ERP 400: How To Pivot Away From Creating Unhappiness – To The Path Of More Happiness With Others

By Posted in - Podcast November 28th, 2023 0 Comments

The holiday season traditionally beckons gatherings with loved ones, friends, and family, often involving travel to reunite with those we haven’t seen in a while. While these occasions can be overwhelmingly positive, the nuances of family and relationship dynamics often introduce challenges.

In this episode, we delve into the common tendencies of complaining, comparing, and criticizing, which can disrupt the joyous spirit of gatherings. We delve into insightful strategies to pivot away from these unproductive habits, offering practical solutions for a more positive and enriching experience. By exploring the three P’s—pride, pleasure, and purpose—listeners are guided on a journey toward fostering deeper connections during festive occasions, enhancing the quality of interactions with loved ones, and ultimately cultivating a path to greater happiness.

In this Episode

5:29 The impact of holiday gatherings on our mental tendencies.

9:18 Negative thought patterns and their impact on relationships.

15:52 Applying Gottman’s 5:1 ratio to strengthen connections in every relationship.

23:34 The impact of negative behaviors on relationships.

32:09 Cultivating happiness through connection and purpose.

Unpacking the Three C’s

First, let’s clarify the three C’s to avoid.

1. Comparing

We often find ourselves anticipating comparisons, preparing to evaluate and rank ourselves, and engaging in a subtle-oneup/one-down competition.

Measures of Success:

  • Career Achievements (promotions)
  • Health and Fitness (body weight)
  • Financial Status
  • Attractiveness and Beauty (aging, wrinkles, clothing, hair)
  • Knowledge (current events, politics)
  • Social Engagements (events attended, people met)
  • Fun (recreational activities, trips, etc.)

All these aspects contribute to an individual’s sense of meaning, purpose, and pride. However, when the intention is to impress or compete to feel superior, it can lead to putting oneself above others, inadvertently diminishing their value.

Antidote: Practice expressing appreciation and gratitude for oneself, aiming for a list of 10 appreciations as a countermeasure.

2. Complaining

Expressing challenges is a natural way to seek attention and understanding, often as an attempt to bond with others who can relate to hardships. However, dwelling on difficulties, akin to sharing war stories, provides limited satisfaction in connecting.

Antidote: Counteracting complaints involves identifying at least 10 positive aspects overlooked in the situation, fostering a more optimistic perspective.

3. Criticizing

Judging someone’s behavior, especially in family or friendship dynamics, can stem from underlying longings, needs, or vulnerabilities, with limited potential for change compared to romantic relationships.

Antidote: If change seems unlikely, self-support involves addressing personal needs and longings through alternative means or advocating for oneself, including setting boundaries. Additionally, acknowledging 10 positive qualities or attributes the person brings to your life can help shift the focus away from criticism.

The Negative Effects of the Three C’s

  • Diminished Self-Esteem: Engaging in constant comparison and criticism can lead to feelings of inadequacy, lower self-worth, and diminished self-esteem.
  • Strained Relationships: Continuous criticism and complaining can put strain on relationships, eroding trust, creating tension, and reducing the overall sense of safety and satisfaction.
  • Dissatisfaction in Interactions: The repetitive nature of the 3 C’s can leave interactions feeling less meaningful and satisfying, contributing to a sense of dissatisfaction.
  • Avoidance and Disconnection: Over time, the cumulative effect of the 3 C’s may lead to avoidance of certain individuals or a decrease in engagement, negatively impacting the connection in relationships.
  • Missed Opportunities for Growth: Focusing on the negative aspects may lead to missed opportunities for personal and relational growth, hindering the exploration of positive and enriching experiences.
  • Draining Interactions: Engaging in the 3 C’s can be emotionally draining, both for oneself and others, as the emphasis on negativity outweighs the potential for positive and uplifting interactions.
  • Empowerment and Blame Cycle: The cycle of blame, competition, and one-upmanship perpetuated by the 3 C’s can create a disempowered mindset, hindering the celebration of others and fostering deeper connections.
  • Lack of Meaning and Significance: Constant comparison and criticism may lead to a focus on surface-level attributes, overshadowing the potential for deeper connections and the meaningful aspects of relationships.

The 3 P’s of Happiness

Now that we’ve explored the challenges posed by the three C’s, let’s shift our focus to the transformative power of the three P’s.

The concept of the three P’s — Pride, Purpose, and Pleasure — draws inspiration from Blue Zone research, examining communities globally recognized for longevity and well-being. Here are actionable strategies aligned with the three P’s to foster a balanced and fulfilling life:

1. Pride:

  • Build Community Bonds: Connect with your community, nurturing positive relationships for a heightened sense of belonging and pride.
  • Embrace Traditions: Celebrate cultural or community traditions to strengthen your connection to heritage and foster pride.
  • Achieve Personal Goals: Pursue goals aligned with your values, cultivating a sense of pride and satisfaction.
  • Share Your Successes: Acknowledge and share your accomplishments, reinforcing a positive sense of pride.

2. Purpose:

  • Discover Your Ikigai: Explore your ‘ikigai,’ finding purpose at the intersection of passion, skill, societal need, and earning potential.
  • Volunteer and Give Back: Contribute to causes aligned with your values, experiencing purpose through meaningful engagement.
  • Set Long-Term Goals: Establish enduring goals reflecting your passions and values for a sense of purpose.
  • Reflect on Core Values: Regularly align actions with core values, providing direction and purpose in life.

3. Pleasure:

  • Prioritize Social Bonds: Cultivate meaningful relationships with friends and family, crucial for overall happiness.
  • Opt for Balanced Nutrition: Enjoy a varied, nutritious diet in moderation for physical and mental well-being.
  • Incorporate Physical Activity: Integrate joyful exercises like walking or dancing into daily routines.
  • Practice Mindfulness: Dedicate time to mindfulness practices, enhancing the enjoyment of the present moment.
  • Embrace Nature: Spend time outdoors, connecting with nature for increased pleasure and well-being.
  • Cultivate Hobbies: Engage in passion-driven activities, such as art or gardening, for a more pleasurable life.

By integrating these strategies, you can elevate your overall well-being, embracing the principles of Pride, Purpose, and Pleasure observed in Blue Zone communities.


The Magic Ratio: The Key to Relationship Satisfaction

Blue Zones of Happiness, The: Lessons From the World’s Happiest People (The Blue Zones) (*Amazon affiliate link) (book)

25 Days To Strengthening Your Love Through Kindness (free guide link)

ERP 125: How Kindness Can Strengthen Your Love (podcast episode)

ERP 128: How Kindness Can Strengthen Your Love – Part Two (podcast episode)

ERP 129: How Kindness Can Strengthen Your Love – Part Three (podcast episode)

ERP 130: How Kindness Can Strengthen Your Love – Part Four (podcast episode)

ERP 130: How Kindness Can Strengthen Your Love – Part Five (podcast episode)

Connect with Dr. Jessica Higgins






Twitter: @DrJessHiggins 


Email: [email protected]

About Today’s Show

Let’s get started in today’s episode. As I’m recording this episode, we are in the Holiday Season. Many of us, when we enter into the Holiday Season, we are scheduling time with our loved ones, we are gathering with family and friends, and this can be a very special time in connecting, and can be activating and confronting. Sometimes we will be seeing people we haven’t seen in months, or even over a year or longer, and that can bring up thoughts and mental tendencies that can be unhelpful and can contribute to disconnection and unhappiness. 

I’m going to be focusing on the three C’s. The three C’s are: Comparing, Complaining, and Criticizing. I’m going to talk a little bit about all of these, and how it’s very natural and understandable to go into these habits or these tendencies. I also want to encourage that we are making room, intentional space, to feel more satisfying, meaningful, and positive interactions with others, that we likely will feel more happiness in connecting with the people that matter to us, or who we’re choosing to spend time with in significant ways. 

I got the idea of sharing this with you because my dear friend, who I have been best friends with most of my life, she is a part of the Brave Thinking Institute, which is a coaching company that supports people of certified coaches. When they do workshops, one of the things that they encourage is to be aware and catch these tendencies of complaining, comparing, and criticizing. In that it gets in the way of our learning, it gets in the way of our openness, it blocks our engagement, and we hold back. Or possibly in a position where we think we know, we’re evaluating, or even judging. and this can again limit us from being open and receptive. It has been really interesting when I have participated in any workshop or event, and just to catch. Because I don’t personally identify with engaging in these thought patterns a lot. At the same time, I was able to catch myself; the comparing, perhaps even the complaining or criticizing. It’s almost like they invite a little bit of fasting on these tendencies. So to just be really mindful and watch how habitual it is. And when we look at the National Science Foundation, I think they claim, and there’s various statistics about this, but 80 plus percent of our thoughts are negative, and 95% of our thoughts are repetitive. So there is a strong automatic default mode that if we’re not being intentional or aware, we’re likely to run some version of this. So if we put in some concerted effort, we may be able to make more room for other thoughts and other experiences.

It seems worth noting here the research that comes out of the Gottman Institute, and many of you may be familiar. 

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“They’re seeing in stable, happy relationships, there’s a ratio, and the ratio is five to one. That is, five positive interactions to one negative.”

This research is targeted towards romantic intimate relationship, which is the topic of the Empowered Relationship Podcast. Yet, when we look at these principles, many of them are relational principles that apply to any relationship. And as we’re focusing on just a greater community of family, friends, and loved ones, this is also relevant. Looking at the positive interactions, and that does contribute towards more meaningful, more connected, relating with others. 

Recently, in a session with a client, she was talking about social media and the tendency to compare, and how detrimental this is, and really questioning why do we do this. I talked with her a little bit about evolutionarily, we’re primed to have a negative bias. That is, that we’re wired up for survival, which means that we are going to pay close attention to the areas that we find threatening, hurtful, and harmful, and that we store that information and we have a little bit more of an eye out for those things so that we can mitigate them. But when we have an eye out for them, that means that we’re going to be putting more focus and attention on them. Thus, it’s going to impact our lived experience. Because that is what we’re attending to, and we’re maybe overlooking the things that are more positive or are more of a strength. 

The other thing that we were exploring and discussing was the fact that as humans, we are wired up for belonging, to feel a sense of safety and security with others. So when we are feeling some level of threat or risk to that, then we are going to feel our nervous system activated. Again, the complaining, the criticizing, and comparing likely are in effort of mitigating those challenges. But what can happen, unfortunately, is if we engage in these repetitive tendencies, we can create more unhappiness and actually push people away, and actually put ourselves down and affect our self-esteem. It has many detrimental effects, which I will briefly discuss. But I do think that on some level, we’re intending to anticipate what might be used against us or cause some threat, and try to mitigate it, try to address it, and prepare for it. But then again, this runs the risk of us putting too much emphasis and too much focus, and creating an experience revolving around that, which can be, again, very problematic. 

So part of the invitation here, as we approach the holiday season, and all the various activities, and perhaps demands and stressors, that if we are catching our thought process, catching our inner dialogue, that if we notice the comparing, the complaining, or the criticizing, to perhaps pause. I’m going to give you something to focus on, and perhaps even reverse some of this or counteract it, an antidote to it. So I’ll briefly explain. I know you know, it’s not something that you don’t know. But I’m going to briefly describe each one of these C’s, and then talk about how they can be detrimental, and then what we can do instead. 

So comparing. This may be, again, as we anticipate in an event where we might see people that we haven’t seen in a while, and perhaps we’re preparing ourselves to be compared with, or a form of evaluating or even socially ranking. This comes from that one-up, one-down more competitive mindset. Again, I don’t think we’re intending to be competitive, and yet it’s the world we typically live in, especially in our western culture, that this is so steeped in us. So we may be looking at measures of success, and all of these measures have value in their own right. Yet, when they’re used to put people in a ranking, or one-up, one-down, it can be hurtful and harmful to both ourselves and others. 

So as we imagine going to a gathering, and as we might unconsciously, again, not intending to do this, but we might assess people’s value based on measures of success. Like, what are their career achievements? Have they been promoted, or did they not get promoted? Or perhaps looking at health and fitness. How lean someone is, or how maybe they’ve gained a few pounds? Perhaps their financial status or their sense of net worth. That that’s something we might be able to associate value and ranking and comparison to. Perhaps attractiveness or beauty, or even how one is aging; wrinkles, hair loss, or the quality of hair, and one’s clothing. These are all things that we might, again, unconsciously be tracking and assessing. People often will note social engagements. What are they engaged in? Who are they hanging out with? People they’ve met, events they’ve attended, or perhaps even fun activities, recreational things, trips that they’ve taken. These are things that in their own right are positive and healthy. Yet, when we are comparing ourselves to others, and feeling inadequate, less than, not good enough, as we measure, this can contribute to unhappiness and disconnect. We might withhold. We might not be interested. We might not ask questions. We might not want to know more. Because it’s too confronting, we feel less than. So we’re like, “Uh, I’m not going to go there, I’m not gonna ask more questions.” Perhaps it feels like I don’t want to celebrate you because I feel less than. So that can, as you can see, very quickly breed disconnect. 

There’s a subtle difference here. As I’m describing this, I can recognize that this might feel very nuanced. I think the thing I will encourage you to pay attention to, particularly if you’re comparing yourself to someone else and feeling less than, just to notice that. Also, if you’re feeling the need to impress, or to feel superior, put yourself above others, that this in essence put someone else in the one-down position. So I don’t think there’s anything wrong. Actually, we’re going to be talking about one of the ways to contribute towards happiness that relates to this very specifically, and there’s a difference. So again, paying attention to the comparison, the competition with others, and particularly if we’re putting ourselves in a one-down position. 

So one of the antidotes that people recommend is to perhaps even give appreciation and gratitude to the self. If you notice you’re putting yourself down, or feel inadequate, or you are even anticipating not ranking high or coming out favorably if you’re doing that comparison game, to just hold some value, hold some appreciation and gratitude for yourself, for your traits, for your attributes, for your essence. Anything that you can acknowledge and give value to, and just to feel the significance of that. That can help counteract some of the comparison where you might be showing up or feeling less than. 

Second, complaining. So often in relating with others, we want to seek attention, sympathy, and understanding for things that are challenging. So it can be an easy turn-to to complain. Oftentimes, we can reflect in how this is an easy form of relating, that we might be attempting to bond or connect and relate. Like, we can all relate to hardships and difficulties, and this is where we can think of this subtly of inconveniences or difficulties with travel or technology or what have you. There’s many things that we can chime in and relate. But that only takes us so far, and it can run the risk of it getting into war stories. We almost get competitive about our hardships, and that can run the risk of feeling victimized or this negative focus. That can leave the interactions feeling less satisfying, less meaningful, and really like we’re not accessing what is meaningful. It’s almost as though there’s some vacancy, and we’re missing a large part of the puzzle or a large part of the scenario. 

So people would recommend in this area of complaining to perhaps look at, and this is to not cancel the hardship, it’s to basically say both are true, that there are positive aspects about the situation that we might be overlooking, or perhaps certain opportunities or possibilities that we are neglecting. So as we’re focusing on a challenge or negative, perhaps we can look at either the bigger picture, and look at some of the possibility and positives. Or perhaps we can look at some of the other aspects of our life that we’re not giving focus to. This can be more vulnerable to reveal this to others, and it can lead towards more satisfying and perhaps even happier interactions. 

Okay, the third is criticizing. This is when we are not enjoying or having issue with the way that someone is showing up. Now, I do a lot to support people in intimate relationship, and addressing the critical tendency and the criticism and defensiveness loop that’s happening there. Yet, when we look at friendships and family members, I realized that there’s less likelihood that change is possible. Oftentimes, loved ones, family members, friends may not be as interested or even have the capacity to change. So for us to put a lot of energy into shifting that dynamic may not be realistic. So when we look at a gathering with friends and family and other loved ones, and we are noticing that we’re feeling critical of them, that we might have issue, we might be judging, that that’s understandable. They mean something to us. They perhaps are activating a part of us that we have a desire, a longing, or even a vulnerability with them. This could relate to previous history. This could be just a desire to have attention from them in a particular way, or perhaps be acknowledged or validated. There could be some need here that has been unmet. As I just mentioned, it might be a little bit of a difficulty if they’re not able or willing to shift that. So it does put us in a position where we perhaps are benefited by acknowledging that longing, that need, that vulnerability, and how we might show up for ourselves, support ourselves to get that need met in other ways. Or perhaps even advocate and assert in a way that our loved one, family member, or friend would be more responsive to. 

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“The other thing that I would add here is that we can set some limits and some boundaries. So perhaps we might bow out; we might go to the restroom, we might take a short walk, we might go to another side of the room or engage in a different activity. That we can give ourselves some choice around how we’re engaging, when we engage, what we’re available to and what we’re interested in participating in.”

One of the antidotes that’s recommended in addressing criticizing others, in more of this general fashion, can be to recognize the value and the positive qualities and attributes that that person brings to your life. There’s a reason why you’re still connected. It might just be that I want my children to have contact with this family member. Or there might be some other valid reasons that this brings goodness, and I can appreciate these qualities in relationship. Even though it’s limited, I still want to have this relationship because of these other attributes. It’s challenging and complicated to hold both, but perhaps both are true. And if you can be intentional and aware and mindful to take care of yourself, then you’re not feeling as victim to some of the disconnect and discontent. 

So I’ve addressed here the common tendencies around complaining, comparing, and criticizing, and what’s happening there, and really recognizing and talking a little bit with you about how this doesn’t typically lead towards meaningful, satisfying connection with others. In fact, it can block that deeper relating. 

Some of the other negative effects which I’m not going to spend a tonne of time on, but just can be helpful to recognize. 

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“As we talked about with the comparison and putting ourselves in a diminished state of self-worth compared to others, that can have a negative effect on our self-esteem. Some of the comparisons and criticisms can put strain on relationship. It can be felt, and it can lead towards just trust and erode at that sense of safety, and create more tension in relationship.”

As I mentioned several times, that we can leave interactions feeling a sense of dissatisfaction. So it can diminish the quality of connecting and the reduced sense of satisfaction in the relating with that particular person. We might find ourselves avoiding, and it can have that impact on the connection long-term. If we look at the cumulative effect of this, if we look at long-term relationships, if we tend to avoid and notice that we’re not as inclined to focus on someone or engage with them, that relationship likely isn’t going to be nurtured, and it will be a detriment to the relationship. Sometimes when we’re a little bit more in the negative space, people find that challenging, and will tend to avoid. Again, not intentionally trying to reject, but it just is kind of human nature that we focus on the things that feel good, and maybe not as much on the things that feel perpetually difficult and hard, even with good effort and intention. So just to be mindful of the impact that some of these behaviors and processes might have on others, and that it could be draining. 

Then we’re also perhaps missing opportunities for growth. Focusing on some of the positives, as I mentioned, and how we might be able to take care of ourselves, or perhaps appreciate others. It gets us in a disempowered place, where it’s a cycle of blame, competition, one-up, one-down, rather than really celebrating others and looking for meaning and significance, and having this deeper way of relating that brings more connection and satisfaction. 

As I was thinking about this episode and the three C’s, and how if we catch that, that we can make more room and space for connecting. It occurred to me, and I think I’ve mentioned this research in previous podcasts a while ago, I think it was like a side note or an example to what was being discussed. It had a big impact. My husband and I read The Blue Zones of Happiness: Lessons from the World’s Happiest People, the book by Dan Buettner. The book was written several years ago, and it’s based on the Blue Zones research looking at these centenarians, and what contributes to longevity and health. As one might imagine, that the happiness correlated with the health. He focused on three areas of the world. One was Singapore, in that he claimed, based on their research, that Singapore is the happiest country in Asia. And that they optimize the kind of happiness that comes from life satisfaction, and that people are very clear and cognizant of the path to success, and they don’t mind working hard. So there’s a priority for this sense of pride and the security, and that they’re living in accordance with that. So as he focused on that culture in Singapore, the emphasis was on the pride. 

So there’s three P’s that come from this research, and the book is largely focused on these three P’s. It’s Pride, Pleasure, and Purpose. Pleasure came from Costa Rica, and largely the focus in Costa Rica, in that, based on their research, there’s a feeling of equality, people have their basic needs covered, and that there’s a huge emphasis on social engagement, social interaction. And that there’s a large portion of the day, I don’t know if it was six hours a day, but it was something very significant that people socialize, that they are in community, they’re in connection with others, and that this is a huge part of life and living, and that contributes to a sense of happiness and connection. For purpose, he looked at Denmark and the culture there, and that people live with the sense of purpose. There isn’t an emphasis on Keeping Up with the Joneses. They have their healthcare, social security, education is covered, and that they are really focused on what brings meaning and how they can contribute in valuable, meaningful ways. So this is how to make a difference, how to give back, how to cultivate attributes in themselves and pursue passions and strengths, and develop careers that they love. This contributes significantly to the well-being and happiness research that they are looking at. 

In using this research, the three P’s: the Pride, Pleasure, and Purpose, that we can incorporate this into our focus, as we are attending gatherings, as we are relating to others. That perhaps this can guide us, and at least even hold within ourselves this focus, and maybe even explicitly ask people about it or even share some of the things that bring pride, pleasure, and purpose in our lives. 

So as you look at pride, some of the things to perhaps think about within your own life, what am I proud of? Whether or not it’s your efforts, or accomplishments, or focus? This is your personal pursuits and things that align with your values, that bring you a sense of satisfaction. It could also be sharing with loved ones about either your personal achievements, or perhaps someone you love and their achievements, and being in the collaborative, celebratory goodwill of acknowledging someone else’s sense of achievement and accomplishment. 

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“Another way to cultivate more pride is investing in traditions, embracing family, community traditions and rituals that foster that sense of pride and heritage and culture and family.”

Those are just a couple ideas. There’s many, many more. 

As we look at the value of pleasure, what brings joy, where we feel fulfilment, where we feel enriched? It can be helpful to reflect on that and focus on that. This can be prioritizing social connections. This isn’t about attending an event and showing up. This is about engaging in a way that feels really meaningful, and present and engaged, and contributes to that sense of happiness. I don’t know if you I’m sure can reflect on times where you’ve had an enriching, nourishing interaction with someone, and you left that experience feeling uplifted. That’s the type of quality that we’re looking at. So thinking about what contributes to that type of relating and interacting? Did you go deeper? Did you share something a little bit more revealing, maybe even vulnerable or meaningful, that allowed people to see you and connect with you? Did it feel safer? Was there more laughter? Was there more creativity? Was there more joy? Were you getting outside of the norms a little bit, perhaps doing something that you normally don’t do, that can feel really novel and exciting and fun, in not any risky way, but just getting outside of the routines and habits? Again, this is twofold. I just mentioned the value of tradition, which can feel like a sense of norm. And also, when we bring in creativity, that can add a level of play of newness and excitement that otherwise perhaps wouldn’t have been accessed. So again, this is personal for every person to reflect on what brings pleasure. 

Also, the happiness research looks at nutrition. So really focusing on the variety of foods, whole foods that support mental and physical well-being. This can be really helpful in Holiday Season. Perhaps even just noticing what you’re eating and consuming, and perhaps what you’re contributing to, that this does impact our sense of happiness. How we feel after we eat certain foods, that can be helpful to remember. Even the physical activity, and staying engaged in ways that bring more movement and exercise and perhaps bring a sense of joy. If you enjoy dancing or doing a sport or stretching or movement or yoga, or even the winter sports, skiing, snowboarding, those type of things. 

A couple other notes that people feel pleasure in is giving room and space for relaxation, and just being. Whether or not it’s something that’s intentionally a little bit more meditative. Or perhaps it’s taking a hot bath, or snuggling up and watching the snowfall, or just having a hot cup of tea or some other hot beverage and just being with the people that you love or whomever you’re relating to. Then lastly, I’ll just mention nature. Being outside, spending time outdoors in natural environments is related to increasing pleasure and a sense of well-being that comes from the research. So these are all ways that people feel more pleasure. 

Lastly, as we look at purpose, this can be important to reflect on as you enter into these interactions or gatherings with others. What is bringing you a sense of purpose? I know many years ago, there was, in the business world and knowing self-development, about Know Your Why. Why you do what you do? What’s the purpose? What’s the real significance? What does it allow you to feel and experience in your life? Also, another way to get at purpose is looking at your values; your core values, what matters most to you, and aligning your actions with your values. That can create a sense of purpose and direction. As well as really looking at your goals, your long-term goals, and that your passion and what you love and your values is in alignment with what you’re focused on in your pursuits. 

Other ways that people cultivate more purpose, from the research, they were coining the phrase, Discover Your Ikigai. This comes from the Japanese concept that represents the intersection between what you love, what you’re good at, what the world means, and what you can be paid for. So this gives you more of your Ikigai. Again, you can learn more about that from the book or even exploring that concept. 

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“Really, looking at the intersection of what you have to give, what is valued and needed in the world, and how you can be compensated. That’s essentially a win-win-win-win. This does give a sense of purpose and meaning.”

Lastly, sometimes people have in their tradition or their holiday activities is to be volunteering or giving back, and contributing to greater causes, larger causes. That you can feel a sense of goodness in contributing in a meaningful way, offering value, making a difference, and again, giving back. This can feel enriching in the way of having more purpose that contributes to more happiness and fulfillment. 

So my invitation to you is, as you move through the next season here of the holidays, and where your focus, where your attention and your energy is, as you’re relating to others, if perhaps you can catch yourself engaging in one of these three C’s: the Complaining, the Comparing, the Criticizing. Perhaps, either use some of the antidotes that I mentioned, and/or really focus on putting more attention on the three P’s: Pride, Pleasure, and Purpose. I would love to hear from you. If you want to share with me your three P’s, I would love to hear that. I so appreciate your spending this time with me contemplating, up-leveling the value and the quality of your interactions with others. 

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“It is definitely a win-win-win. As we increase the quality of the connections with others, we are increased as well.”

Signing Off

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Shifting Criticism For Connected Communication

Shifting Criticism For Connected Communication.

Stop the criticism loop, learn new ways to communicate
and strengthen the connection with your partner.


Dr. Jessica Higgins ~ Relationship and Transformational Coaching