This weekend, I played my first ever live chess tournament. Two days, eighty-eight players, from eight countries - twenty of whom - professionals.
Results? Let’s comfortably ignore the chess results for now, but I did feel like I ran two back-to-back marathons (chess players can burn up to 6 000 calories a day by playing tournaments), and I won one game in a spectacular fashion.
During the game, my heart rate was constantly at 110 - 160bpm (I have a Withings watch), peaking after I blundered a pawn, and ended up in a very poor position.
Pushed to the wall, I did what many animals would - a full-out attack, disregarding any concern for safety. Two sacrificed pieces later, his pawn one move away from turning into a queen and mating my King - I created a position so complex and so dangerous for my opponent that he lost on time and I, too, was one move away from delivering mate.
Exhilarated, happy, proud, I ran out of the hall to find my friends - bumping my fists into the air, screaming “#$@% YEAH!”, with tears nearing the nasolacrimal ducts - the emotion was unlike anything I have ever experienced in chess, and I fell in love with the game once more.
More interestingly, I have discovered something - My Happiness Loop, and I want to ask you to find yours.
💡 Insight Of The Week - The Happiness Loop
See, when I won the game, the peak happiness arrived at a somewhat surprising moment - not during the game, not even immediately after - but at the moment I reached my friends and shared my victory with them.
This made me think - what makes me happy the most? What is the actual process?
To figure it out, I made a list of my happy memories, which included: Proposing to my lovely and most caring wife in the world - Valerie, bringing the first Arctic15 to a close, seeing a mentee win Slush, etc.
In all of the instances, it was sharing the moment with others that made me most happy. This means, that my peak happiness follows this loop:
Dmitri Creates An Idea In His Mind → Dmitri Works On The Idea → Dmitri Brings Said Idea To Life → Dmitri Shares Results With Others → Dmitri Receives Positive Feedback → Dmitri Achieves Peak Happiness.
For short “Have An Idea → Bring It To Life → Receive Feedback”. Having asked a few others, I realized that the Happiness Loop is unique to every individual. Some - love solving problems. Others, do not need any feedback or pats on the back. Yet others - do not even need to do anything and simply must get rid of all distractions.
Your loop is yours, but do you know what it is? Knowing mine will guide me towards organizing my life in a way, where I can experience it more often.
⚡ The Action
Come up with as many moments in your life when you were at peak happiness and satisfaction.
Look for the commonalities in your happy moments. At which moment were you happy the most?
Create a visual loop, which you can recite and remember.
As a bonus, try to see if you can re-create this loop during the course of the week.
Finally, I would like to remind you that reading this newsletter, and not doing any of the actions is cheating. You are not cheating me, but yourself. So, do it.