“I will try to create more happiness in the world around me” was a pledge I made when I signed-up to Action for Happiness. You can do this to if you are moved to do so!
It has taken me on an amazing journey and one I am very grateful for. I have really woken up to how each small action, leads on to another and if you are open to the opportunities, they are endless!
In this case, I signed the pledge and joined the movement. I scoured Action for Happiness’ website and devoured all the really helpful materials and information contained within. It wasn’t that I was unhappy, far from it, but it had a draw for me and I don’t really know why. I liked the look of the Exploring What Matters course and wanted to join one in my area. However, there wasn’t one running and there wasn’t anything planned for near me. So, I decided to looking into starting a course up. It took a year before I finally put this message out on Facebook ‘I want to facilitate an Action for Happiness course, does anyone want to do this with me’. I had three offers from friends and people I was connected to. In the end, three of us decided to work together and applied to co-facilitate a course.
We ran the first course in Wolverhampton last year. It runs for 8 weeks and we ran it through the cold early winter months. It was hard work, but it was a challenge that was worth persevering with! So know we are putting ourselves back out there again and running a second course.
So, what is Exploring What Matters?
It is an 8-week course to help people learn, think about and discuss what really matters for a happy and meaningful life. We do this in a safe space, with volunteer facilitators and a group of like-minded people who are on a similar journey. The course involves lots of great ideas and conversations for discussion. The important part of the course, however, is that the participant be willing to do things differently. We all know that saying ‘If you always do what you’ve always done, then you will always get what you’ve always had’ right? So, there is a bit of a challenge for participants to take action, if they want to make change for themselves and the world! However, it is a gentle, supportive journey and we can undertake it together.
Each week runs on the same format with a different theme to explore. The themes are:
- What really matters in life?
- What actually makes us happy?
- Can we find peace of mind?
- How should we treat others?
- What makes for great relationships?
- Can we be happier at work?
- Can we build happier communities?
- How can we create a happier world?
There is a gentle introduction to the techniques of mindfulness, views from experts delivered via inspirational videos, scientific based facts around the theme, room for discussion with our fellow participants and then an opportunity for you to reflect and take action. Each week, we check in with what action we have all taken to help us be accountable for the change we want to make.
You can just attend each week and interact with the materials and discussions. However, there is a wealth of reading and extra resources recommended, so if you want to go deeper into the subject, there is also the opportunity to really study the topics between the sessions.
Like the idea of joining a course? Well if you are reading this before 5th September 2018 then here is the link to sign-up for the course in Wolverhampton. If you are further away, or reading this at a later date, then click on the link about for Action for Happiness and all the courses are listed there.
Thanks for reading!