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10 Things Bhutan People Do Differently That Make Them The Happiest People

10 Things Bhutan People Do Differently That Make Them The Happiest People

For those who may not know, Bhutan is a country in Southeast Asia that is just south of China. The country is known for being really small and for being really happy. How do they do it? Let us check out some of the things they do differently that make them so happy.

1. They manage spiritual and material happiness equally

Bhutan

    Here in the western world, we put way too much stock into the things we own. We’re happier when we have the latest iPhone or the latest fashion. That’s not a very good way to think and it can cause us unneeded stress and unhappiness when we can’t afford those things. In Bhutan, they only let globalization affect them over the last ten years but they have done so in a manner that allows their citizens to balance their material possessions and their spirituality and that just makes them happier. They don’t care if they don’t have the latest iPhone. They’re just happy to be alive.

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    2. They have among the fastest growing GDPs in the world

    When people are making money, everyone’s happy. Bhutan’s GDP (gross domestic product) has been growing steadily over the last several years. By allowing India to invest heavily in hydro-power in their country, Bhutan is quickly becoming rich and they don’t have to do that much work. Talk about managing your resources well!

    3. They don’t care about TV, radio, or the internet

    Lets face it, those things make us feel terrible about ourselves. On TV, we see beautiful people making dump trucks full of money and that makes us jealous and angry. On the internet there are trolls, a constant influx of bad news, and all sorts of other bad things. We get obsessed with social media and get upset when we don’t get re-tweets or likes on Facebook. When you don’t have to deal with that nonsense, life is generally better.

    4. 50% of the country is protected as a national park

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    bhutan happy

      The environment is an important thing to the Bhutan people. So much so that half of their country is a national park. The forest, animals, and environment are strictly protected and the country announced not long ago that 60% of their country would be safe from things like deforestation permanently. Caring that much for the planet makes people feel happy.

      5. They’re mostly Buddhist

      Buddhism is one of the calmest and happiest religions on Earth. They believe in karma. The Buddhist version of karma (the original definition) is that people who live good lives are closer to enlightenment and are reincarnated as better creatures when they’re reborn. This prompts them to live good lives, do good deeds to one another, and be good people. When people aren’t at each others’ throats, it makes those around them generally happier.

      6. They actually measure their own happiness

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      Bhutan

        It’s always nice when the government lends a helping hand but when was the last time any of us actually believed our government wanted us to be happy? In Bhutan this is not something people have to wonder. Their government actually measures their countries happiness using a metric called the Gross National Happiness or GNH. They’re not perfect at providing happiness to their citizens but the fact that they acknowledge and measure happiness probably makes them better at keeping their people happy than other governments.

        7. Where they live is gorgeous

        Bhutan is situated in the Himalayan Mountains and well over 60% of their country is untouched wilderness. People go to places like this for vacation. We imagine that living there is probably more preferable, peaceful, and visually enjoyable than stomping around the concrete jungle that is the city every day.

        8. The gap between normal people and royalty isn’t that far

        Thanks to their isolationist tendencies, the people of Bhutan are very close to one another. In one journalist’s visit, he spied a young man playing basketball with a bunch of kids on a public court. Later on he was introduced to that man and also played basketball with him. Much later it was revealed that the man was actually a prince of Bhutan. Joe Biden isn’t out shooting basketball with a bunch of random local kids. That kind of closeness between the high and low classes probably helps everyone like everyone more.

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        9. They’re well rested

        According to national surveys, around 2/3 of all Bhutanese people get at least eight hours of sleep per night. That’s a lot better than most countries and that’s especially true of industrialized countries. The benefits of sleep on happiness, productivity, and overall health is extremely well documented. Having most of the country get a bunch of sleep definitely contributes and having a culture that inspires people to get the appropriate amount of sleep every night is something they do differently.

        10. They have less pollution

        Bhutan

          One of the side effects of being so environmentally conscious is that the Bhutanese people live in less pollution than pretty much everyone else. They do have some things around that cause pollution such as automobiles. However, they lack the miles upon miles of factories and waste-producing businesses. This makes the air, water, and ground much cleaner. There is a reason why pictures of untouched wildernesses are so beautiful and desirable. It’s because they aren’t polluted with potentially harmful chemical fumes.

          Bhutan is relatively new to the world at large because they chose to remain isolated long after everyone else had integrated themselves into the world. This has caused them to have some older values and some of them may seem outdated by today’s standards. Some of them may not even be morally or ethically correct. That doesn’t mean there aren’t a few things their older values can’t teach us!

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          Joseph Hindy

          A writer, editor, and YouTuber who likes to share about technology and lifestyle tips.

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          Last Updated on April 11, 2019

          How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

          How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

          Possessing strong communication skills will help you in every phase of your life. This is especially true in the workplace.

          I have personally worked with several leaders who were masters of communication. A few were wonderful speakers who could tell a great story and get everyone in the room engaged. Those of us in attendance would walk away feeling inspired and eager to help with what came next. Others were very skilled at sharing a clear direction and job expectations.

          I knew exactly what was expected of me and how to achieve my goals. This was the foundation of an energized and vibrant role I was in. What I have found is strong communication skills are incredibly helpful and sometimes critical in how well we perform at work.

          Here we will take a look at how to improve communication skills for workplace success.

          How Communication Skills Help Your Success

          Strong communication skills pave the way for success in many ways. Let’s look at a few of the big ones.

          Create a Positive Experience

          Here are two examples of how well developed communication skills helps create a positive experience:

          When I first moved to the city I now live in, I began a job search. Prior to my first live interview, I was told an address to go to. Upon arriving at the address provided, I drove around and around attempting to find the location. After 15 minutes of circling and looking for the address, I finally grabbed a parking spot and set out on foot.

          What I discovered was the address was actually down an alley and only had the number over the door. No sign for the actual company. The person that gave me those very unclear directions provided a bad experience for me.

          Had they communicated the directions to get there in a clear manner, my experience would have been much better. Instead the entire experience started off poorly and colored the entire meeting.

          As a recruiter, I frequently provide potential candidates with information about a job I’m speaking to them about. In order to do this, I also provide a picture of the overall company, the group they might be joining, and how their role fits in and impacts the entire company.

          Time and time again I have been told by candidates that I have provided the clearest picture of a company and role they have ever heard. They have a positive experience when I clearly communicate to them. Even when the position does not work out for them, often times they will want to stay in touch with me due to the open communication and beneficial experience they had during the interviewing process.

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          Strong communication skills will provide a positive experience in virtually any interaction you have with someone.

          Help Leadership Skills

          It’s certainly a skill all its own to be able to lead others.

          Being a mentor and guiding others towards success is a major hallmark of great leaders. Another characteristic of effective leaders is the ability to communicate clearly.

          As I referenced above, having a leader who can plainly articulate the company’s mission and direction goes a really long way towards being the Captain of the boat that others want to follow. It’s like saying “here’s our destination and this is how we are going to get there” in a way that everyone can get on board with.

          Another critical component of everyone helping to sail the boat in the right direction is knowing what your portion is all about. How are you helping the boat move towards its destination in the manner than is consistent with the leaders’ vision?

          If you have a boss or a manager that can show you what it takes for not only you to be successful, but also how your performance helps the company’s success then you’ve got a winner. A boss with superior communication skills.

          Build Better Teams

          Most of us work in teams of some sort or another. During the course of my career, I have led teams up to 80 and also been an individual contributor.

          In my individual contributor roles, I have been part of a larger team. Even if you are in business for yourself, you have to interact with others in one manner or another.

          If you have strong communication skills, it helps to build better teams. This is true whether you are in an IT department with 100 other fellow programmers or if you own your own business and have customers or vendors you communicate with.

          When you showcase your robust ability to communicate well with others while interacting with them, you are building a better team.

          Now let’s jump in to how to improve communication skills to help you pave the way for your workplace success.

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          How to Improve Communication Skills for Workplace Success

          There are many tips, tricks, and techniques to improve communication skills. I don’t want to overwhelm you with too much information, so let’s focus on the things that will provide the biggest return on your time investment.

          Most of these tips will be fairly easy to become aware of but will take time and effort to implement. So let’s go!

          1. Listen

          Ever heard the saying you have two ears and one mouth for a reason? If you haven’t, then here’s the reason:

          Being a good listener is half the equation to being a good communicator.

          People who have the ability to really listen to someone can then actually answer questions in a meaningful way. If you don’t make the effort to actively listen, then you are really doing yourself and the other person a disservice in the communication department.

          Know that person who is chomping at the bit to open his or her mouth the second you stop talking? Don’t be that person. They haven’t listened to at least 1/2 of what you’ve said. Therefore the words that spill out of their mouth are going to be about 1/2 relevant to what you just said.

          Listen to someone completely and be comfortable with short periods of silence. Work on your listening skills first and foremost.

          2. Know Your Audience

          Knowing your audience is another critical component to having strong communication skills. The way you interact with your manager should be different than how you interact with your kids. This isn’t to say you need to be a different person with everyone you interact with. Far from it.

          Here is a good way to think about it:

          Imagine using your the same choice of words and body language you use with your spouse while interacting with your boss. That puts things in a graphic light!

          You want to ensure you are using the type of communication most relevant to your audience.

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          3. Minimize

          I have lunch with a business associate about 3 times a year. We’ve been talking for several years now about putting a business deal together.

          He is one of those people that simply overwhelms others with a lot of words. Sometimes when I ask him a question, I get buried beneath such an avalanche of words that I’m more confused than when I asked the question. Needless to say this is most likely a large portion of why we never put the deal together.

          Don’t be like my lunch business associate. The goal of talking to or communicating with someone is to share actual information. The goal is not to confuse someone, it’s to provide clarity in many cases.

          State what needs to be stated as succinctly as possible. That doesn’t mean you can’t have some pleasant conversation about the weather too.

          The point is to not create such an onslaught of words and information that the other person walks away more confused than when they started.

          4. Over Communicate

          So this probably sounds completely counter intuitive to what I just wrote about minimizing your communication. It seems like it might be but it’s not.

          What I mean by over communicating is ensuring that the other person understands the important parts of what you are sharing with them. This can be done simply yet effectively. Here’s a good example:

          Most companies have open enrollment for benefits for the employees in the fall. The company I work for has open enrollment from November 1 to 15. The benefits department will send out a communication to all employees around October 1st, letting them know open enrollment is right around the corner and any major changes that year. There’s also a phone number and email for people to contact them with any questions.

          Two weeks later, we all get a follow up email with basically the same information. We get a 3rd communication the week before open enrollment and another one 1 day before it starts.

          Finally we get 2 emails during enrollment reminding us when open enrollment ends.

          There’s minimal information, it’s more of a reminder. This is effective over communication.

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          5. Body Language

          The final critical component to how to improve communication skills for workplace success is body language. This is something most of us have heard about before but, a reminder is probably a good idea.

          When I am in a meeting with someone I am comfortable with, I tend to kind of slouch down in my chair and cross my arms. When I catch myself doing this, I sit up straight and uncross my arms. I remember that crossing arms can many times be interpreted as a sign of disagreement or conflict.

          In general, the best rule of thumb is to work towards having open body language whenever possible at work. This means relaxing your posture, not crossing your arms, and looking people in the eye when speaking with them.

          When you are speaking in front of others, stand up straight and speak in a clear voice. This will convey confidence in your words.

          Conclusion

          Possessing strong communication skills will help you in many facets of your life and most certainly in the workplace.

          Good communication helps create better teams, positive experiences with those we interact with, and are critical for leadership.

          There are numerous tactics and techniques to be used to improve communication skills. Here we’ve reviewed how to improve communication skills for workplace success.

          Now go communicate your way to success.

          More Resources About Effective Communication

          Featured photo credit: HIVAN ARVIZU via unsplash.com

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