Episode 235

Encore - Nataly Kogan - Stop Chasing Perfection and Be Happier Now

Nataly Kogan is the author of "Happier Now: How to Stop Chasing Perfection and Embrace Everyday Moments (Even the Difficult Ones)". She asks us to stop ‘waiting’ for happiness and teaches that true happiness is an ‘inside job.’ If we accept all of our feelings and embrace even our messy emotions, we can change our mindset to be more fulfilled every day.

In this episode:

“On the outside, I married my college sweetheart, I took care of my family, I had a beautiful daughter. On the outside I was blowing all of these happiness bubbles, that should have made me happy. That’s what I thought happiness was.” 

“Happiness is not void of what we call negative emotions. It actually is the process of embracing all of our emotions and giving ourselves permission to experience all of our emotions.”

“Suffering is great sandpaper to happiness.” 

“We are definitely a culture that has created this idea that happiness is somewhere out there, and if only you do certain things the right way, look a certain way...then you’ll get this prize.” 

“Happiness isn’t something you achieve, it’s something you do.” 

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  • Happy bubbles will keep popping. The “I’ll be happy when I get there…” moments are not sustainable and lead to fleeting moments of happiness and are not long term fixes. 
  • Chasing achievements leads to only suffering. You end up running away from yourself to achieve the ‘perfect’ version of yourself. It is an exercise in futility. 
  • In over 11,000 different studies, just cultivating gratitude improves our mood and wellbeing but our health as well.  
  • Gratitude alone is not enough. It is not a bandaid to put on all underlying feelings. Those underlying feelings have to be worked on first and foremost. 
  • Self-compassion increases motivation and propels ambitions from a positive place versus an unrealistic, perfectionist route. 
  • Learn to separate the achievement from your self-worth. You are much more than a list of your achievements or aspirations.  
  • We as people are ‘beings’ and not ‘doings’.  
  • If someone is rude to you, embrace how it makes you feel, write it down. And then practice kindness and compassion. 

Nataly’s 5 Daily Anchors for Happiness 
  1. Acceptance 
  2. Gratitude 
  3. Intentional kindness 
  4. Connecting to your sense of meaning, the bigger ‘why’. 
  5. Self-Care 


Nataly’s book: Happier Now 
Her website: https://www.happier.com/