Don’t Worry Be Happy – April 2011

Spring is in the air. Snow banks are shrinking, daffodils are growing, and Benny is wearing a t-shirt and a smile as he rides his bike around the driveway.  I am filled with gratitude to live in this beautiful place surrounded by people I love.  After all the sad news from around the world, this feels like a delicious respite.

In a recent article from the Rodale newsletter, “Be As Happy As Hawaii Wherever You Live,” Emily Main shares some tips for boosting happiness:

1. Find a religion, engage in prayer, or meditate (with Kathy Benton after church on 1st and 3rd Sundays).  Israeli researchers found that people are happier attending religious services than shopping at the mall.  (We discussed this topic at PF one night after we watched “Story of Stuff,” a documentary that notes people’s happiness wanes as they buy more “stuff.”)

2. Find a confidant and be a good listener.  Engage in meaningful conversations.  Share yourself and tune in to others.

3. Say “thank you” often.  Gratitude is a healing antidote to depression.  Find one thing to be grateful for: good health, loved ones, a job, or even access to local food.

4. Get outside.  Spending time in nature lifts spirits and boosts vitality.  Take a walk, listen to birds, prune a tree, watch the moonrise or the sunset, breathe.

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