Exercises to Find Happiness and Success

The hustle and grind of daily workloads can leave even the most mindful entrepreneurs feeling stressed and mentally cluttered.

In Dr. Srikumar S. Rao’s book, Are You Ready to Succeed?, readers learn how to strip down the learned behaviors and mindsets that are holding them back from being happy through exercises that encourage resilience, awareness and a lack of burden.

Here are a few:

No. 1: Do nothing for a half hour

We all live with mental chatter that can be deafening, keeping us perpetually stressed. Try doing nothing for a half hour: no watching TV, no checking emails, no reading, and even no daydreaming.

No. 2: Make a list of what you are grateful for about your job

Many of us can get caught up feeling miserable at our jobs and completely forget that it has redeeming qualities. Start with the bigger, more obvious things, like being able to pay your mortgage and having health insurance. From there, work your way down to the smaller things, like calling a customer who you enjoy talking to or the fact that the sodas in the vending machine are always really cold.

No. 3: Cultivate a new skill for work. 

If you have to make cold calls for work and you find that you dread making them, but you love writing, trying working on developing compelling copy and using mass email marketing and other tactics to eliminate something you hate and emphasize something you love.  If you don’t like telling the people who work for you that they aren’t pulling their weight, take a course on Socratic questioning.

No. 4: Make a tape recording of yourself on a phone call

We live in a me-centered universe: one in which we think about ourselves first, act in our own best interest, think about the impact that events will have on our own lives, and perceive others from our own view of the world (a businessman might meet a new person and see them as a potential contact; someone who is single might look at everyone they meet as a potential date), rather than as they actually are.

Record your side of a business phone call.  When you play it back, listen to how often words like “I” and “me” come up. Challenge yourself to live in an others-centered universe for a week and think about how you can be of service to them, not how they can be of service to you.

No. 5: Make a list of all of the people you blame for bad things that have happened to you

Once you realize that they were all acting in their perceived best interest and were not, in fact, “out to get you”, you can stop blaming people for things that have gone wrong in your life.  Everyone wants to be happy and everyone is motivated by that same desire.  Most of our perceived injustices are not really anyone’s “fault”.  If you were passed over for a job and your colleague was promoted, it is not their fault; you would have taken the same job if it had been offered to you.

Dr. Rao conceived the pioneering course  (http://www.cpminstitute.com/.) Creativity and Personal Mastery. This is the only business school course that has its own alumni association and it has been extensively covered in the media including the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the London Times, the Independent, Time, the Financial Times, Fortune, Forbes, the Guardian, Business Week, and dozens of other publications.