The Mental Toughness & Emotional Resilience Report # 2

The Happiness Power of a 'Success List'

"It is only possible to live happily ever after on a day to day basis".

Margaret Bonnano

A success list is a simple way to create more fun, pleasure and enjoyment in your life.

First get a small pocket notebook. Then get into the habit of writing down in this notebook five or more successes that you have each day.

A success is anything you get feel good about yourself when it happens. These successes can be things you do or things that happen to you. The key ingredient is that you felt good about yourself when each success happened.


A success could be something as simple as getting to work on time despite the traffic. It could be someone smiling at you. A success might be getting positive feedback on something you've done. A success could be doing a task you've been putting off, even though you know it does need to be done. A success could be meeting with an interesting person who inspires you. A success might be taking one small action step toward an important goal.

A success does not have to be earth shattering; however it does have to be something that makes you feel good about yourself when it happened.

Here's why a success list can make every day a good day for you:
In a typical day you will have a lot of different experiences. Some of these you will enjoy and some you may not.

Most people usually focus on, talk about and remember the things that happened each day that they didn't like.

We call this, 'looking at the BLACK SPOTS in each day'.

Look below this sentence and what do you see?


If you are like most people you will say, "I see a Black Spot."

This is quite normal. If you see a piece of paper with a black spot on it; your eye is drawn to the black spot.

You tend to ignore the white spaces all around it.

This is like a typical day for most people. The white spaces are all the successes that happened that day that made them feel good about themselves. The black spot is something that happened that they didn't like.

What do most people remember in a day like this?

That's right, the black spot.
We are not saying that black spots don't happen. They do.

We are suggesting you spend a few minutes each day focusing on your successes. Because when you do, you'll feel you've had a good day.

One of the great benefits of having a success list is that you can use it anytime you want to feel a bit more positive. Just pull out your success list and read it for a few minutes.

When you've used a success list for three weeks or more; you will have written down over one hundred successes you've had in this time.

Imagine how good you would feel reading a list like this.

Think of a success list as being a bit like a photograph album filled with photos of some of the happiest moments in your life. Every time you look at the photos, those happy moments and feelings come back.

Action Exercise:

Get yourself a pocket notebook today. Start writing at least five successes you have each day in this notebook.
Take note of how you feel after doing this for a week or two.

Win a Ticket to the October TIME 2009 Convention
This month we have two tickets for the Train, Inspire, Motivate, Empower - TIME Convention on October 30th at the Ellerslie Events Centre.

What are two things Mentally Tough and Emotionally Resilient Optimists do when faced with adversity, so that they can "seize the opportunity" that comes with every danger?

Email your answer and contact details (with "TIME 2009" in the subject field) to The two winners will be notified by email, and their names will be published in the next newsletter.

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We have some more great ideas for you in next month's edition of The Mental Toughness & Emotional Resilience Report.
Until then, have a great month.

Jamie Ford
PS: Next Month's Mental Toughness 2-day course is on November 11 - 12 at the University of Auckland School of Business.
PPS: Book now to hear me speak about your " Motivation & Attitude" at the TIME Convention

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