by Gavin Oattes
I have a friend called Andy Cope, and he’s a doctor. An actual doctor. Well, not a regular doctor. But he is a doctor. He’s a doctor of happiness. Yup, fact; he’s the UK’s first ever Doctor of Happiness. He’s not the kind of doctor that tells you that you have the common cold. He’s way more exciting than that. He’s more the kind of doctor who tells you that you have the less common ‘Warm’.
Now, I’m not sure if you’ve heard of the ‘Warm’ before. It’s this thing we all have in-built from birth, but unfortunately many of us forget how to do it. It’s our ability to see good. I don’t mean like 20/20 vision. To be more specific, I mean to see good, in all we experience. Examples include the warm in all people, the warm in Mondays, the warm in work, failure, getting older – all situations. Especially the situation you’re in right now.
Like, right now. And it’s a weird situation that we’re in.
But the ‘Warm’ gives you the ability to turn things around. A day, a relationship, a career, a life. Other people’s lives. Anyone’s life.
And the best bit about the ‘Warm’ is that it’s hugely infectious. It’s catching. It spreads with great ease.
The ‘Warm’ is incredibly easy to diagnose and sufferers tend to spot signs of infection early on. Those closest to you are likely to spot it every bit as quick. In fact, if you’ve been struck by the Warm, it’s highly likely that those around you are experiencing the very same symptoms as you, too.
Among other things these symptoms include smiling, energy, laughter, positivity, the desire to do stuff, fire in your belly, friendliness and the dreaded alternative dance outburst.
So, my mate Andy might not be a doctor in the medical sense, but in some ways we can all be just like him. We can all be a Doctor of Happiness.
If we want to.
It’s essentially a mindset, a choice. You can alternatively wake up every day and choose to see the Cold in everything. Or not.
As a Doctor of Happiness you don’t need to diagnose anyone with the flu. That’s for medical doctors. We could however diagnose the ‘Full’. There are no flu jabs here, but we could all do with a few more shots of the Full.
Not sure if you’re heard of the Full? It’s how you feel when life is good. Full heart, full energy, full relationships, a full cup. But not just a cup half full; full to the top. The brim. The white hot and passionate brim.
I’m definitely not suggesting physical check-ups either. Keep your hands to yourself. Remember, you’re not an actual Doctor. But definitely we should be prescribing massive rockets up the ass.
I’m not sure if you’ve ever had a rocket up the ass. I’m not meaning literally a real one – you’d break. Actually, you’d definitely, 100%, die. We’re talking about a metaphorical rocket, of course. Life-changing at the very worst. As a Doctor of Happiness, you can dish them out.
How do you do this? With love, kindness, positivity, energy, respect, enthusiasm and cuddles. Yeah, you heard: cuddles. Cuddles make the world go round. Don’t even try and deny it. (note: the ability to cuddle may be pandemic-dependent at the time of writing).
Dish out those rockets, people. Rocket cuddles on prescription. Fire them up and point them in all directions.
Rocket cuddles might sound silly, but if you Google ‘How to be Happy’ or ‘What Makes People Happy?’ then you’re going to find millions of pages rammed with of all sorts of weird and wonderful ideas. Some will be perfect for you, some will perhaps be of less help or not particularly up your street and that’s fine. Some will be pure happy-clappy tripe.
You’re definitely not going to find anything about rocket cuddles, but what you will find though across the internet is definite cross-over. There will be a lot of similarities in many of the writings that are out there. Themes will begin to emerge.
Among them themes of simplicity, living in the present, gratitude, kindness, healthy food, sleep, exercise.
Happiness will likely always be treated by most as the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow – the light at the end of the tunnel, an everlasting chase, a kind of Gumball Rally of sorts – a crazy competition among us all; a race.
There’s no chase, and there’s certainly no race. And as soon as everyone realises this the better.
It’s not about how busy we can be or how much money we can make. It’s not about the size of your house or the type of car you drive. No one cares. Literally, we don’t care, and when you die, I can promise that none of this will be discussed at your funeral. People will be too busy discussing what kind of human you were. You’ll either be remembered as one of the good guys, or an arsehole. It’s up to you.
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Gavin Oattes is an award-winning comedian, best-selling children’s author and former Young Entrepreneur of the Year. He is also the managing director of Tree of Knowledge, one of the UK’s most exciting people development organisations. Working with some of the largest companies in the world, Gavin is regarded as one of the most talented and sought after speakers, regularly delivering keynote speeches at conferences and exhibitions around the globe.
Life Will See You Now: Quit Waiting for the Light at the End of the Tunnel and Light That F*cker Up for Yourself by Gavin Oattes, published by Capstone, paperback (272 pages).