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Pursuit of it All

On Happiness: 15 Things All Happy People Do

Happiness is one of those things you have to work at.

I make choosing joy, looking on the bright side, and appreciating the tiny moments that are often overlooked, a mission.

It’s something I focus on in my daily life. It’s something I write about when I get the chance. It’s something I put on my “to do” list each and every day as a reminder to myself to just be more happy.

It’s what happy people do. And it’s working!

On Happiness: 15 Things All Happy People Do!

That’s not to say that I don’t sometimes get down. That I don’t still have doubt-filled days where I’m swamped with grief-like feelings that make me want to crawl in bed and stay there all day. With a chocolate butler. Delivering me chocolate. And rubbing my back. And telling me I’m pretty. And feeding me chocolate.

That still happens. And, that fantasy, still lives.

But as a whole, I am more positive and joyful and — true or not — I believe that choosing joy has also made more joyful things happen to me. Karmically or something.

Anyway, people want to know how it’s done.

In the face of home chaos, and mean people (you guys, people can be so mean, even when you’re doing something nice for them), and work demands, and kid crazy, and your husband being all, “Ew, tacos again?!” and you then having to doubt him as your soul mate because EVERY DAY IS A TACO DAY — how do you chose joy?

I don’t know. I just do. I tell myself haters gonna hate and choose to not let them or any of it intercept my happiness.

And I have some go to practices that I can always count on to ignite the spark when it gets to crawl-into-bed-and-tear-into-chocolate-now level. Maybe some of them can help you too!

On Happiness: 15 Things All Happy People Do

1. Reminisce.

I love looking at photos. Old ones, super old ones, not so old ones, the ones from summer at the lake. I’m a photographer so it’s no surprise that looking at pictures takes me instantly to my happy place. I think this one can work for any one though.

2. LOL.

For me, that happens when watching Matt Bellassai. I know, he’s not portraying a happy person, but his rants make me lol so much. I find true joy in watching him get drunk and complain about all of the things I have always wanted to complain about. It’s almost therapeutic. And proof that I am not insane, REPLY ALL REALLY IS A WAY FOR PEOPLE TO SAY THEY HATE YOU.

My hotel room in LA is bigger than my entire apartment and also they have croissants

A photo posted by Matt Bellassai (@mattbellassai) on

3. Enjoy good food.

Baking is so my jam. I do it because I love baked goods but also, so do other people! I bake cookies almost daily and it is my way of showing my family I love them.

4. Appreciate material things.

Not to the point of excess. I enjoy shopping which, for me, does not always involved spending money. I just find it fun and relaxing to discover pretty things. Especially artful things created by others who enjoy creating as much as I do.

5. Watch people you love do something they love.

6. Have a passion.

Or passions. Something that excites you no matter when or how or where you’re doing it.

7. Experience human affection and connection.

I am not a huge hugger, but there’s something about a hug of love from someone I care about that just ignites the smiley face.

8. Unplug.

Maybe not entirely, but from the social media element of life. I am big enough to admit that the humble-bragging-over-sharing-vague-booking elements of Facebook are enough to get me down.

9. Dance like no one is watching.

In your kitchen, jammie pants on, with your kid. It can fill an empty heart.

10. Share space with like minded people.

It’s inspiring, regenerative, and just so darn good. (Jen & Liza, I’m talking about you).

11. Indulge.

I just ate an Almond Joy in my bed. That’s what I’m talking about.

12. Be yourself.

For me that usually means blasting ’90s jams in my car. Singing at the top of my lungs and wholeheartedly ignoring my horrified children.

13. Relax.

Bust out the slipper socks. The ugly fuzzy ones that my husband sees and knows to just judge me silently, but say no words and don’t even think about touching me unless it’s in the form of a high five or a fist bump.

14. Move.

I like a hard core, sweat filled, dance inspired workout. But, whatever you do to get your body in motion will have a positive impact on your mood. Even if you are sweaty and tired and achy later. It’s the good kind.

15. Sleep well.

I so need to get better about this one because it makes SUCH a major difference. I have an awesome, furry teacher!

She loves blankets, naps, snacks & cuddles. Clearly we are soulmates. #dogsofinstagram #dogbaby #ilovemydog

A photo posted by Amanda Rodriguez (@thedudemom) on

What brings you joy?

Amanda recently changed her spirit animal from the unicorn to Pegasus; wings are cooler than horns. She enjoys cute shoes, oversized bags, and telling her budget to suck it. Also cupcakes; every day is a cupcake day. Sometimes she does super fun things with her kids, but mostly that's because paying a babysitter would mean buying fewer shoes. She also loves professional football, Stephan Curry, taking amazing pictures of gorgeous people, and getting into dance battles in the grocery store. Wegmans on Tuesday, that's what's up.

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