April 5, 2013
Our “Minnesota-nice” attitudes are wearing a bit thin with this never ending winter weather, but finding happiness in your day is important. I’ve set out to track my happy moments in a daily journal inspired by “The Happiness Project.”
Gretchen Rubin, author of “The Happiness Project,” writes about her adventures in the never-ending pursuit of happiness. Her writings about happiness have now become a global movement, including a blog, multiple books and a wide ranging social media following.
I came across “The Happiness Project: One-Sentence Journal,” a spin-off of “The Happiness Project,” about eight months ago. To me, this was a great way to write down little happy moments in my day without having to commit to full on journal writing. I’m now condensing my happy moments into a sentence or two at the end of the day and am definitely happier for it.
With only a sentence a day, one would think it would be easy to find the happiness, but some days prove to be more difficult than others. On days when you didn’t even take a minute to eat lunch or you are fighting with your significant other, finding the good in your day is another task on your never ending to-do list. It takes some practice, but reflecting on your day and realizing it was another day you still HAD that job or you still HAD someone to come home to, is a happy thought in itself.
“The Happiness Project: One-Sentence Journal” also has daily quotes. I know, I know … inspirational quotes are EVERYWHERE (I’m looking at you Pinterest). Personally I cringe at all the sappy, self-involved quotes this little journal has to offer, but one quote made me stop in my tracks and really made me find the happiness in every day:
The fun part doesn’t come later, now is the fun part.
This quote makes me stop all the crazy thoughts in my head and realize that wishing my day or life away won’t make it better or happier. Stopping to smell the roses, as they say, is truly something that we ALL need to do once in a while.
So if you don’t feel like actively writing down your happy thoughts, Rubin offers a few tips to help you achieve a little bit of happiness in your day.
1) Don’t start with the big life questions. Start with the basics and start small.
2) Fake it till you feel it. If you hate a certain task, pretend you love it and eventually that task won’t be so horrible.
3) Buy some happiness. Don’t go out and buy out DSW when you are feeling blue, but making a smart buy on something that you will actually use to make you happier, will in turn do just that.
4) Take action. Even though genetics do play a role in your ability to be happy, controlling your happiness and taking active steps to recognize it is all in your control.
So in the wake of tragedy, in your crazy busy day or in times when all you want to do is cry, remember that finding at least one happy thought, action or memory will help you find at least one sentence worth of happiness in your day.