What is it that you’re waiting for to make you happy? A new house? A relationship? Children? A better job? Whatever it is, once you get it you’ll probably just find something else to want in order to be happy. The solution? Decide to be happy. We spoke with life coach Sophie Keller, author of a happiness series: How Happy is Your Love Life?, How Happy is Your Marriage?, How Happy is Your Health?, and How Happy is Your Home? Each of her books offer tips and insight into how to be happy— and it starts from the inside out.
BOYT: On your website (www.howhappyis.com) you are called a happiness expert and life coach. We just have to ask: what is a happiness expert and how did you become one?
Sophie Keller: If I explain to you a bit about my journey then you will understand why that is the perfect title for what I do. When I was 14 I hurt my back and shoulder while playing competitive tennis. I was in a lot of pain and found it difficult to sit and stand. I went to a host of medical doctors who said they couldn’t help me and insisted that I would never be better. As a result, I took my healing into my own hands and did Pilates to strengthen the muscles in my back, learned how to meditate, to release stress, did Alexander technique to improve my posture and also went to a therapist to understand why my back—“my support system”—had given up on me. Even then at such a young age I was aware of the mind, body and spirit connection.
Over time my injury started to heal and the combination of different mind and body therapies helped me to peel back masks and armor that I had built up over the years to protect myself emotionally. And as I peeled back the layers and did as many different disciplines and trainings as I could, I became more authentic to who I was and as a result happier and happier. And so I continued on with the self-development, not only for my own benefit, but to become a practitioner in many different mind and body disciplines to create my own unique method that was to become my life work. The more inner work I did, the happier I became—and that is what I know how to do: help others find happiness. That is why I am a Happiness Expert.
BOYT: You’ve written four books about happiness. What inspired you to write them? Can you please give our readers an over view of the series.
Sophie Keller: The four books are How Happy is Your Love Life?,How Happy is Your Marriage?,How Happy is Your Health?, and How Happy is Your Home?
Each book has 50 actionable, happiness-boosting tips with a fun and revealing quiz at the beginning, which will help to direct you to the tips that you need the most.
I was inspired to bring self-help to the front counter in the form of easy-to-read and easy-to-apply, useful tips in a very appealing and colorful package and convenient size. My goal is to be Happiness Expert and life coach to those who can’t afford one and my books are a way in which I can do that. Whether 5 tips help or all 50 make the difference, the more people I can help make more positive choices and become happier in their lives, the better. They are also meant to be gifts that people can happily buy for their friends and family and know that they are going to help those they love by giving them the book. That is why I wanted the books to be priced below $10—so that everyone can afford them.
BOYT: People often have trouble with change. Is it really easy to go from ho-hum or negative to being happy?
Sophie Keller: You need to understand that your thoughts and feelings are like clouds that pass over you. They are not who you are. You have them. So if your thoughts and feelings come and go, what is under that? Under that, there is peace and quiet and in that peace and quiet is where happiness exists. So can you go from negative to happiness? Of course you can, if you can recognize that your negative thought or feeling is passing. Thoughts tend to come before feelings by the way. The negative thought makes you feel negative. So the first step needs to be to let go of your negative thoughts. Become aware of your negative internal chatter; that is always a good start. Because your internal voice will either ply you with negative thoughts or positive thoughts and that will be the first thing that you will want to address and change.
Read the entire interview at the Best of You Today web site: