I was so excited to hear from my Laughter Yoga teacher friend Peggy Tileston, that this Wednesday is a newly minted holiday. It’s one that I would love to have honored 365 days a year and really it could be with a flip of a switch in our minds. How much time do we waste obsessing over what could go wrong, kvetching and complaining about our lot in life, when we could easily be dancing with abandon? While I know that there are people struggling and suffering all throughout the world, I know equally as powerful is the call to experience the emotion of happiness in the midst of it. In February of 2011, a movie debuted and was shown in theaters on Valentine’s weekened (2/11/11) all over the world just for that one day. It is called Happy and it depicts life in various countries, some shockingly poor, some devastatingly high pressure, with everything in between. What the film-makers discovered is that happiness is a choice and the difference between people who are chronically unhappy and those who are contagiously happy is the choice to cross over the line that divides the two. I find myself more often than not, embracing happiness even in the midst of potentially unhappy circumstances. Why do I do that? I sense that it is because I have learned that focusing on what there is to be happy about is a far sight more likely to produce it. While no emotion can be sustained forever, it is certainly possible and I would say, preferably to expand out capacity to experience and express it.
Action For Happiness has joined heart and hand with The United Nations to celebrate the first UN International Day of Happiness which is March 20th.
They describe their mission in this way:
“Action for Happiness is a movement of people committed to building a happier society. We want to see a fundamentally different way of life where people care less about what they can get for themselves and more about the happiness of others. We are bringing together like-minded people from all walks of life, drawing on the latest scientific research and backed by leading experts from the fields of… psychology, education, economics, social innovation and beyond. Members of the movement make a simple pledge: to try to create more happiness in the world around them through the way they approach their lives. We provide practical ideas to enable people to take action in different areas of their lives – at home, at work or in the community. We hope many of our members will form local groups to take action together.”
Check out their website and discover ideas for drenching yourself in happiness and join with others who are doing it too by taking the pledge. I did.
What are some ways to experience more, deeper, richer, fuller states of happiness?
Make a gratitude list
Do something kind for another
Plant a tree or a garden, digging your hands into soil (make mud pies too while you’re there:)
Visit a nursing home resident
Play with a child
Do FREE HUGS
Splash in puddles
Take a bubble bath
Eat a treat (guilt free)
Sing in the car or shower
Do Laughter Yoga
What are your favorite happiness inducers?