Sunday, February 27, 2011

The Happiness Project

I am reading a book called "The Happiness Project" by Gretchen Rubin. She also has an accompanying blog.

In it she chronicles a year-long project where she tries to bring more happiness into her life by test-driving the wisdom of the ages, current scientific studies, and lessons from popular culture about how to be happier. This is not to say that she was unhappy in her life.

In it I've found some pearls of wisdom that got me thinking.

Research shows that regularly having fun is a key factor in having a happy life; people who have fun are twenty times as likely to feel happy.

Having fun is one of the things that Charles accused me of. Of always wanting to have fun. As ridiculous as I thought it was when he texted that to me, I think its absolutely absurd now.

Now, I'm not bringing this up to place blame on Charles. I forgive him, I'm not angry at him and even though now I see that we are not a long-term match, there are qualities of his that I will miss very much.

But I believe that when an opportunity is there to have fun, to appreciate the lightness and joy that an activity can bring, that you need to take full advantage of it. Because when you're faced with something heavy and definitely not fun, you're going to need those happy reserves to get you through.

I had my share of non-fun times with Charles. I thought that in order to restore the balance, we needed a lot of catching up to do on fun. At least I did. I don't have control over what he feels or what he does; I can only control me.

I am sorry that we didn't get that chance. He also accused me of wanting to be friends. Again, I don't understand that argument. But I told him, "isn't that where we need to begin?"

So on this gorgeous, 80F, sunny, North Carolina day, I can enjoy the simplicity -- the fun -- of sitting on my porch drinking a beer, watching my dog lounge in the grass as I read my book.

And smile.

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