Baseline, Swing, Recovery

We all have a baseline existence of happiness. For some segments of our lives, “home base” is a being a solid eight out of ten on the happiness scale. Surely, some low points in life could have a generally lower baseline. Call those periods a six out of ten.

Naturally, we deviate from our baseline when adversity happens and incredibly positive things happen, as well. The result is the swing or change in our happiness. For some with a large swing, something like having their car break down can send them in a tail spin. Others with a smaller swing, for example, could swallow having a flat tire with little to no recourse.

Lastly, we all have some general degree of recovery. For some, adversity sticks and recovery is slow. These folks will also have an entire week of smiles driven from a simple compliment on the way to work on a Monday morning. Others with less recovery time, move past good news or bad news much more quickly.

When I came across these concepts that Douglas Stone and Sheila Heen put together in their latest project, “Thanks for the Feedback,” it was cool to see this logical outline of human existence and sway based on our life experiences. Not only was this useful information, it was inspiring to learn that our baseline isn’t fixed.

We can, in fact, alter our baseline, which is good news because one might agree that it may be more valuable to increase one’s baseline level of happiness than simply to cause a swing in happiness. Oddly enough, exercise is one of the few scientifically supported ways to increase one’s baseline level of happiness.

Get in the gym. Upgrade your baseline!


Logan Gelbrich



5/27/15 WOD

1 Hang Snatch

Complete the following for time:

DB Power Clean & Press (50/30)
DB Lunges