The seven Habits of Happiness

4 Oct 2020
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[To watch a video of this blog post, please click here: https://youtu.be/AO29cJcb08c">https://youtu.be/AO29cJcb08c and to listen to an audio version, please click here: https://soundcloud.com/lex-mckee/the-7-habits-of-happiness-part-1-rest">https://soundcloud.com/lex-mckee/the-7-habits-of-happiness-part-1-rest]

Why not the 7 Habits of Happy People, after all, that's far more "Covey"? That would’ve worked too, but I like the thought of “Happiness” as a person.

In Ancient times, “Wisdom” is described as the most attractive and desirable woman, and thus I think Happiness must surely be her rather radiant sister. In fact, Wisdom is the MOST desirable of Women but I have to say Happiness, her sister, is far more fun!

Today begins a series on the 7 Habits, timed fortuitously to be initially published just before World Mental Health Day on October 10th.

Let’s begin with an outline of her character. The 7 Habits are:

- Rest

- Health

- Gratitude

- Attitude

- Aptitude

- Contribution

- Connection

At first, it surprised me to learn that Happiness begins with “Rest”. Then I thought back to the children when they were each very young, a tired toddler is rarely a happy toddler! We still have our Inner Toddler, don’t we? Do you get cranky when you’re tired?

I’m writing this on my favourite day of the week: Saturday. This, for me, is my “Sabbath Rest”. I’m looking forward to a day where I will rest and play! There are strong winds blowing across the UK and I hope to stay indoors most of the day and compose! I will be Happy!

Taking one day away or aside each week where ‘play’ and ‘rest’ are the themes, is essential for developing a sense of rhythm at the moment. Otherwise, all days seem relatively the same now that I’ve been robbed of Church (Zoom Church is NOT for me!)

Every day, I have a series of Micro-Sabbaths too which I call, “FABs” – firstly, because they are fab and secondly, because it’s an initialism standing for, “Fluid Adjustment Breaks”!

If you are a fan of the Pomodoro Technique, you’ll be used to a shift every 25 minutes. I’m old-school and, like my old school, I have a micro-break every 45 minutes. I find that when I look after the Minutes like this, I stay energetic and the hours magically look after themselves.

Let me close this first session with some exciting Biology. You were NOT designed to sit still! Our lymphatic system is partially-pumped by movement. Sit still and your system will have more issues getting rid of toxins than it needs to. Physical Fidget FABs enable our bodies to flush out the toxins more effectively and efficiently – especially if you top up the tank with water! With many more of us working from home or under effective house arrest, moving every 45 minutes is an issue of health and happiness.

Some very poorly kept secrets to a happy and restful home-working environment are attention to posture, light, air, sound, and scent. In short, get a table that you can stand at from time to time, an ergonomic chair, natural light, fresh air, harmonious sound, and ‘clean’ scents such as a blend of Rosemary, Lavender, Citrus, and Eucalyptus.

Next time: Health and Happiness.

"Until then, keep moving... and have a rest!"

Lex

A Moodscope member.

A Moodscope member.

Thoughts on the above? Please feel free to post a comment below.

Moodscope members seek to support each other by sharing their experiences through this blog. Posts and comments on the blog are the personal views of Moodscope members, they are for informational purposes only and do not constitute medical advice.

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Comments

David Gosling

Oct. 5, 2020, 4:11 a.m.

Hello again Lex, I see you are still educating us on moodscope. I will watch video later your posting content regarding rest is very interesting.Thank you. David Gosling

Reply

Lex

Oct. 5, 2020, 4:25 a.m.

Thank you, David... I'm loving researching, writing, and recording this series - I need to be reminded of good practice (say he who isn't sleeping properly!!!) Have a mood-elevating day!

Silvia

Oct. 5, 2020, 5:51 a.m.

So nice to see how creative you are!me too, I will watch video later and read the post slowly.

Silvia

Oct. 5, 2020, 5:53 a.m.

Sorry, there is no way to edit the comment!

Lex

Oct. 5, 2020, 6:09 a.m.

Thanks, Silvia! Take your time... after all, it's all about 'rest'!

David Gosling

Oct. 5, 2020, 4:13 a.m.

Hello has anyone seen Molly????? I have posted first history is made.

Reply

Lex

Oct. 5, 2020, 4:26 a.m.

Molly will rise to the challenge, David. She is the Moodscope-1st Champion (until now!) Go Mollstar - we want to hear from you!

Paul

Oct. 5, 2020, 4:57 a.m.

Great post lex I actually listened yesterday on u tube and forwarded it to a few friends. They all liked it too. You have a great voice to listen to. I reckon you could sell ice cream to Eskimo’s. One of my daft sayings is I am having a 5 minute break for ten minutes see you in 15 minutes. Rest is extremely important, I think my dog could sleep 22 hours a day and she is always happy. Paul

Lex

Oct. 5, 2020, 5:24 a.m.

Oh Paul, I really did laugh out loud at your wonderful assertion: "I having a 5 minute break for ten minutes... see you in 15 minutes!" If ever there was a T Shirt quote waiting to be printed, that's it! Thanks for the encouragement about my voice too... I'm off to find some Eskimos to see if they'd like to buy a Marshall Fridge! https://marshall.com/lifestyle/fridges How cool are these fridges! Say "Hi!" to your dog, but only when she's not 'resting'!

AndrewH

Oct. 5, 2020, 7:09 a.m.

Hi Lex I've just looked up the Marshall fridge - wow! I don't know how I, as an aging rock super fan and trivia king, have managed not to know about them before. Maybe I've seen them in pictures/videos of studios and erroneously assumed they were recording kit. I hang my head in shame! Thanks for making me laugh. Andrew

Lex

Oct. 5, 2020, 7:38 a.m.

You're welcome, AndrewH... I hope there will there be one in your den in future! It certainly struck a chord with me!

Bearofliddlebrain

Oct. 5, 2020, 12:35 p.m.

I wonder if Oli has one of these frigos?? Super cool in more ways than one!!! Bear x x x

Molly

Oct. 5, 2020, 1:42 p.m.

Nice to be missed David and Lex. Oh and those fridges, I want one xx

Lex

Oct. 5, 2020, 2:13 p.m.

MOLLY! Phew!! xx

Oli

Oct. 5, 2020, 3:47 p.m.

Haha! the fridges are great fun :-) I was aware of them and fair play to Marshall for not missing a trick. I played Marshalls for about 30 years so I've done my time with them. But about 10 years ago a big Marshall amp died at a gig the night before I was due to play a festival the next day. First thing I rushed to my local music shop and picked up an emergency amp. It was an Orange. And I've played Orange amps ever since. Ah, nerd talk! sorry! :-)

Lex

Oct. 11, 2020, 9 p.m.

Word, bro!

Orangeblossom

Oct. 5, 2020, 7:24 a.m.

Hi Lex, thanks for the ingredients that comprise a balanced life. I have made a note of them & copied the Info graph. It is like a wheel. Hope that you have a good week ahead.

Reply

Lex

Oct. 5, 2020, 7:40 a.m.

Hi Orangeblossom... now that you mention the wheel it reminds me of the wheel of life exercise you sometimes see in personal development programmes. In this exercise, scoring poorly in any one area distorts the wheel and leads to a bumpy journey in life. Thank you for inspiring this through... may you have a good week ahead too!

The Gardener

Oct. 5, 2020, 7:51 a.m.

Hey Lex, have you been advising Boris Johnson? He promised us, yesterday, a 'bumpy journey' this winter. Perhaps he ought to use the wheel of life!

Lex

Oct. 5, 2020, 8:21 a.m.

Now that would be a Coup, wouldn't it... or a Coupe for a bumpy journey! What do you think, Lex OBE? Sir Lexalot? Nah...

The Gardener

Oct. 5, 2020, 8:46 a.m.

Occasionally, Monsieur, Lord 'Vexalot' when it takes us dim-wits half a day to get the gist of the blog!

Catherine

Oct. 5, 2020, 9:59 a.m.

But actually Gardener we aren’t dim-wits!

Lex

Oct. 5, 2020, 10:01 a.m.

Sir Confusalot, it shall be henceforth! He shall learn to write more clearly or have his knighthood removed!

The Gardener

Oct. 5, 2020, 10:07 a.m.

Floppy Ears, some are, sometimes - depends how long the brain takes to activate in the morning. It's not the writing, Lex - but getting to grips with the message.

Catherine

Oct. 5, 2020, 11:52 a.m.

TG some days my brain doesn’t activate at all!! xx

The Gardener

Oct. 5, 2020, 7:49 a.m.

Oh Lex, pomodoro system - it is Italian for 'tomato'. I know Italy pretty well, only breaks are for 35 coffees per day. Then the evening 'in giro' an hour walking and gossiping, love it. I have started a new Future Learn course on 'Happiness' - comes from Palermo in Sicily - goodness knows what will turn up. Course on Anxiety and Depression from Reading University excellent - this week CBT - from the Charlie Waller institute - sure somebody here will have heard of it. I think the Japanese have to leave their computers and stretch every hour? I follow a German system, day in half hour 'chunks', amazing what you can do in half an hour. Thanks Lex.

Reply

Lex

Oct. 5, 2020, 8:33 a.m.

Yes, Dear Gardener... I think it was our Charles Darwin who claimed the secret to his own 'success' was recognising the difference between 10 minutes and a quarter of one hour. He said much can be done in quarter of an hour, and thus half an hour will be truly amazing!

Oli

Oct. 5, 2020, 4:18 p.m.

Nice to hear you're enjoying the studying Gardener. If the CBT course gets onto what's often called "third wave CBT" then wave at me -- that's the area of theory where I'm most at home! :-)

Silvia

Oct. 6, 2020, 7:47 a.m.

Hi Gardener, please tell me more about this German system.

Marigold

Oct. 5, 2020, 8:45 a.m.

Thanks Gardener, all I could think of was tinned tomatoes. I will give it some effort later in the day.

Reply

The Gardener

Oct. 5, 2020, 9:35 a.m.

Marigold, I think tinned tomatoes are 'pomodori pelati', which sounds like a new form of aerobics. My mind is in serious danger of going into 'flea' mode, leaping from subject to subject, no shortage at the moment.

Lex

Oct. 5, 2020, 10:02 a.m.

The Pomodoro technique was named after a tomato-themed clockwork timer. They are very cute and much more fun than the alarm on a smartphone.

Marigold

Oct. 5, 2020, 1:14 p.m.

Lex wow,just wow!

The Gardener

Oct. 5, 2020, 9:52 a.m.

I'm sewing, which provokes boredom. Just 'googled' the 'Inn of the Sixth Happiness', must get the DVD. Ingrid Bergman as a missionary in China, as Japan is attacking. She leads 100 orphans to safety. Has anybody visited the temple of Borobodur, in Java, with its seven levels, arriving at 7, happiness.

Reply

David Gosling

Oct. 5, 2020, 12:42 p.m.

Interesting comments from you all and you Lex but where is Molly???????????????????????

Reply

Lex

Oct. 5, 2020, 2:08 p.m.

It's a worry, isn't it, David? Molly! Molly!! Molly!!! https://youtu.be/SIaFtAKnqBU

Molly

Oct. 5, 2020, 2:18 p.m.

Ha ha, that clip Lex, exactly how I feel, ha ha. Sorry to worry you, just running a bit late today. Thanks both for your concern xx

David Gosling

Oct. 5, 2020, 5:42 p.m.

Good news from you Molly,come on get your act together.I nearly had you reported as a Missing Person. Ha Ha Ha to you too.

Molly

Oct. 5, 2020, 8:49 p.m.

David, I’m here every day, just a bit late today :-) I do often reply when the blog comes through, but sometimes I’m sleeping zzzzzz

David Gosling

Oct. 5, 2020, 10:20 p.m.

History is made, keep safe and look forward to your comments again soon, good night or should that be good morning?

Lex

Oct. 10, 2020, 7:23 p.m.

The Screaming Goat creases me up every time!!! xx

Bearofliddlebrain

Oct. 5, 2020, 12:51 p.m.

Dear Sir Lexalot or should it be Lord Neilex?! Sometimes I am confused by your blogs and if because I am a Bearofliddlebrain, I don’t quite understand - I will miss a comment. Today I getcha!! I saw the wheel of fortune above and thought of the wheel that you and OB mention: like a food wheel...and the same applies to the list of ‘ingredients’ in the food wheel - if there’s an imbalance, the gut won’t be happy; so beware selling your ice cream - too much ice cream and the eskimos will be sick!! As regards the lymphatic system - I notice that if I have sat still for too long on my pootery thing, I get back ache, feel sluggish aches and pains in legs - especially sciatic nerve pain....so must keep moving and having a break! Thank you for your time well-spent on Saturday! Ve ve good of you dear boy. Bear hugs x x x

Reply

The Gardener

Oct. 5, 2020, 1:15 p.m.

Bear, when I first started my historical research here, the whole thing was so fascinating, and it was eyes to 16th c writing, then transfer to data-base, I did not move at all, and had to be shoe-horned out of my chair after 3 hours.xx

Lex

Oct. 5, 2020, 2:12 p.m.

Hi Bearski! It was really good to dig a little deeper into the Lymphatic (excellent article on the Nursing Times site)... I had (innocently and erroneously) been teaching for years that the Lymphatic System was ONLY pumped by physical activity. Now, I've learned that there is a form of muscle-movement like peristalsis in the gut. This is why people can survive if they are bed-ridden for extended periods. Nevertheless, it is highly advantageous for us to move every 25mins or 45mins (if you're well hard like me!) ***

Molly

Oct. 5, 2020, 2:13 p.m.

Hi Lex Rest, so important. I’ve always needed a lot of sleep, I often sleep for 12 hours and feel better for it. When working, I would have an hour’s sleep as soon as I got home (usually in the bath!). I’m sitting a lot these days, but I tend to get up when the adverts are on (I hate them) I like the Lloyds one with the horse in but they are showing it so much even that is getting boring lol. So I get up and do a chore, like wash up, or tidy up, or get a drink etc. I hope I have the balance right! I do some stretches whilst sitting although like Bear, I should be supporting my back more. I tend to sit on the edge of the settee on my IPad (which is on the coffee table). I haven’t watched your video yet but I will do in a bit. Thank you for your blog. Love from Mollstar xx

Reply

Lex

Oct. 10, 2020, 7:21 p.m.

Hey, Mollstar! Thanks for letting me know I'd missed some of your comments. "Movement" is one of the seven characteristics of any living organism. We humans are getting too 'still'. Monday's blog will talk about some really silly exercises that you might just get the giggles with... I do hope so!! L'xx

Oli

Oct. 5, 2020, 4:15 p.m.

Food for thought here Lex. For a few years I've been a bit dismissive of looking for happiness in my own life. I did that for a bunch of reasons but maybe I should re-evaluate? I don't want to be unhappy but I find it hard to imagine being happy. My focus has gone by 45 minutes; that's too long for me and actually it was too long for me back at school. I'm a 25 minute-er. I like that method. I use a timer. :-)

Reply

Lex

Oct. 10, 2020, 7:19 p.m.

We're at an interesting crossroads, aren't we, Oli? I'm happy again, at last - genuinely happy after nearly a decade! But there again, I'm in love...

Molly

Oct. 5, 2020, 4:23 p.m.

Lex, I’ve just watched the video and it’s excellent. How do you do it? So clever. Anyone who struggled with the blog, I recommend watching the video. Thanks Lex xx

Reply

Lex

Oct. 10, 2020, 7:17 p.m.

Thanks, Molly... It's an amazingly helpful piece of software that really suits those who love to write first. You copy and paste your 'script' into the software and then it uses it's (sometimes) clever programming to find clips that share the theme of your words. The results are often hilarious and occasionally really inappropriate... but I find that entertaining! It's easy to change the clips until you get the ones you want. Then, if, and only if, you want to, you can add your own audio track. It's called "Vidnami". It enables me to create a video quite quickly compared with my posh video software where I have to create everything from scratch. THANK YOU for encouraging me! L'xx

Brum Mum

Oct. 5, 2020, 5:04 p.m.

Loved this. Just digesting after a day’s work and also eating my dinner!! I know feel totally justified in the fact that I leave my desk every half an hour or so and dog walk for an hour before work and for half an hour at lunchtime. I had a critical email from the top dog today and so a rapid dog walk helped me calm down and also reconsider my rather emotional reaction. So much to consider I will share on Facebook and revisit further this week. Gracias, amigo.

Reply

Lex

Oct. 10, 2020, 7:13 p.m.

Bless you, Brum Mum! Both me and the dog are grateful!!

David Gosling

Oct. 5, 2020, 5:59 p.m.

Hello Lex, Like Molly having two bites at the cherry here. I have been self isolating for nearly two years only going out for a mile waik to get a newspaper every day. So like the acting profession I have been resting big time. In this time I have put a considerable strain on my vital organs as my weight has increased by 4 stone, so now morbidly obese. I like your teaching style which is very professional and thank you very much for all your blogs. i will write a blog one day if anyone is interested, to report what I found about my time resting it was very revealing to myself and may interest others on Moodscope. Bye for now, David Gosling

Reply

Molly

Oct. 5, 2020, 10:21 p.m.

David, I certainly would be interested in a blog from you. Two years of ‘resting’ as you put it. Or two years of ‘****’ ? Do tell us more about it. Molly xx

David Gosling

Oct. 6, 2020, 3:40 a.m.

THank you Molly as you can see I also be a night owl on here, watch this space!!!!

Lex

Oct. 10, 2020, 6:47 p.m.

Hi David and Molly I'm catching up!!! Forgive my tardiness. I used to have some system where, whenever someone commented, I got an email. I've broken that somehow. But I do care. If I miss you, it simply means I've missed you. David, I'd LOVE to read a blog on what your reflections are over this period of 'rest'.

Suzy

Oct. 6, 2020, 4:01 a.m.

Love this Lex! Funny how the most important lessons are the most slippery ones.

Reply

Lex

Oct. 10, 2020, 6:42 p.m.

Ain't that the truth, Suzy?!!!

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