and in the UK it is estimated that 1 in 4 people will experience a mental health problem in any given year. The issue extends even further beyond clinically defined mental health problems to poor general mental wellbeing which it could be argued is endemic.

In recent decades we humans have been incredibly clever at inventing powerful technologies to help us connect, communicate and do things. We can access almost the entirety of all human knowledge ever created in a quick Google search. We can instant message anyone almost anywhere in the world and we can even shoot an HD video using our mobile phone then immediately edit it on the same device. In the workplace, the advent of email and powerful software packages facilitate the generation and sharing of vast amounts of data and information.

We think nothing of this technological wizardry, but we seem to brush over the negative impact of the technologies we have created on mental wellbeing. Where information overload leads to feelings of overwhelm how do we manage that? Where data sharing becomes a frustrating orgy of ineffective collaboration what do we do? And where the constant barrage of notifications, IMs, texts, messages and emails leads to depression and anxiety how do we switch off? In life we sacrifice our own wellbeing at the altar of busyness and in the workplace the wellbeing of employees is placed secondary to the holy grail of ever increased perceived “productivity”.

What is known about wellbeing is that it is founded on a sense of satisfaction based on the need for social connection and the need for social contribution. The major world religions and philosophies all attribute happiness and fulfilment in life to giving, helping and contributing to others. The evidence-based benefits of mindfulness meditation in reducing anxiety and depression are well documented along with significant benefits to mental wellbeing.

We also now know that humans feel psychological pain or social pain in the same way that we feel physical pain so the psychological effects of religious intolerance, homophobia, prejudice and social isolation are experienced in the brain in exactly the same way as pain from physical injury or torture. Psychological injuries such as internalised homophobia can fester for years destroying a person from the inside out, until that person snaps. Reports of a drunk and belligerent Omar Mateen being thrown out of the Pulse nightclub on a regular basis tend not to paint a picture of a radical Islamic terrorist quietly scouting a potential target. Instead they point to a deeply troubled man with poor mental health who was struggling with significant personal issues.

What the tragic events of last week bring into sharp focus is the need for greater awareness and understanding around mental health. If we continue on the ever faster, ever busier, ever more complex technological trajectory we are currently on without significantly improved understanding of mental health and wellbeing, things are only set to get worse. We’ve become so clever at doing that we’re not looking at how we are being. When we are too busy or unaware to notice that the mental health of our family, friends or colleagues is suffering what dangers can that expose society to?

Imagine what more we could learn about how our minds work if we applied the same inventiveness and enthusiasm we show for developing technology to exploring, understanding and improving our mental wellbeing. Instead of being overly focused on our external appearance and our technology it’s time for us to fall in love with our minds. Mental wellbeing is the big new frontier opening up ahead of us, it will be the next big step on the human journey because the wellbeing of society depends on the mental wellbeing of individuals.

Click SOURCE below for the original article on LinkedIn