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“What a wonderful life I’ve had! I only wished I realized it sooner.”

                                                                   —Sidonie Gabrielle Colette

G

          o on, admit it, even those of you who were born on a sunny day have to confess

that life can offer up some inglorious moments ranging from minor, pesky, daily annoyances to deep, dark nights (or seasons) of the soul. No matter how curmudgeonly or naturally cheery one’s disposition may be, at one time or another, we all seem to get our turn.

 

And then there’s the news. Of course we want to be informed of local & world events, but inundated with stories of high unemployment, Iran’s nuclear program, and  contentious politics, not so much.

 

Did you ever notice that we the people often react to the bad more strongly & persistently than the good?  So I figured out if I’m going to be happy, the onus is on me. Horse, meet water.  Instead, why not fixate on what I love as a happiness-enhancing strategy as a way to notice & relish ordinary, everyday experiences?

 

There is infinitely more right with our lives than there is wrong. And I can prove it. Enter the brain child for this blog.

 Here’s how it all began:

Years ago, pre-Facebook, I sent an email to my contacts containing my Love List—a tally of sorts of all the things in life that I loved the most—with an invitation to my friends & family to respond in kind. Since this little exercise turned out to be a happiness-boosting activity—a way to lock into a Happy Place when the going gets tough, I found myself reverting back to it regularly during stressful times for the perspective-shift benefit or psychological time-out it provided.

 

To my surprise, the idea went viral, and I began receiving lists from and forming connections with people I didn’t even know.  Whether they came from women, men, young people, or those of a certain vintage, it seemed as if we all felt as buoyed reading each other’s lists as we did our own. It’s as simple a premise as can be, yet it made people irrationally happy and carried with it an irresistible energy.  But it wasn’t until I noticed it plucking the heartstrings of even the most sarcastic & unsentimental (a.k.a. grumpiest) of my contacts that I suspected I might be onto something.

 

If you’re still a skeptic & anything even remotely Pollyannaish tends to bring out adverse reactions in you, I understand. But try it out for yourself, and see if the corners of your mouth don’t curl upwards just a tiny bit.

 

Essentially, writers observe for a living as much as they write & here’s what I’ve observed: Our grass is greener & our lives are better & more interesting than we may think.

 

So as a way to get more bang for my happiness buck, to tame my amygdala with the calming executive function of my prefrontal cortex, I blog about Simple Pleasures & Everyday Love.

 

Sometimes love jumps out at us, but far more often it waits to be discovered in the simple, the familiar, even the mundane. I’m a fan of bucket lists with once-in-a-lifetime experiences, but what about having a constant, renewable source of things we love in the midst of  challenges, deadlines and daily duties?

 

And I have a sneaking suspicion that if we did nothing else but pursue Simple Pleasures & Everyday Love for the rest of our lives, we would never run out of fresh discoveries.  Join me on the journey.

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It's Happy in Here (TM) (Series) |  How to Be Happy  22 Tips to Everyday Bliss  by Cindy O'Krepki  Published by Words That Live On, LLC © 2013 All Rights Reserved.