They know the secret to life. Literally.
They are extremely rare, making up .00000085 percent of the global population.
That means of the seven billion people on the planet, there are approximately sixty of these people alive today.
They are fueled by their resilience, humor, and joie de vivre.
They are extremely hard to find, and should you have the good fortune to spend a moment with one…embrace him or her with all your heart. Their wisdom will infect you.
They are scattered across the globe in third floor walk-ups of urban skyscrapers and in hidden, remote, off-the-grid villages.
They are “supercentenarians,” people who are 110 years or older.
Supercentenarians are the Happiness Champions of the World.
When my grandma passed away, I was moved to find a charity in New York City that helps the elderly who lack access to an old age home, money, family, or friends.
This charity’s oldest client, a woman named Katherine, was 111 years old…or rather, 111 years young!
As I followed the social worker up the steps leading to Katherine’s third story Upper East Side apartment, I wondered what it would be like to meet a woman who, upon turning eighty, had another lifetime (thirty-plus years) ahead of her!
Would she be wired differently? Would there be something unique about her attitude, her energy, her eyes, her smile?
I walked in the front door and Katherine excitedly threw her arms in the air as if I were a long lost friend.
While most elderly folks might fear the appearance of a new person in their home, Katherine was inherently trusting.
As the quote goes, “Trust your journey.” That was Katherine’s mantra throughout her winding and weaving life.
Born in South Dakota before it was considered a state, Katherine had a talk radio show, and she moved to New York City because she wanted the big city experience.
She was married five times.
A normal person might quit after the third or fourth marriage, but Katherine kept on truckin’!
While there were definite signs her body was starting to disconnect from her soul (including loose dentures that made it hard to understand her), Katherine had the vibrancy of a young child.
Squirming around, flirting, a glimmer in her eyes, a passion to meet, to share, to taste … she was squeezing every possible ounce out of a life that began way back in 1903.
When the social worker put his hands on her asking, “Do you want to lie down?” she said, “Are you propositioning me?”
Ha! She was still as frisky as a teenager. Seriously, there were sparks flying off this woman, horsepower, an energy that said, “I am greater than my problems and stronger than my circumstances.”
Here are Katherine’s three tips to living a long and healthy life:
This free-spirited, indulgent approach is best referred to as joie de vivre or “joy of life,” one of the most common qualities shared by supercentenarians.
Claude Choules, the last surviving World War I veteran, passed away in 2011 at 110. He went swimming in the ocean every day until he was 100.
The oldest human of all time, Jeanne Calment, died in 1997 at 122 years young. Every week of her life, she ate two pounds of chocolate!
And 115 year old Jerelean Talley bowled until she was 104.
These might be some of the oldest humans ever to walk the earth, but they are the embodiment of a young and increasingly popular definition of wellness.
They show us that real, lasting health is rooted in something deeper than the physical body.
They are living proof that aging gracefully is as much an attitude as it is genetics, diet, or exercise.
To anyone who could use a spark from Katherine’s fire, Jeanne’s joie de vivre, and Jerelean’s vitality, I invite you to take a little journey.
Happiness may seem like a long journey with a hard-to-reach destination.
But what if you could take one minute and suddenly TURN UP THE VOLUME on your level of happiness? Literally just one minute can change how you feel in the most wonderful way.
In the days to come, I will share very concrete, quick, and easy ways to create the foundation for healthy living and a deeply fulfilling life without having to make crazy financial or physical sacrifices.
After 20 years of touring and teaching, I have arrived at three guiding principles for life.
These principles have nothing to do with far-fetched diets or expensive workout regiments.
Rather, these principles inspire a state of mind, and a quality of heart amidst the realities we face every day: work, parenting, paying bills, insomnia, anxiety, stress, fear.
These are my three guiding principles:
1. NOW IS ALWAYS THE BEST MOMENT!
We spend our lives waiting for something to happen that will give us permission to be well and happy.
We are waiting to fall in love, waiting to find a better job, waiting to lose weight, waiting to get our certification, waiting to get a promotion, waiting to redo the kitchen, waiting to move into a new home, waiting, waiting, waiting.
Waiting is a state of mind that never ends until that moment when you realize NOW is the best moment!
That does not have to mean that NOW is the happiest moment, but it is indisputably the moment you are most alive!
You do not want to end up in a hospital bed at the end of your life saying, “I wish, I regret, I should have, I could have.”
Life is not real unless it is happening NOW. That is why this is not a self-help course. This is a bust-loose course!
2. WELLNESS IS A STATE OF MIND
Most of us silently repeat negative thoughts to ourselves all day long.
We say things like, “I don’t have enough” or “I am overweight” or “I’m so stressed.”
It’s no wonder we get stressed and frustrated.
Positive thinking works wonders on the mind.
But how do you get there?
If you are looking to be happier, to fulfill your potential, to gain a competitive advantage, to heal mental health issues, herein lies the power of…
Before I say the word that has been associated with the worst kind of boredom, let me just say “it” is like easing your mind into a hot tub on a cold night.
“It” is like the most loving hands massaging your mind after a stressful day.
“It” is … mindfulness.
I equate the feeling of being mindful with eating gnocchi on a black sand beach while getting a foot rub and watching the sunset.
Mindfulness aids sleep, improves immune response, lowers blood pressure, alleviates stress and anxiety, boosts concentration, enhances pain response, lightens depression…the list goes on.
I know SO many people who say, “I want to be mindful, in the future…But not today. It’s too slow for me.”
Why is something with so many benefits so difficult to embrace?
In day 4 of this mini-course, I’m going to make mindfulness fun, and something that you will actually look forward to.
Then I’ll give you a free guided mindfulness session to help get you started…
3. HAPPY IS THE NEW HEALTHY
Psychologist Ed Diener released a study showing that happiness is based on frequency of positive experience, not intensity of positive experience.
Instead of saving all your joy for that triple chocolate cupcake after work, the science shows that you will be happier spreading happiness throughout your day.
A pumpkin spice latte at breakfast, a walk in the sunshine after lunch, some exotic chocolate mid-afternoon, and a little jazz to wind down before heading home to catch a glimpse of that gorgeous crescent moon.
None of these takes more than a few minutes, yet stacked together they can turn an otherwise ordinary day into one for the ages.
Sounds easy enough.
Yet how often do you put your head on the pillow at night and not remember a single moment from your day?
Do you have enough time to spend with your children, to enjoy nature, to listen to music, to read a book?
Do you feel like your life is slipping through your fingertips?
I’m going to teach you how to cut loose the burdens you place on yourself and feel a whole new level of lightness and joy…in just 5 days!
That means in less than a week, you can learn how to be happier without spending a dime, without doing any crazy “woo woo” chants, and without making any elaborate lifestyle changes.
But there’s one small catch…
I need you to cast aside everything you ‘think’ you know about positivity and happiness.
Leave your biases and doubts at the door!
Let me show you why my fun and simple techniques will tilt your perspective toward the positive and give you a damn good reason to celebrate your life NOW!
Join me tomorrow to discover my secret-move…so powerful you’ll instantly RISE ABOVE stress and anxiety and achieve instant lightness and lasting joy.
Think I’m kidding? Come back tomorrow and find out…
PS – I encourage you to do yourself a favor and really commit to going through this week actively.
How often do we tell ourselves: “Yeah, I know I should pay more attention to being happier. I should definitely do something about it…” and then sit back and let the world happen to us?
Make yourself a promise to take an active role in improving your life.
Take one little step every day by reading the emails I’m sending your way.
See you tomorrow for Day 2…