April 17, 2020

5 Simple steps to live a happy life

In the time I was researching wellbeing and happiness, I ran into a simple but super powerful model. This mental strategy can help you pave the way towards your desires and turn dreams into achievable goals. It helped me personally to draft a plan towards developing Amplio Coaching but also to create the wonderful relationship I have. I have extended the model with some Amplio wisdom. This will ensure that you will reach that desired state by applying solid habits. The model I’m referring to can be called the WOOPH model.

What does WOOPH stand for?

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So what is the WOOPH mental strategy exactly? WOOPH stands for WISH, OUTCOME, OBSTACLES, PLAN and most importantly HABITS. By taking yourself through these five letters, you will be able to draft a fairly accurate path towards your WISH. If every step is executed well, you will pave a way towards the life you want. The method has been proven effective in various studies with people of all ages and in many areas of life. Originally the mental strategy is referred to as WOOP (SOURCE), but we believe it is of paramount importance to add the letter H (HABITS) to it. You want to increase the likelihood of following through on this plan. Habits are going to help you there, knowing that 40% of your actions are not conscious decisions but habits. 

The many benefits of the WOOPH model

1. WOOPH has helped people improve their health

WOOPH is highly effective. For example, WOOPH has helped people to be healthier. Participants in health training did twice as much exercise after applying the WOOPH mental strategy. Those participants who applied the WOOPH mental strategy also had a healthier diet. There is a range of examples where the WOOPH mental strategy can have a positive effect on people’s investment in their personal health. This counts for physical as well as mental health. The WOOPH mental strategy can provide you with the energy and path to pursue your goals despite struggling with mental complaints.

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2. WOOPH has helped people regulate their emotions more effectively

But the benefits of applying WOOPH go beyond improving health. People with prejudices became more tolerant and socially responsible after applying the WOOPH mental strategy. Couples have reinforced their bond by applying the WOOPH mental strategy and reducing toxic behaviors like jealousy. Even people who were struggling with their past (trauma, regrets etc.) have used the WOOPH mental strategy to overcome disappointment, regret, anger, and other negative feelings.

3. WOOPH has helped boost students' academic performance

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The WOOPH mental strategy should maybe be taught at elementary school because it can significantly boost the performance of students. There is research regarding students who used the WOOPH mental strategy. After applying it, these students invested more in preparing for exams and improved their time management. With the consequence of better performance in their exams. Even the class attendance rate can be boosted by students applying the WOOPH mental strategy.

By now, I hope to have convinced you of the exclusive value of the WOOPH mental strategy. It is a miracle that this simple technique is not used widely. If you are able to apply the WOOPH mental strategy to the majority of your pursuits, I promise you that you will increase your general happiness. But then you of course need a model to be able to apply it adequately. Let me provide you with the five simple steps of applying the WOOPH mental strategy to your life. In a coaching session, we can apply it to your life together. So the steps are:

1. Wish

5 Simple steps to live a happy life 7 Amplio Coaching In a dimension of life, what do you wish for? What is your goal in the career, relationship or maybe even spiritual life dimension. Let it be a desired wishful state that is challenging, compelling, but realistic. It doesn’t really matter what timeframe  you are able to achieve this in but make sure it motivates you to move. The realistic part is very important. Make your WOOPH mental strategy really realistic. If not, it will result in demotivation, becoming less energized and in the worst-case scenario it can lead you to burnout.
My two personal examples of this step related to the intro are:

  • “Stay in love forever”
  • “Become a millennial coaching authority worldwide”

2. Outcome

5 Simple steps to live a happy life 9 Amplio CoachingThink about what the best outcome would be as a result of accomplishing your wish. And then try to feel really that outcome. How would it make you feel in your day-to-day? How would it contribute to your life? Really try to visualize the outcome and the effect it will have on you as a person and your environment. 
My two personal examples of this step related to the intro are:

  • “Feeling of having a happy and fulfilling relational life”
  • “Feeling of contributing to my favorite generation”

3. Obstacles

5 Simple steps to live a happy life 9 Amplio CoachingTry to sum up all the obstacles that you can imagine that will prevent you from achieving your wish. What is really going to stand in the way from you achieving this desired state? What will impede you from growing towards your wish? Really try to visualize these obstacles in your mind. 

My two personal examples of this step related to the intro are:

  • “Stop communicating with each other”
  • “inconsistent content creation”

4. Plan

5 Simple steps to live a happy life 13 Amplio CoachingIt is important to think of a plan that will mitigate the risk of running into these obstacles. For every obstacle you thought of, try to think of 2 ways how you are going to mitigate and approach this. Think about the action that can help you when the obstacle shows up. For example, you can create an if/then plan and visualize it in your mind.
If _________ (obstacle), then I will __________ (action to overcome obstacle).
The two personal examples of this step related to the intro are:

  • If “stop communicating with each other, then I will “write down all the things that are bothering us together with my partner and have an open non-judgemental discussion with them”
  • If “inconsistent content creation”, then I will “create a plan for the next 6 months to get myself back on track to create content recurringly and consistently” etc

5. Habit

5 Simple steps to live a happy life 15 Amplio CoachingThink about habits that can support you in applying your plan. If you have identified that the obstacle risk can be mitigated by establishing a habit, try to integrate this habit into your life. Follow the Amplio Healthy Habits Setting Process to build an arsenal of habits ensuring your progress towards your wish. 
The two personal examples of this step related to the intro are:

  • An obstacle that I saw for “staying in love forever” was among others that I would “take my partner for granted”. To mitigate the risk of running into this obstacle, we established the habit to do a gratitude moment every day where we express why we are grateful for each other.
  • An obstacle that I saw to “Become a millennial coach authority worldwide” was that while work started to pile up that I would “refrain from enriching myself with the latest research”. To mitigate the risk I would run into this obstacle, I started to study the latest trends every morning between 7 and 8 o’clock.

It would be amazing if the WOOPH mental strategy would enable you to move towards your ideal life. Try to make WOOPH a response to a trigger. What is this trigger? Every time you want to pursue something new in life. In other words, you have a WISH. Let it trigger the WOOPH mental strategy and start paving your way towards your desired state. Practicing is key. Before you know it, you will be one of the success stories of people applying WOOPH. 

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Written by Jasper De Taeye

Jasper is one of the founders of Amplio Coaching. He has been working in tech his entire career and he reconciles his experience working in tech with his personal development knowledge. Jasper is a certified life coaching through the Dublin Business University and a master NLP practitioner studying at the Scottish Centre of NLP.

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