In this blog, I share tools, techniques and tips that I’ve picked up since beginning my coaching career in 2005.
These are techniques and tools that help me to consistently stay within a state of happiness.
Can I please mention that I am an innovator, not an inventor everything I share I’ve learned along the way.
For those of you new to my blog my names Davie McConnachie I’m the creator of DMC Fitness and it’s sister company Dynamic Mind Conditioning. I’m also very a proud dad and committed family man.
Professionally I am a high-performance executive coach and internationally endorsed fitness expert. I’ve designed and custom-built my own award-winning private gym.
Athletically I’ve competed nationally in MMA, Boxing, and Thai Boxing. Internationally in kettlebell sport, enjoyed the London Marathon, several half marathons and I’m a regular mountain trekker.
Since 2013 I’ve been professionally speaking and deliver motivational workshops within the corporate sector.
This is in direct contrast to my past. I suffered abuse as a child which led me to a downward spiral of alcohol and drug abuse, crime, time in police cells, and homeless centres.
At the age of 26 in 2003, I fell in love with Fitness and my whole life was transformed.
Monday the 15th January (only last week) has been named Blue Monday and is said to be the most depressing day of our year.
An article the weekly tabloid daily newspaper described blue Monday as a day calculated using a series of factors in a (not particularly scientific) mathematical formula.
The factors are the weather, debt level (specifically, the difference between debt and our ability to pay), the amount of time since Christmas, time since failing our new year’s resolutions, low motivational levels and the feeling of a need to take charge of the situation. It was originally conceived by a PR company but has now become an annual event.
With so much doom and gloom around let me share some techniques and tools I use both personally and professionally to keep me and those I coach in a state of happiness.
The dictionary states happiness as
- the state of being happy.” she struggled to find happiness in her life”
- contentment, pleasure, contentedness, satisfaction, cheerfulness, cheeriness, merriment, merriness, gaiety, joy, joyfulness, joyousness, joviality, jollity, jolliness, glee, blitheness, carefreeness, gladness, delight, good spirits, high spirits, light-heartedness, good cheer, well-being, enjoyment, felicity;
Most of the people I coach and I included want a higher level of happiness in some or many areas of our lives.
That’s not to say that we are sad or unhappy all of the time. It’s more of a wanting for a deeper level of personal happiness.
Is happiness a skill?
I think it’s a great question.
Generally, I’m a happy, upbeat and fulfilled guy as are the people I spend time with.
This wasn’t always the case as I spent many years over thinking, worrying, being anxious and suffering from harrowing bouts of intense depression.
Now I manage my own happiness by taking care of my emotional fitness and in this blog, I share my strategies and the coping mechanisms I use to stay on point. Or get back to point when I lose my way which happens at times.
The more I read about how to be happy the more I do believe it’s a skill that can be learned developed and practised.
Over the years I’ve picked up some great techniques that when combined consistently always help to keep me on point.
Here are my top 3
- 1- Become a journalist
It’s an amazing digital era that we live in. I love my iPhone and all the great tools it has. The notes page is a favourite for jotting down ideas, keeping my training diary and where I journal.
I’m a journalist in its truest form. Not a professional but a man who keeps a daily journal.
In the morning to start my day I answer the following questions.
Today I am grateful for…
Today I love…and… loves me
Today I am proud of…
Today I am excited about…
Today I am passionate about…
Today I will….. (positive statement of intention, e.g. be more compassionate caring and understanding).
Below are my top 10 reasons for practising gratitude.
- Focusses your brain on positives in life.
- Flushes brain with dopamine and serotonin the happy hormones.
- Makes you present to all the good in your life.
- Teaches the brain to search for positives.
- Seeds the spirit of the day.
- Allows time to verbally affirm your goals aloud and creates a manifestation within the universe.
- Can pull you out of a dark negative emotional state and can create a positive emotional state.
- Creates positive discipline.
- Allows you to share how you feel with clarity and authenticity.
- Opens deeper dialogue with yourself, loved ones and confidants.
I also write out my struggles and stresses so I can audit my thinking and see where I can find any disruptive patterns.
Success leaves clues and so do your struggles. Awareness is the very start of any transformation.
- 2 – Mindfulness
Learn to relax your mind and quiet the voice inside your head. Mindfulness is a great place to start with this.
Our blog on The Importance of Mindfulness Meditation has everything you need to know about it.
Once I’ve written in my journal I then do some form of mindfulness for anything between 15 to 45 mins depending on what day it is and how my schedule is looking. I use these techniques to seed the spirit of my day.
Harvard Business School Lecturer and global expert on happiness Shawn Achor states that the daily practice of gratitude combined with mindfulness and exercise will help the brain perform better between 30 – 37%. This is compared to a negative, neutral or stressed state of mind.
It’s all about those happy hormones serotonin and dopamine. With regular practice, the brain is taught to search for happiness.
The practice of gratitude has been a staple of my morning routine since 2013 and always will be. I call this my P.E.P – Positive Emotional Programming
- 3 – Exercise daily
It’s well documented that regular exercise can and will help with feeling low, anxious and in more severe cases help to counter depression.
When I say exercise I’m talking about movement and not always vigorous training. Movement is medicine in itself.
A daily mobility routine takes around 6 minutes when you know the flow and can be done anywhere. I do it while I’m making my morning hot drink as the kettle boils.
Walking is a great way to enjoy some light exercise.
Taking the stairs or purposely walking many flights is another hack for getting extra movement in daily.
Swimming, cycling, dancing, jogging, and skipping are all great forms of cardiovascular types of exercising.
Then bodyweight training, kettlebells, circuits and martial arts are more intensive ways to move.These lists are not exclusive anything that gets you moving is great as long as your moving.
If you’re the type of person who gets bored exercising on your own then join a group exercise class or hire a coach to teach you.
Do whatever you need to, to get moving and be active daily it’s so important to our physical, emotional and mental fitness.
My own love of all things fitness…
I first fell in love with fitness back in 2003 I was obese, an emotional wreck, suffering food disorder and battling addiction.
Since then I’ve hardly ever missed a workout. Fitness saved my life and has also given me a life worth living for that, I’ll be forever grateful.
I’m still as much in love with Fitness now as I was 15 years ago. My personal fitness has always been consistent however I’ve previously struggled with other areas of my fitness namely my mental fitness and my emotional fitness.
Combining my daily movement, mindfulness and journaling have all helped to keep my darkness at bay and allowed me to enjoy life so much more than before. I openly share my mental health challenges and how I manage them holistically.
I use these holistic tools and techniques to keep me centred and to live in a constant state of happiness. I know that I won’t always feel happy because well that’s just impossible. I can always bring myself back around.
If I’m especially pissed off or stressed out or at worse mentally fatigued then a good bit of journaling with a long relaxing meditation and some movement quickly transforms any negative state into a more empowered one.
I have digital app tools I use as well. I love creating Flipagrams of special days and celebrations or anything that will flush me with the feelings of love, pride, and joy.
Below are step by step instructions on using Flipagram
Making these videos is pretty straightforward.
Stage 1 – pull all the photos together you want to use and save them in an album.
Stage 2 – using instaframe make collages of photos you want to pull together. (optional)
Stage 3 – using flipagram upload all photos from the album then pick the track you want to use. Upload and review.
Stage 4 – upload to YouTube and it will be viewable for as long as YouTube is live.
One of my personal examples below,
These techniques work really well the challenge as with most things is getting started.
They a great way to be able to program your own emotional happiness and live within happy positive memories.
I hope you found this information useful.
If I can ever be of assistance to you and your fitness please get in touch via my email firstname.lastname@example.org
To health, happiness and “Strength for Life”,