40 Ways to be Happy

I recently overheard a conversation about the apparent sorry state of the world.  According to one lunch counter philosopher life is unfair, there is nothing good on TV, every politician in the local/state/national government is a greasy palmed crook, and people in general are just no %#$@! good.

You know the kind of conversation I mean.

Fortunately, I don’t buy all that.  Granted, I gripe about politics, though I know some very sincere politicians.  Sometimes there doesn’t seem to be anything I particularly want to watch on TV, but I know where the ON/OFF switch is, and I can read.

In other words, short of living in the wild west at the turn of the century (OK, I’m a romantic) I wouldn’t trade my life for anyone else’s, even in these days (whatever “these days” means).  And I think I may have a cure for those folks who really want a more positive outlook on life.  I call it:


1. Splash in a mud puddle.

2. Learn to play a harmonica.

3. Run over an accordion with a truck.

4. Send your husband/wife/boyfriend/girlfriend flowers for no reason at all.

5. Sing – and sing loud – whether you can carry a tune or not.

6. Take a class in something you are interested in, just because you want to.

7. Rent a copy of you child’s (or your) favorite cartoon DVD, pop some popcorn, and have a ball.

8. Take some time for yourself and just listen to some good music.  (Good = whatever you like).

9. Walk in the rain.  (Goes great with #1).

10. Watch a Marx Brothers movie.

11. Call a friend you haven’t talked to in a long time just to say hello. (E-mail doesn’t count).

12. Pick some wildflowers for yourself.

13. Run over a set of bagpipes with a truck.

14. Write a love letter to that “someone special.” (If you’re married, your spouse would be an excellent choice)

15. Spend some time with the folks you love; do something they would like to do.

16. Leave the toilet seat down.

17. Don’t sweat the small stuff.

18. Remember: next to nuclear war and Jesus coming back, it’s all small stuff.

19. Read a romance, adventure, action, thriller, spooky, or science fiction book just for the fun of it.

20. Color in a coloring book.

21. Leave the toilet seat up.

22. Go to the library.

23. Watch a group of children at play.

24. Scratch a puppy behind the ears.

25. Buy a goldfish.

26. Join a club.

27. Find something to believe in.

28. Hug somebody every day.

29. Fingerpaint.

30. Watch a sunrise.

31. Watch a sunset.

32. Make a batch of cookies for a neighbor.

33. Close the door, put on your favorite record/CD/MP3, and dance like a maniac.

34. Count your blessings and thank God for them.

35. Order a peanut butter and jelly pizza just to see what happens.

36. Pay for a stranger’s meal at a restaurant and make sure they don’t know who did it. Have the waiter/waitress write “someone you’ve never met just wanted to do something nice for you. Have a nice day” on the check.

37. Blow some bubbles.

38. Skip rocks down at the local pond or lake.

39. Buy a paddle ball (you know … one of those balls attached to a paddle with a rubber band) and try to get to one hundred whacks without missing or putting your eye out.

40. Tape the postage paid reply card from a piece of junk to a brick and send it back to the company. You won’t be on the mailing list very long.


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