5 Ways to Celebrate Happiness Happens Month at Work


Almost 20 years ago, the Secret Society of Happy People (yup, that’s a thing) declared August as Happiness Happens Month. Each year the Secret Society of Happy People (SSHP) chooses a theme, and this year’s theme is Be the Reason Someone Smiles.

According to SSHP, there are many studies to back up the benefits of smiling, including:

  • Smiling reduces pain. A study found that people who smiled while getting an injection felt 40% less pain those who did not smile (Science Links).
  • Smiling is linked to reduced stress, increased levels of all those feel-good neurotransmitters like dopamine, endorphins, and serotonin, and lowers your heart rate and blood pressure (Psychology Today).
  • People who smile are more successful at work. Although we smile less at work, people who smile are more likely to receive job promotions, earn a higher income, and experience better productivity at work.  (Forbes).

Although we’re halfway through the month of August (not sure how that happened!), it’s not too late to incorporate the holiday into your employee recognition and engagement programs. Here’s a few ideas to get you started.

5 Ideas for Celebrating Happiness Happens Month at Work

1.  Encourage employees to kudos each other on LinkedIn.
Many companies have recognition programs where employees can acknowledge each other for a job well done. Take it a step further and have them post an acknowledgement on LinkedIn. Having your employee publicly kudos each other on LinkedIn can help build comradery, boost confidence, and show others the friendly culture of your company.

2.  High five a coworker in the hallway.
I recently went on vacation in Myrtle Beach, and every night the residents and visitors hopped in their golf carts and went cruising around the resort, high fiving each other. It was the simplest activity, and yet you couldn’t help but smile every time you got a high five.

3.  Host a food drive or organize a volunteer event.
Bring happiness to other while making your employees feel good – collect donations for a local charity or organize a day where your employee can volunteer and give back to their community.

4.  Organize lunch time walks.
Exercise has shown to improve focus, attention, productivity, energy, and mood. Encourage employees to take a quick lunch-time or afternoon walk. Sometimes a short break from the daily grind is all that’s needed to re-focus the day.

5.  Roll out an employee engagement program.
Don’t have a centralized employee engagement program? There’s no better time than Happiness Happens month to roll one out. Make employee engagement a priority in your company by rewarding employees for helping promote and improve the company – all while having fun, of course.

How is your company celebrating Happiness Happens Month? We’d love to hear about it!

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