Corporate Fast Track

Leadership Skills

Happiness and Leadership From the Inside Out

Happiness and Leadership From the Inside Out

Happiness and Leadership From the Inside Out

Strategy for Women in Business

Last week, as I paid at the counter, a manager approached us and congratulated us for our broad smiles: “You look truly happy; you have these huge smiles on your faces.”

“It’s genetic,” I responded as I glanced next to me, “My smile looks just like my dad’s.” My father proudly showed an even greater smile on his face as I said this.

“I was raised in the Philippines,” the manager said, “And my father said I should jump up and down every morning for just being alive.”

Though many people believe that outside objects or events will make them happy, happiness comes from within. The same concept holds true for leadership: you may take as many courses as you’d like, have as much training and coaching as you’d like, but if leadership doesn’t come from within, your followers will know. How? They will follow you as a leader, because they will believe you stand by what you believe. And they will be loyal to you, because they admire you and want to follow you. 

Over the summer my son has been in an intensive internship program selling books from door-to-door in another state. Aside from knowing this experience will bring him back a new man at nineteen, he has faced the need to boost his energy, force a smile even if he didn’t feel like having one and pump up his attitude in spite of doors slamming in his face, home owners ignoring him, dogs chasing – and biting him – and the realization that he may have no sales after knocking at 100 doors.

Here are some of the lessons he has learned that we can all use as we strive to bring out the best in ourselves.

1.    SMILE: Whether you are talking with a friend, family member, your children, your boss, your employees or someone on the phone, remember to keep a smile on your face.

2.    KNOW THYSELF: If you see yourself putting too much energy on outside “sources” that “will make you happy – or not,” whether it is a new house, outfit, car, jewelry, face or body, think again. If you are not feeling well, these external gifts won’t make you any happier. Focus on finding that inside happiness first and then reward yourself.

3.    KEEP A POSITIVE OUTLOOK ABOUT THE FUTURE: You may be experiencing  hard times but you can avoid perpetuating them. Bring about positive thoughts of how you will overcome the obstacles and keep an eye in the future.

4.    SHARE YOUR JOY WITH OTHERS: Being in a great mood is infectious and is key to a happy household, workplace and organization. Children are ready to adapt to their parents’ moods just as employees are ready to adapt to their bosses’ moods. So, as home goddess, entrepreneur or corporate warrior, your great disposition will bring out the best in others as they tune into and match your own vibration.

5.    TAKE GREAT CARE OF YOURSELF: Your integrated health and wellness in the physical, emotional, intellectual, spiritual and social dimensions are key to experience the ultimate Power of Wellbeing®.

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I really liked this article and felt it made some good points that are needed when one is in the role of leadership. The attitude and disposition of the “leader”

J. Davis — Estate Administrator

Happiness article was great BECAUSE it had practices combined with the "why", research. Excellent article. Keep up the practices, good to know problem better to know what i can do about it.

F. Woods — CEO/PrimeSource

When you smile, it helps others be happy at the same time. It also makes them wonder and rethink about their life.

A. Benavente — AA

I could not agree more with this article. In particular, as females executives we tend to consistently forget #5! I know that at the end of the day, giving all I can to my team and our customers, and spending as much meaningful time as possible with my young twin daughters.. there is little time or room for “me”. However, as I have progressed in my career I know that if I am not rested, and doing the things needed to remain healthy (exercise, quiet time, investing in friendships and more) I will not be an effective leader as the light that needs to shine thru will be dim. If I had any advice to give new female leaders it would be – “it’s ok to take care of you.. and frankly, it is the most important investment you can make”.

E. Knight — CEO, New England University, LLC

Great article. Good to read/hear something positive and began with something so simple as smiling. I'm now smiling.

W. Foster — Sales Representative

I get more satisfaction from making others feel better about some of the most unusual things that happen in life by empathising with them - last time I checked no matter who you are you still have to put your pants on one leg at a time - & no matter who I meet I kill them with kindness in my voice - a jinglebell skirt works good to lift up the spirits of my co-workers every Friday too!

C. R — Customer service specialist manager

So true about keeping a positive outlook for the future in these unsure times of declining budgets, the economy, etc.

R. Bald — Project Manager

I found this to all be true. Just like the book “The Secret” life is about what your thinking, what you want it to be. Stay positive and life will be positive!

L. Bochert — Training Manager

I think that sometimes those of us in Management forget that our staff is watching and taking their cue from them. We need to invest more in ourselves to we have more to pass on to others.

S. Phillips — Practice Manager

About the Author

Dr. Gabriela Cora

Dr. Gabriela Cora, 

is president and founder of The Executive Health & Wealth Institute. She is author of Leading under Pressure® ( and Alpha Female ( Dr. Corá has been interviewed by CNN, FOX News, The New York Times, Chicago Tribune, Smart Money, MSN, Women’s Entrepreneur and American Medical News. A renaissance woman, she is a corporate consultant, wellness coach, medical doctor with an MBA, expert speaker, spouse and mother of two young adults. She consults and advises business owners and Fortune 500 companies and international organizations including The Coca-Cola Company, the pharmaceutical industry and New York Life. She has given presentations in the Americas, Europe, Africa and Asia.

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