It’s official. I have somehow managed to hit the 1,000 job interview mark at work!
Sometimes I wonder how the hell I’m still doing this – after all, a job like this makes you susceptible to losing your faith in humanity. Most of the time, however, I am so grateful for the information, stories, experience and color these interviews add to my life. Seriously, I’ve got some great stories for social gatherings!
At the 200 interview mark I was starting to notice patterns among people. This was right at the beginning of starting my life coaching certification so I was becoming very aware of the problems people are facing not just on the job hunt, but within themselves and life in general. Below you’ll find a few of the patterns I have noticed:
- People get in their own way. Their egos are strong and loud.
- Lack mentality is an epidemic. Most of them have some crazy fears around money and scarcity.
- People who act like complete jerks a) don’t usually notice they are doing it and b) have something very funky going on inside of them.
- People let their job problems seep into every part of their lives. Or, vice versa, which may be even worse.
- People are VERY quick to judge themselves and others.
- People don’t put their money where their mouth is. They talk a lot about changing, quitting their jobs, running their own business and the like but never do anything about it – and they certainly don’t want to financially invest in their own betterment!
See? I told you this job might make you lose faith in humanity. But for me, it’s been an eye opener. I already had a feeling that people were living on autopilot, merely existing rather than living, but conducting all these interviews has certainly proved it. At the end of the day, regardless of what issues they were bringing into my office, most people had the same basic problems: they weren’t really living and they’d been hurt. Maybe even really hurt.
This prompted me to start reading and researching the psychology of happiness. I asked myself some very basic, yet fundamental questions. Why are we living this way? Why are we so quick to judge, control and attack ourselves and others? Do we have a predisposition to viewing life in a negative way? Is this genetic? How come only a few people seem to really be happy? And how can we spread the happiness?
What resulted was a journey (and a newfound love) for metaphysics, other forms of philosophy, spiritual teachings of all kinds, psychology, neuroscience and quantum physics. My Catholic upbringing had already exposed me to some of this stuff, but after witnessing first hand how people are sleeping through life I needed to know more. Never in a million years did this English major think she’d say “Wow I’m totally digging – and understanding – neuroscience right now.”
My research was astounding. Turns out we have a set point for happiness. Fifty percent is determined by genetics, 10% is determined by circumstances outside of ourselves (car, money, house) and the other 40% is totally up to us. By this point its not rocket science. Things like chronic stress and anger make us feel like shit. Meanwhile things like exercise, community, feeding our brain with good stuff and proper management of our emotions makes us feel better. The point here is that happiness is up to us – we have more control than we think!
You know what else is interesting? Having material things doesn’t make much of a difference. Sure, if you take a homeless guy and give him some food and a roof over his head it’s going to really affect his happiness quotient for the long term. But if you go from maybe $100,000 to $500,000 or even $1 million the positive affects don’t last very long. Ever notice how millionaire athletes are notorious for blowing through their money? Or how some people keep finding themselves in the same financial problems even when they make more money? Have you noticed the string of suicide and crimes in the athletic world lately? Or how some of the world’s most famous actors and musicians are so deeply troubled? Thats because material wealth and success affects our happiness to a minimal degree.
Oh…and this one might actually blow your mind. We affect our surroundings. Our thoughts and our feelings can affect other people, animals and even our reality – and there is science that really backs this up! The idiom “I’m getting a good/bad vibes” is based on actual science!
Of course, we all already know this stuff. We’re born knowing this stuff. We can feel it. Some people even tell us these things long after we’ve forgotten. So why aren’t we listening?
Below you’ll find some great books and documentaries on this very subject. I promise you won’t look at life the same way again.
The Unleashing Part 1 by Osmar Vindel (This one really goes into a bunch of other resources as well. Way too many to count!)
Happy reading + watching everyone! Feel free to share any thoughts or resources in the comments below.