PMA Professor and expert Dave Doyle is a conduit for happiness. In his TEDx talk, WTFun is The Key to Happiness, he reveals how he was gifted some simple yet valuable universal knowledge — the key to happiness…is happiness.
“Happiness is not something that we should search for,” he explains. “It is not lost. We have it within us. We just need to choose when and how to bring it out. Of course, you can’t be happy one hundred percent of the time. You have to honour and respect all of the emotions. But, choose not to stay in those places. Choose to be happy more than you were yesterday.”
Dave’s simplified wisdom combined with his remarkable empathy connect him with crowds as a playful speaker, with clients as an intuitive coach and Corporate Values Strategist, and with his Pita Pit employees as a trusted mentor. A natural optimist, Dave’s mission is to live every day with a Positive Mental Attitude — PMA — and inspire others to do the same.
During Dave’s self-development journey, he read a book that shifted his perspective on positivity: Napoleon Hill’s Think and Grow Rich. Dave was fascinated and excited to learn that he already possessed one of Hill’s top three principles for success, a Positive Mental Attitude. Immersing himself in the idea, Dave read books, watched documentaries, listened to podcasts, and took courses on positivity, and implemented countless strategies to level up his attitude, aiming to become an expert in PMA.
Even as a teenager, Dave’s upbeat attitude and willingness to listen made him the go-to-guy for advice. Living in a variety of places, from small farming communities like Donnelly and Manning, to medium-sized Dawson Creek, B.C., then urban Calgary, Dave formed an open-minded outlook that helped him better relate to others.
But, growing up, Dave was also different. He dealt with unusual involuntary “habits” like scrunching his nose, making throat sounds and experiencing facial ticks. Confused and frustrated, “I would mentally beat myself up,” he admits. “Why am I so weird? Why can’t I just stop?And I’d be fighting it so hard.”
Later, while watching a talk show, Dave would learn about a disorder called Tourette’s Syndrome. “My jaw dropped and I got the chills,” he confesses. After researching the condition at a local university and confirming with a specialist over the phone, Dave had a diagnosis — and a much clearer understanding of himself. While he admits that having Tourette’s has been one of his biggest challenges, he’s been able to manage it through self-awareness, one of his key strengths. “Every single one of us has an adversity,” he shrugs. “Tourette’s just happens to be mine.”
From the beginning, Dave had an undeniable entrepreneurial spirit, wanting to own a business and work for himself as early as 12 years old. In the over 30 jobs he’s held, from server to salesman to private investigator and beyond, he has consistently trained himself to move up. “I would pay a lot of attention to my supervisors and ask questions. I wanted to manage people.”
In Edmonton, while delivering bundles of newspapers and simultaneously working at a building supply store, Dave stumbled upon a new place to eat within walking distance — Pita Pit. Instantly impressed, he knew he wanted to be a part of it. “It checked all the boxes: healthy, fresh food in a funky, crazy place. It was a healthier option for fast food, when there were none.”
Recognizing it as a “moment of truth when you just know something’s happening,” Dave struck up a conversation with the manager, offering to work for him part-time. Three weeks later, Dave became a full-time manager. A year and a half after learning about Pita Pit, Dave relocated to Grande Prairie to open his own franchise.
Soon after his move up north, Dave would lay eyes on the love of his life, Amanda, at a local bar during the 2002 Olympic men’s hockey gold medal game between Canada and the U.S.A. “It was electric,” he confesses. “I just couldn’t stop looking at her. The energy was palpable.” Lucky for him, the feelings were mutual. “The connection is the same now as it was back then,” he beams. He counts meeting and having a family with Amanda among his greatest victories.
In 2017, he celebrated another triumph — becoming a TEDx speaker. For years, Dave enjoyed watching others share their ideas on the platform but also dreamed of spreading his own wisdom. After watching a live event, Dave decided to apply and was accepted.
He based his speech on the simple knowledge that the key to happiness is happiness, and that we all have the power within ourselves to practice having a Positive Mental Attitude every day. It was well received, paving the way for Dave to become one of three partners in bringing future TEDx events to Grande Prairie.
Dave’s bite-sized bursts of positivity are highlighted in his PMA Two Minute Tips and shared in three Amazon bestsellers he co-authored: Refusing to Quit, Beyond “What If?”, and Journeys to Success: Sales Professional Edition. Dave is also working independently on a short e-book and his first full-length book, both due for release in 2020.
When coaching his clients, Dave uses self-awareness as a starting point.“It’s one of the biggest pieces of any puzzle — understanding who you are. Then, you can understand how you deal with things, how you respond to things, how you respond to other people, and how they respond to you. You can’t understand others if you can’t understand yourself first.”
From there, Dave’s methods vary as much as the people he serves. “I have to understand the person to coach them to what they need, not what I think they need. My intuition, empathy and life experience helps me hone in on that. But, I’m always making sure that’s what the person needs by what they’re saying and doing. I love that feeling of contributing and helping somebody on their path.”
Dave also offers business owners his expertise as a Corporate Values Strategist, helping leaders identify who they are and how to use that within their organizations. “Corporate values need to be based on the people that are running the company,” he asserts, “because an organization starts with people.”
In this work, Dave takes entrepreneurs through an in-depth exercise where they explore their core values and characteristics, as well as purpose, mission and vision statements. He then guides them to understand the difference between them and recognize if it’s what they require in their business culture. Both corporate and private clients alike appreciate Dave’s strength of simplifying ideas. “Not to help them understand better,” Dave clarifies, “but to help them relate better, because sometimes concepts are over-complicated.”
For PMA Professor Dave Doyle, the key to happiness is happiness. In his many roles as a speaker, entrepreneur, coach and Corporate Values Strategist, Dave Doyle exercises exceptional gifts of relating to others and offering them simple wisdom. By choosing to live each day with a positive mindset, Dave inspires others to release negative thinking, embrace personal responsibility, create fulfilling lives, and to be good, do good, always.