Charlie Brown says that happiness is two kinds of ice cream. While I fully agree on this presumption, I have been doing a lot of thinking about my own happiness lately.
Many of you know that the transition back to Boston hasn’t been an easy one this year for me. But I’m here so there is no sense in spending my days wishing I was elsewhere.
Each day I make myself list at least 10 things that have made me happy during the day before I fall asleep. Sometimes it’s hard to get to 5 or 6, but I usually find that once I really get thinking about it I lose count because there are so many little things.
The fun part of this is that I am starting to recognize the tiny things that make me happy all day long. For instance, yesterday I was stuck in traffic for no apparent reason. I could have thought “I should have just taken the Mass Pike” but instead I thought “I’m happy because it is a beautiful day, my windows are down, there is good music on the radio, and I am in my very own car.” There were FOUR good things that came out of the ONE not so great thing.
My happiness has a few trends:
1. Random silliness that makes me laugh...like the squirrel I saw prancing around on a roof the other day or the “squeeze left” sign on the highway.
2. Completing tasks. When I finish a report, cook a real dinner, do my reading for class. I always feel accomplished and that makes me happy.
3. Working out. It’s usually the first thing on my happiness list of the day.
4. Connecting with other people…I don’t know why this is such a surprise to me but I find that more than half of the happy things in my day are interactions with family and friends. Catching up with an old friend, or having a good conversation with a classmate always makes its way to my list. I need to make sure I’m doing this on a daily basis because human connection is the main source of happiness in my life.
Happiness is everywhere, you just have to choose to find it.