The Orange Frog | Happiness Advantage
Bringing Happiness Research to Life at Work!
~ Shawn Achor ~
I am told that most academics have a difficult time translating research to people outside of academia, and that the average scientific journal is read by all of seven people. That means a huge gap exists between what we have actually learned about human potential and what most people know. So I have dedicated my life to helping people bridge this gap by making research understandable, practical and useful in our personal and professional lives.
Sometimes I use graphs at Fortune 500 companies depicting how happiness affects the bottom line. Sometimes, like in my TED talk, I use funny stories like my sister falling off a bunk bed. Sometimes I use case studies of outlier organizations.
And, when I want to make research come to life in a workshop, I use an Orange Frog.
In the learning process, I believe narratives are crucial if we want to move from information to transformation.
In that spirit, Spark was born.
About the workshop - Positive Environments Create Engaged Performance.
The Orange Frog is a classroom based experiential workshop that teaches the science of sustainable peak performance.
Positive environments are performance enhancers. They are characterized by higher productivity, less turnover and more resilient cultures and healthier employees.
Applying the latest research-based techniques from the field of positive psychology, individuals learn the practices of resilient leaders; they become more adaptable and develop a capacity to “see” more opportunities, leading to better results.
Workshop participants first learn to embrace the benefits of positive performance; they then share them naturally with co-workers leading to a “rippling” effect inside the organization.
Discovering why Happiness is a Choice
Understanding why positive outliers are critical for success in the new economy Stopping the predictable practices that drive positive outliers underground
Learning why organizations apply the success formula backwards and disengage their employees Learning 5 research-proven tactics for increasing happiness
Learning why increases in happiness create increases in every business and educational outcomes Practicing the use of the “Social Investment Solution”
Learning to apply “20 Second Rule” and “Zorro Circles” to initiate transformation and increase likelihood of success
Identifying new routines which embed happiness into the work environment Discovering why Social Scripts are the hidden secret to happiness and success
Learning to re-write the prevailing social script for a more positive environment for your team Determining how happiness can be leveraged to drive your organization’s strategic agenda Creating an action plan for personal growth
Creating a plan with/for your team to embed principles of positive engagement into existing work routines
The Magic of the Parable
Caught between two worlds, Spark was exactly like every other frog in his pond with one notable exception. Spark emerges from a tadpole with a slight but noticeable orange spot. And this orange spot makes Spark feel uncomfortably diﬀerent. What’s more, Spark begins to make a disconcerting observation; when Spark does things that make him feel better (and produce more positive results) the orange spots increase. Spark is left with a diﬃcult decision; be normal, which makes him less conspicuous, or continue doing those things that make him happier, more productive and… more orange.
So begins the parable of The Orange Frog, a disarming tale that serves as the starting point for The Happiness Advantage | Orange Frog Workshop™. By the end of the story, readers see and feel pressures they recognize in their day-to-day lives. They also witness the most remarkable transformation that takes place when Spark finally chooses to adopt an orange way of life. Not only does his own personal satisfaction and productivity increase, these same results slowly start to ripple out to the other frogs in the pond.
The Orange Frog was written specifically to support this workshop. We know that stories have been used throughout history to carry forward our most important lessons – and there is a reason – they work.
Parables in particular are eﬀective because they force the brain to dual process each idea making it stick in our brain and also allowing us to enjoy the learning process – while withholding judgment.
The Seven Principles
The Happiness Advantage
Because positive brains have a biological advantage over brains that are neutral or negative, this principle teaches us how to retrain our brains to capitalize on positivity so we can improve our productivity and performance. Also provides 5 proven tactics to increase happiness.
The Zorro Circle
Our brains need to record wins in order to feel like our behavior matters – this is especially true in times of change. When challenges loom and we get overwhelmed, our rational brains can get hijacked by emotions. This principle teaches us how to regain control and ensure short term wins by focusing first on small, manageable goals, and then gradually expanding our circle to achieve bigger and bigger ones.
The 20-Second Rule
Sustaining lasting change often feels impossible because our willpower is limited. And when willpower fails, we fall back on our old habits and succumb to the path of least resistance. This principle shows how, by making small energy adjustments, we can reroute the path of least resistance and replace bad habits with good ones and make transition easier to initiate.
The Social Investment Solution
In the midst of challenges and stress, a strong social support network is the greatest predictor of both performance and happiness. Instead of hunkering down and retreating within themselves, the most successful people invest in their friends, peers, and family members to propel themselves forward. Learn how to engage others to ensure mutual success.
How we experience the world, and our ability to succeed within it, constantly changes based on our mindset. This principle teaches us how we can adjust our mindset and embed this powerful practice into our work routines in a way that increases our power to be more fulfilled and more successful.
The Tetris Eﬀect
Also called cognitive afterimage, this principle creates patterns and filters. When our brains get stuck in a pattern that focuses on stress and negativity, we set ourselves up to fail. The Tetris Eﬀect teaches us how to retrain our brains to spot patterns of possibility, so we can see - and seize - opportunity wherever we look. Leverage this principle in work routines to help your team uncover positive solutions amidst chaos and turbulence.
In the midst of defeat, stress and crisis, our brains map diﬀerent paths to help us cope. This principle is about finding the mental path that not only leads us up out of failure or suﬀering, but allows us to be happier and more successful because of it. Successful companies leverage this concept by telling and amplifying stories of triumph and creating legends of hope, optimism and resilience.
This is a game changer
Everyone needs to do this
Valuable and practical way to be happy and work and perform better
Greatest team bonding experience ever
Brings everyone together to perform
Greatest gift this organization has ever given us
Every organization should invest in peoples happiness
I feel more positive with not only my work but my family and life