64 new crayons, stretch socks, jelly rolls, “I love you,” bath sheets, Mickey Mouse, West Side Story…and 13,993 more things author Barbara Ann Kipfer has identified in her book, 14,000 Things To Be Happy About. Whew, what a list!
I’m sure if we all sat down, we, too, can come up with a massive list of things to be happy about.
So I challenged myself to see how many I can come up with in 5 minutes. I’m not surprised that I came up with 100 right off the bat! I won’t bore you and make you read my list (only a few) but I do highly recommend that you take the challenge and start on your own list as well.
The Science of Thinking Happy Thoughts
Whenever I need a pick me up, I look back at my gratitude journal or simply think about happy situations I’ve experienced. Not only does this help me remember how grateful I am about my life but I truly feel joyful and positive when I do so.
Now that I’ll be adding to my list of things to be happy about on a regular basis, I can add this to my list of things to look at when I’m not feeling my best.
Research shows that positive thoughts/emotions stimulate a greater sense of well being overall, including better relationships, greater health, and even can attribute to a longer life span (Source: Open Hearts Build Lives).
“Positive emotions momentarily broaden people’s attention and thinking, enabling them to draw on higher-level connections and a wider-than-usual range of percepts or ideas,” per the Review of General Psychology.
In this heightened state of awareness, I feel clearer, more open, and more connected with those around me and that’s enough for me to want to feel happy more often than not!
You can read additional impressive insights about how positive thinking impacts your everyday life in a paper published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.
27 Things To Be Happy About (My short list)
Want to see some of the things that came up on my list in 5 minutes? Here ya go!
- smile lines
- my mom’s voice
- protective hairstyles
- a baby’s laughter – that ALWAYS makes me smile!
- nail polish
- daydreaming (in which I lovingly call Kesha Land)
- logic puzzles, when I can figure them out 🙂
- Honey Nut Cheerios with sliced bananas
- strumming my electric guitar even though I don’t know how to play (yet)
- a peaceful sway in a hammock
- jewelry and shoe shopping 🙂
- the “high” of being suspended in air while parasailing
- Modern Family (series show)
- Fridays (chill days)
- Mondays (high energy days)
- how my laugh is contagious
- french fries
- my favorite song on repeat
- learned lessons
- the whisper of a deep voice in my ear
- “In order to be something, you gotta go through something…”
- getting right answers on Jeopardy!
- my best friends
- my boo boos
- YOU! 😉
Ayight, I truly can keep writing but I’ll spare you (for now)!
What’s on your list?
I can tell you all day to be happy but while that’s a good gesture and all, it can be easier said than done. Sometimes, you have to trick yourself to “be happy.” Reviewing your list of things you’re happy about can help.
Now that you know (and hopefully find out more for yourself) how positive thinking and happy thoughts can impact your life, I hope you find more ways to weave and build those happy moments in your daily routine, play often, and seek more adventure. Your mind will make sure the rest is done!
So what are some things on your happy list?