Category Archives: Happiness

Examining a Wonderful Life

Call me old school.

I love the movie, It’s a Wonderful Life.

As an adult it is my holiday must see every year.  I own the disc.  I schedule a viewing on my calendar so that it doesn’t get lost in the holiday shuffle.

I am eternally grateful to Frank Capra for bringing Philip Van Doren Stern’s story to life.  It can seem like a simple movie but if you watch it enough (ahem…about 30 plus times like me) there are a whole lot of layers, a whole lot of metaphors, and a bunch of life lessons. Continue reading

Looking for Gratitude

How to Find Gratitude When Your Life is a Trainwreck

 

Gratitude is touted as a key to happiness.  I absolutely unequivocally believe that it is true. But how do you find gratitude when life is off the rails, when it seems like you are taking one step forward and two steps back, or when it feels like there is a grand conspiracy against you?  Life has a way of doing that to us sometimes.

In the wreckage, there is always at least some tiny grain of thankfulness.  If we can find the little tiny grains and store them up for ourselves, before long we have a bushel basket.  The more we have to be grateful for the less imposing our problems look. Continue reading

This is the year you can enjoy the holidays!

How to Remove Stress and Enjoy the Holidays This Year

Let’s enjoy all the holidays this year and not stress out!

Halloween is over and Thanksgiving is just a few weeks away and then the plethora of December holidays will descend upon us.  Already the tireless bombardment from the retail industry has begun.  For many people this all equals stress.  Stress can ruin what should be a joyous occasion.

There are things that can be done to keep that stress at bay. Continue reading

Do Nothing Day: Summer Edition

Do Nothing Day: Summer Edition

Back in December, I posted a little something about how to do nothing.   I wanted to encourage everyone to take a little mental health day after the holidays.  After all the chaos from Thanksgiving til New Years, we need to unwind.

Well, here we are past the half way mark of 2017.  I am realizing that I, along with many of the people I know and love, once again need to schedule a Do Nothing Day.  We have longer days and we are trying to fill them with as much living as we can.  What we call relaxation looks remarkably similar to cramming things into our calendar because we are afraid of missing out. Continue reading

GISHWHES

How to Have Fun and Give Back

 

Philanthropy does not need to be boring.  It can be fun.

I know what you’re thinking.   A rubbery chicken dinner and a basket raffle do not usually a good time make (unless you win the basket and it is full of stuff you really like and would not have purchased for yourself anyway, then all of a sudden it’s a lot more enjoyable).

Would you like to give back and have a little bit of fun along the way?  Would you like to complete the summer having done something a little more epic and make the world a better place at the same time? How about a chance to go on an all-expense paid vacation to somewhere like Hawaii?

I have just the thing. Continue reading

How to take advantage of serendipity

Learn to Embrace the Gift of Serendipity

We regularly have opportunities in our life that show up unplanned.

The best things in my life came as a surprise to me.  My husband, three of my career tracks, some of the friends I have, and some really cool experiences I had never had even thought to want all appeared when I least expected it.

The irony here is that, in general, I don’t like surprises.  I like my goals set, and life well planned and documented in my calendar in advance. As most people who have made it to adulthood know, the universe laughed at this!   I have been thrown a lot of surprises, both good and bad.  The bad helped me find strength and perseverance but the good has brought me so much happiness. Continue reading

Happiness, Joy, Contentment: Now, not later.

Stop Waiting for Joy and Happiness!

Stop waiting for Joy.  Stop waiting for Happiness.

Quit saying, “I’ll be happy when…” or “Things will be good if…”

Stop trying to choreograph it with grand gestures.

All of that just wastes so much of our natural happiness resources! Every time we do that kind of thing we are ignoring the very things, moments, events that we could be reveling in now. And that is sad.

Instead of Waiting…

Continue reading

When will you be successful?

When Are You Successful Enough?

 

What is success?

I did a very scientific poll (facebook, twitter, email, phone calls) and asked people for their definition of success.  Most of the answers were different phrasings on one of my favorite quotes and what I use to define success:

“Success is liking yourself, liking what you do, and liking how you do it. “- Maya Angelou

Continue reading

50 ways to be generous without spending money

Fifty Ways to be Generous Without Spending Money

 

Being generous is the natural side effect of living a happy and fulfilled life.  It is also the antidote for when we feel lost or blue.  It can take our focus off ourselves and make us pay attention to the world around us. It serves both us and the receivers of our generosity. It is empowering.

Many times people equate giving with cash. If you have the means, then go ahead and share but what if you don’t?  While monetary philanthropy is important, it is a narrow way to be generous.  There are many other ways to share with others.

Continue reading