‘This might just change your life,’ said Andy Cope as a small crowd took their seats for a seminar on how to be happy.
The charismatic children’s author and speaker spent 12 years studying for a PHD trying to find the answer to the ultimate question.
Stark statistics show our struggle for happiness including some 57 million prescriptions for anti-depressants given out each year and the UK sitting at 27th in the happiness stakes – despite being the 5th richest country in the world.
Andy puts this down to a number of factors. The British inclination for continuous low level grumbling; the weather, traffic jams, work, the kids we love a good moan about it all.
The complexity of our lives is another factor. One man arrived at a previous seminar with four telephones which he continued to e-mail, text and phone on throughout – we all have one phone, many of us two.
Destination addiction was another – the theory that we will be happy on Friday, or we will be happy when we are on holiday. Happiness, Andy said, was not something to pursue but something for right now.
‘Take a leaf out of a child’s book,’ Andy advised. They can maintain happiness because they live right in the moment – hard to do in practice but worth a go.
Andy talked for a long time about the Monday phenomenon. We hate Monday, we talk about how much we hate it on Sunday before going to work Monday fully intending to have a bad day. ‘Throw away your grotty undies and put your best ones on and make Monday a great day,’ he said.
‘Happiness,’ he warned was not something to achieve overnight – you don’t go to the gym and come out with abs – it is something to work on.
Andy is a brilliant talker and delivered some clever insights into human behaviour sprinkled with common sense tips on how to make each day more positive.
Everyone left the seminar with a huge smile on their faces, a renewed sense of how to live each day better and I suspect a collective aim to invest in some new shiny positive pants – bring on Monday!
For more information on Andy Cope visit www.artofbrilliance.co.uk
Andy’s books include The Art of Being Brilliant and the Little Book of Emotional Intelligence