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How to Harness Your Bounce: 9 Steps for Avoiding the Tigger Method of Finding Happiness

How to Harness Your Bounce: 9 Steps for Avoiding the Tigger Method of Finding Happiness
Image by efleming (license).

I used to be very Tigger-like. I’d get a new idea in my head and it would be the answer to all my ills and BOING! off I’d bounce – until I realized that I really didn’t like the idea at all. So, I’d get a new idea into my head and declare to the whole world: “This is what makes me happy!” until I’d figure out that no, that wasn’t it either.

Like many people I would apply a trial and error method to finding happiness. I never took the time to figure out what would make happy and I ended up wasting a lot of time and energy as well as delaying happiness.

For those who don’t know Tigger, in Chapter Two of the House at Pooh Corner, he arrives in the Hundred Acre Woods. He’s a bouncy fellow, declaring loudly that when it comes to food he likes everything, that is until he starts tasting things and realizes that in actual fact, he likes very few things. Fortunately he figures it out before lunch time.

Many times, trial and error is a perfectly good method – it allows for a wide variety of experiences, and if you learn from each trial, the errors will get fewer and fewer until you’ve found what really makes you happy.

But what if you never do? What if you spend your whole life going from the last error to the next trial? Wouldn’t it be better to harness the energy and enthusiasm in a way that brings happiness to your life sooner?

Here are nine steps you can take to do just that:

  1. Stop bouncing about. Many people dash around (literally and figuratively) because they don’t want to face what they’d see if they were to slow down. If you’re bouncing from one action, thought or emotion to the next, you can’t really know what’s going on inside and what you really want.
  2. Extract happinesses from your past. Now that you’ve calm the bounce, look back at all the things you’ve done in your life, professionally and personally. Look for the things that made you the most happy. Make note of them.
  3. Find a pattern. When you look at the list, do you notice any similarities? Sometimes a pattern is obvious, but sometimes, it’s subtle. Really examine your past happinesses and try to find common themes that run through them.
  4. Get advice from others. Yes, many people will tell you what would make them happy or what they think would make you happy based on potentially unreal expectations. At the same time, however, the people closest to you might notice things about yourself that you’ve kept hidden. They’re not inside your head, so they might be able to suggest some ways of finding happiness that you’ve never thought about. This is why coaching is such a growing industry.
  5. Brainstorm some wild ideas. Now that you have a calm foundation, it’s time to let the bounce free. Get a white board, a large piece of paper – anything that’s not a normal sized paper or computer screen – and brainstorm. Come up with wild ideas that you’d never ever do, but would thrill you to follow through on.
  6. Make a list. Go back through your three types of ideas-gathering (mining the past, advice, and brainstorming) and make a single list of all the possible ways that you could find happiness. This might seem like drudgery; it’s the least bouncy part of the process, especially if an idea from one of the sessions has your feet itchy to start bouncing off in pursuit. But resist the bounce. This step is very important if you’re going to avoid another series of fruitless trials and errors.
  7. Mentally try out each idea. Don’t get too detailed with picturing pursuing each idea as you don’t want to fall in love with every possibility, but imagine yourself during the process of achieving the dream and in succeeding. Especially take note of the emotions each idea provokes.
  8. Pick the one that scares you the most. Seriously. Know that thing that makes you shiver? That thing that makes you want to run away and be as scared as Piglet with a woozle? That’s your happiness. It scares you because it challenges you to succeed and to make big changes in your life and change is always a scary thing.
  9. Turn on the bounce and off you go! Now’s the time to set your energy loose. You have a good idea of what will make you happy and you’ve found it without wasting any energy or time. And instead of running away from the fear, embrace it and let it power your bounces so that you go higher, farther and faster towards your dream.

Alex Fayle, of Someday Syndrome, is a former procrastinator who uses his visionary ability to uncover hidden patterns and help people break the procrastination obstacle so they can finally find freedom and start living the life they desire.

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  • Melissa December 29, 2008, 4:07 pm

    I love the Tigger analogy! That is just too cute and too appropriate. I have bounced quite a bit in my life, but I finally realized what I was doing. Now I take a good bit of time to evaluate any major to medium changes and then stick to them for at least three months. Sometimes I think we just give up too quickly on our own happiness. We’re an instant gratification generation and we don’t always recognize that life is cyclical in nature.

    As I plan for 2009, I am being very selective about my resolutions because I will make myself stick to them so they better be good!!!

  • Virginia Ginsburg December 29, 2008, 4:42 pm

    You have described me perfectly – I never realized my “Tigger Tendencies,” but thank you for putting together some firm strategies for managing them. Your ideas couldn’t have come at a better time!

  • Shanel Yang December 29, 2008, 6:24 pm

    Picking the one that scares you the most is exactly right! The thing that scares us the most is the thing that we want the most and so are we are most afraid of not getting it even if we really try to for it. As long as we don’t take any serious steps in that direction, we can always soothe our desires (and fears) by saying we can still have that … later … when we finally go for it. And, so we can hang onto that dream a little longer … though we never get any closer to it. The cure for this is to not push it forever into the future but to work really hard for it. Because what we should know is that all we need to succeed is to really, really, really want to succeed and then put every ounce of our being into it. That means work! A lot of work. The most work we ever did in our lives! But, isn’t it worth it for your really big dream? It is for me — and I absolutely love every minute of it! It doesn’t feel like work at all. And, that’s how I’m able to do it so long and so hard. And, you can, too! Scary? Yes! Rewarding? You have no idea how great it can be till you try it! Terrific post, Alex!

  • Katybeth December 30, 2008, 6:11 am

    I have always loved Tiger–he loved to bounce. I love to bounce…and let’s face it, if you are interested in social media, you will bounce. I’m a very happy bouncer but like tiger my bouncing sometimes, cause’s problems for the slower moving Pooh’s in my life, the more careful Rabbit’s, my bouncing certainly does not help make the piglets in my life more secure,and of-course bouncing often make my Egore husband dizzy. So I will consider bouncing with more moderation in the New Year, for the sake and relief of my love one’s.

    Happy New Year!

  • Vincent December 31, 2008, 6:54 pm

    Hi Alex,

    I love point number 8. By picking things that we fear most and tackle it, we are bound to receive something that is tremendous in value.

    Cheers
    Vincent
    Personal Development Blogger

  • Alex Fayle | Someday Syndrome January 7, 2009, 5:02 pm

    Thanks everyone for the great support. I come from a long line of Tiggers, so it took a while to figure out how to harness the energy – I’m glad my sharing has inspired you too!