A tête-à-tête with the author of The Happiness Quotient, Dr. Rekha ShettyConversations — By Pradnya Shinde on August 3, 2011 at 8:00 AM
Dr. Rekha Shetty is an author, entrepreneur and a thinker. Fondly called as the corporate doctor, Dr. Shetty, exclusively works on innovating tools that can help bring happiness in others lives. She is one off the first women Rotary Governor in Asia and is on the panel of several educational institutions.
Here she talks about her latest book, The Happiness Quotient and much more.
There are many self-help books in the market. What made you write one yourself and what sets it apart from others?
I have been in the field of innovation all my life so it was only natural that I wrote about innovations that could be helpful in our personal lives. The Happiness Quotient is my effort to enable people with innovative tools that would help them bring happiness in their lives. Simple things, which we often take for granted and eventually forget about in our daily struggle, could make a huge difference and bring a lot of happiness in your life. This book is an investment in life’s greatest prize- Happiness.
How did you prepare for the book and how long did it take for the research?
I actually wrote the book seven years ago as a management guide. But after completion, I realised that it would be more impactful if written as a novel with an interesting story. So here it is, in an interesting new avatar! The research wasn’t difficult to do as I have been dealing with the subject for years now.
You say emotional well-being is an inside job. Can you tell us what is the key to well being?
The key to well being is not just emotional health, but also your physical health. To begin with, improving your breathing could make a world of a difference because many people breathe incorrectly. Our body is the boat to cross the sea of life so it is our duty to take good care of it. And just as you can take care of your bodily health, your emotional well being is also in your hands. Very often, we depend on others for our happiness be it our boss, spouse, children or someone else. But we should proactively seek time for ourselves and do things that interest us. Happiness Breaks as I call them, like having a cup of your favourite coffee, reading a book will brighten up your mood and will invariably create a positive field which will help you stay optimistic.
Do you really think a handshake, a friendly look or an encouraging word goes a long way in creating positivity for yourself and others?
Most definitely! Good deeds always show a result. Simple and kind gestures like these do play an important part. Don’t you feel good when someone compliments you? Creating a chain of such positive events will cumulatively brighten up not only your day, but also your spirits.
On those days when we are at our weakest emotionally, how do we train our mind to start again?
Even though the events could be of an earth- shattering nature for you, you need to train yourself to look at the bigger picture. All events are temporary, so naturally, even the dark ones will not last for long. You have to be firm with yourself and let it sink in that you can control the events till a certain point, beyond which, you should let go and rebuild your life.
What suggestion would you give to increase the happiness quotient in our lives?
It is the simple things that work like magic. People today are leading a solitary life even while staying with family and there is no communication between the family members. Do you then think it is surprising to find yourself frustrated? We are ever ready to criticize them but rarely do we spare a word of appreciation for them. Giving each other time, doing things together and appreciating each other builds healthy relationships and healthy people. The book speaks about all this and much more and you can actually use it as guide to find at what level of happiness you are and use the steps given to improve your happiness quotient.
Are you going to be writing another book soon?
Actually I am. My next book is going to be about the innovative secrets of Indian CEOs. I expect it to be out in January 2012.