Thursday, June 2, 2011

100 Steps Toward Happiness: Part 5

I hope everyone's Thursday is going well.
Here is the next ten steps toward happiness!

We're halfway there!

41.) Set a goal and do it. You know that thing you've been wanting to do for so long? That thing you keep saying that you'll start tomorrow/next week/next month? Well, write down your goal. Write down a timeline for getting it done. And then do it. Instead of continuing to put it off until some undetermined point down the road, start today. There's no time like the present!

42.) Do something spontaneous. Whether it's calling up a friend at the last second because you want to go get ice cream or going to the park and finding some people who are kicking a soccer ball around and asking to join them; whether it's surprising your family with dinner set on the table when they all come home or sending a letter to your grandparents for no particular reason; whether it's getting in your car and driving into the city for a day of antique window shopping or heading out to the countryside for a little alone time at a garden center--just go and do. Sometimes, it's good to be spontaneous and give yourself a little personal time that wasn't structured into your busy schedule.

43.) Spend a day at the beach. Maybe you don't live near enough to a coast to get to the ocean, but I bet you can improvise and live close to some kind of body of water that you can swim in. Even if it means a pool in your Uncle's backyard, use your imagination and send yourself somewhere tropical while laying out by the pool side. I take to water like a fish, and I know that anytime I'm at the beach (or imagining I'm at one) I'm happy. Just remember the sunscreen!

44.) Make yourself a mix tape. I know, I know. No one uses cassettes anymore. But mix tape sounds better than mix CD. Regardless, whenever I know I'll be driving around in my car, or running or sitting on a bus with my iPod shuffle, I make myself a playlist of music that I'm really into at that time. That way, I can rock out in my car, on my run, or on that once-lonely bus ride. Music always seems to turn my mood around.

45.) Get some sidewalk chalk, find a good piece of sidewalk, and get creative. I know when I was little, sidewalk chalk was the best thing since sliced bread. Now that I'm in college, I still find myself loving sidewalk chalk. We use it around campus to advertise events and lectures on campus, and I love being part of the "Chalking Committee." Sure, I don't get to draw a hop-scotch or a rainbow, but it still lets me release my inner chalking child. And it's a great summer activity, too!

46.) Throw a theme party. Everyone loves a Hawaiian Luau. Everyone also loves a toga party. And everyone certainly loves an 80's/90's dance party. So why not invite your friends over for some snacks, drinks, and music for a night of merriment and fun? Throwing a party, while some work, is rewarding--because in the end you know that you were the reason everyone had such a good time!

47.) Snap some bubble wrap. Stressed? Anxious? Feeling upset? Grab some bubble wrap and snap away. It's kind of like an office supplies stress reliever. And it's even more fun when having a snapping contest with a sibling, friend, or co-worker to see who can snap all of their bubble wrap the fastest.

48.) Paint your fingernails or toenails some really funky colors. While you men out there might decide not to partake in number 48, I know that almost all women can agree. When your fingernails or toenails are painted colors you normally would never use, you can't help but smile a little every time you look at them. Or is this just me?

49.) Orange slices. Remember those days you played pee-wee T-ball or kiddie soccer? You were probably 6 or 7 years old, and barely could control your balance, but you ran around on a field, not really sure what you were doing. The only thing you truly looked forward to--were orange slices. Halftime would come. Breaks between innings would come. And you could eat an orange slice with your team mates and pals. To this very day, orange slices still make me happy because of those memories.

50.) Learn to let the little things go. I will be the first to admit that I am the absolute worst at this step. I take things personally way too often, and I tend to cry about the little things more than I would normally care to admit. It's a step toward happiness that I'm working on... and although it's not easy (these past two weeks have been full of me taking things too personally and letting the little things get to me way too much) I'm really trying to make a conscious effort to change my attitude about the little things.

Share your thoughts and ideas about what makes you happy and you may see them show up here next week!

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