Friday, April 09, 2010

Finding the Happy

Happiness makes up in height for what it lacks in length. ~Robert Frost

I was talking to my mom yesterday and we both agreed that we tend to focus more on the bad stuff than the good stuff -- which leads to a pretty stressful life. The bad stuff is easier to see, I think. It's loud and active and it jumps up and down in front of the good stuff, waving its hands and shouting, "Look at me! Look at me!". It's tough to move it aside and see what sits quietly behind it, smiling and peaceful.

Many years ago, I was part of a women's group. We got together once every other week, shared our lives, supported each other and talked about how to have a happier and more stress-free life. I miss that group...

In any case, one of the things we did was use the book, "Woman's Comfort Book" and work our way through. Some of the stuff in there was a little ... odd or "woo woo", but one of the things that we had to do that really stuck with me was creating a "comfort journal" of things that made us feel good, made us smile, made us happy. And it wasn't only a few things. We had to list at least 100 things, so we'd have something to refer to in the times we were down to remind us what really mattered.

I remember starting it, thinking, "This will be a breeze!"

Uh. Not.

The first ten or twenty were ... then I had to really stretch for the next twenty or so. By the time I hit around fifty, I was empty. I'd spend my days thinking and watching and contemplating, trying desperately to find more things that at the very least made the sides of my mouth quirk in a smile, however briefly.

I never did make it up to 100. But I got darn close. And, looking back on that list today, many of those things don't apply (For instance, I was dating someone who is not my husband, so ... having him make me happy is probably one to line through), and I decided that I need to make an updated list. And, I imagine I'll breeze through the first twenty or so, struggle with another twenty and then will have to really, really look for the rest. But it'll be worth it to have something to focus on besides the negative.

Because there's no pain in looking for the happy things in life, right?

What about you? Could you make a list of 100 things that make you happy? Don't you think you should?


You Are Conscientiousness

You are extremely detail oriented and organized. You do a thorough job.

You stick with whatever needs to be done, no matter how long it takes.

You are highly motivated and energetic. You are a valuable employee and a trusted friend.

You are a planner, and you follow through with your promises. You take your commitments seriously.

Yeah... that's about right.



Dru said...

That sounds like a good thing to do. I do try to live a stress-free life but sometimes you have no control over outside forces.

You Are Agreeableness

You are an unselfish and considerate person. You don't easily find fault with others.

You are helpful and polite. You forgive and forget. You try your best not to start drama.

You are warm and welcoming. You are truly happy to see people, and you're willing to give almost anyone a fresh start.

You like to cooperate, even if it requires a little give and take. You have a low threshold for drama.

It's accurate.

Have a good Friday.

groovyoldlady said...

Oh I could come up with 100 easily...just as soon as I'm off these meds which shade everything into varying degrees of GREY.

Brandy said...

I think most people would relate to looking at the negative. It's harder to see the positive and we take a lot of little good things for granted. As for the list? I could maybe do 50 and then would have serious trouble. *g*

I hope you're having a wonderful Friday!

MamaMonki said...

That sounds like a really good thing to do. I think I would struggle after 20 too. I may even copy the idea and have my fourth graders try to come up with their own list as the school year winds down. Thanks for sharing.

Tori Lennox said...

I think it would be really hard to come up with a 100 things that make me happy.