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Three ways to stretch your happiness

April 7, 2011


Per the blog post yesterday Stretch Your Happiness I’d thought I’ve give you three ways to stretch your happiness today; The Triple A.

Accept. Accepting circumstances, accepting others the way they are, accepting we do not have control will help you sleep better.

The last couple years I’ve had to accept many health issues. I can say I’ve gotten wa-hay better at it lately and it has helped me enjoy the MANY other parts of life that are kink-free (this is a family show, keep focused). I figure I’m continuing to learn about the human body (continued, free training for my yoga teaching) and, hey, I get loads of time to catch up on reading while waiting patiently in the office of my physical therapist, doctor as well as MRI and lab offices.

Recently, while writing my book proposal I also spilled a whole pot of coffee on my laptop (where none of the MANY writing files were backed up). Though I found myself at the computer recovery place without shoes (which signals stress) I promise I did a fine job at accepting my fate (I even surprised myself). I figured noone had stolen my idea or chopped my head off and really the world was not going to end if I had to re-write everything. If anything it might help me get even more clear on my idea; more succinct with my words.

Turned out 85% of my files were recovered, thank you Big Buddha! and the pain saved was a solid 95%. There was truly nothing I could do but try and stay in the happiest place I could. Which was in shoes, waiting patiently for four days for the recovery specialists to call me with the big news. I’ve never been happier to hear “85%”.

Apologize. You will walk tall(er).

It ain’t easy but the rewards are huge. Apologizing to a friend, a parent, a spouse or your children gives you a new view…and views make us happy.

I’m always extremely happy when I apologize to my FIVE YEAR OLD for not being the greatest listener or reacting too quick in certain situations. It’s as simple as that. . . happy.

On this note, you will always get extra happy “credit” for apologizing to a parent, an adult sibling and your child/ren. These seem to be the toughest loved ones to stand in front of while you mutter the words.

Anonymity. Playing anonymous is key to happiness.

Though we live in an world of interdependence and love being busy (aka “having plans”), we must learn to live on our own every now and again. ‘Having me time’ is essentially the same thing. In this space we are able to think but we are also able to do things we might not otherwise do if we had eyes watching us; were in a group or with someone else.

Trying new things increases our happiness. It could be as simple as a yoga class, booking a weekend trip for yourself or escaping in a book. Whatever the case, find and push yourself to find this time for any size adventure.

I can say living in Amsterdam, Guadalajara and even now here in Los Angeles again I’ve seen anonymity grow my happiness ten-fold, time and time again. Pushing through feelings of being “alone” can increase your sense of worth which also increases happiness. Again, it needn’t be big but it just needs to happen.

And because I’m having a dinner party tonight and just passed a poster for The Hangover this next A is top of mind. Yes I’m a yogi but not a purist…

Alcohol. Si, señor, it can make you happy, just try to practice the other things too.

how to be a walking Momtra/Dadtra™: accept, apologize and play anonymous then pour yourself one. The latter can be filed under ‘taking yourself less seriously’ as discussed in yesterday’s Stretch Your Happiness post. Docs might say drink in moderation…fine. But I say practice the Triple A’s beyond that. To really ‘get’ a new habit to stick you gotta over-do it sometimes…

photo by Channing Barringer

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