It takes hands to build a house, but only hearts can build a home.

Author Unknown

Friday, January 19, 2018

Chapter 1, Page 19, Book 18

May you have enough happiness to make you sweet, enough trials to make you strong, enough sorrow to keep you human, enough hope to make you happy. 

New Year Day # 19

The Way We Affect Others

We may not always realize
that everything we do,
affects not only our lives,
but touches others too.

A single happy smile
can always brighten up the day,
for anyone who happens
to be passing by your way.

And a little bit of thoughtfulness
that shows someone you care,
creates a ray of sunshine
for both of you to share.

Yes, every time you offer
someone a helping hand,
every time you show a friend
you understand.

Every time you have a kind
and gentle word to give,
you help someone to find beauty
in this precious life we live.

For happiness brings happiness
and loving ways bring love,
and giving is the treasure,
that contentment is made of.

Author Unknown

One of the biggest mistakes we make in life is forgetting how much our actions influence the people around us. Every day …  Everything we do and think affects the people in our lives, and their reactions in turn affect others. As the effect of a seemingly insignificant word passes from person to person, its impact grows and can become a source of great joy, inspiration, anxiety, or pain. 

Happiness is contagious.  Turns out, misery may not love company, but happiness does.  Research suggests that happiness is influenced not only by the people you know, but by the people they know.  We can catch happiness from friends and family members like an emotional virus.  Your happiness could influence the happiness of someone you've never even met.

Surrounding ourselves with happier people will make us happier, make the people close to us happier, and make the people close to them happier. 

 Smile and the world smiles with you!

A positive attitude causes a chain reaction of positive thoughts, events and outcomes. It is a catalyst and it sparks extraordinary results. 

Wade Boggs

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Chapter 1, Page 18, Book 18

New Year Day #18

10 Step Program For Happiness

Throw out nonessential numbers. This includes age, weight and height. Let the doctor worry about them. That is why you pay him/her.

Keep only cheerful friends. The grouches pull you down.

Keep learning. Learn more about the computer, crafts, gardening, whatever. Never let the brain idle. An idle mind is the devil's workshop, The devil's name is Depression.

Enjoy the simple things. When the children are young, that is all that you can afford. When they are in college, that is all that you can afford. When you are on retirement, that is all that you can afford.

 Laugh often, long and loud. Laugh until you gasp for breath. Laugh so much that you can be tracked in the store by your distinctive laughter.

The tears happen. Endure, grieve, and move on. The only person who is with us our entire life, is ourselves. Be alive while you are alive.

Surround yourself with what you love, whether it is family, pets, keepsakes, music, plants, hobbies, whatever. Your home is your refuge.

 Cherish your health. If it is good, preserve it. If it is unstable, improve it. If it is beyond what you can improve, get help.

Don't take guilt trips. Go to the mall, the next county, foreign country, but not to guilt country.

Tell the people you love, that you love them, at every opportunity. AND ALWAYS REMEMBER: Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away.

Today, may there be peace within you. May you trust God that you are exactly where you are meant to be. I believe that friends are quiet angels who lift us to our feet when our wings have trouble remembering how to fly.

Author Unknown 

Step Programs are designed to help drive behavior change with a set of guiding principals outlining a course of action. I was a little surprised, but grateful to see that there is such a Program for Happiness.

You must take the first step. The first steps will take some effort, maybe pain. But after that, everything that has to be done is real-life movement. 

Ben Stein

Each step outlined above will help me as I endeavor to reach my goal but I think all of them are needed.  AA's Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions proclaims, The joy of living is the theme of the Twelfth Step, and action is the key word.  I’d say the same is true for the Happiness Program.    Happiness isn’t going to fall in our laps.  It will take some effort on our part as well.  We need to strengthen our happy muscle.  

Life is a series of steps. Things are done gradually. Once in a while there is a giant step, but most of the time we are taking small, seemingly insignificant steps on the stairway of life. 

Ralph Ransom

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Chapter 1, Page 17, Book 18

New Year Day #17

When one door of happiness closes, another opens; but often we look so long at the closed door that we do not see the one which has been opened for us

Helen Keller

Being happy is not some magical cure all. Happy people still get sick and lose loved ones.  Trying to live a happy life is not about denying negative emotions or pretending to feel joyful all the time. We all encounter adversity and it’s completely natural for us to feel anger, sadness, frustration and other negative emotions as a result.

Happiness is about being able to make the most of the good times, and to cope effectively with the inevitable bad times, in order to experience the best possible life overall.

It’s all about keeping the right thoughts top of mind from the get go every day, so they’re readily available on those hard days when you need them most. 

Instead of focusing on what you want, find something you already have in your life that makes you happy and take the time to appreciate it.

It’s true that we don’t know what we have until we lose it, but it is also true that we don’t know what we have been missing until it arrives.

The secret of happiness is the realization
that life is a gift, not a right.

Author Unknown

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Chapter 1, Page 16, Book 18

New Year Day #16

Be happy with what you have and are, be generous with both, and you won't have to hunt for happiness. 

William Ewart Gladstone

The true meaning of contentment is being satisfied with what you have and with who you are right now.

Ambition is important, but don’t see it as a trade off for appreciating what you have. When you 
trade today for tomorrow, you might realize you have nothing left.

It is impossible to develop contentment without gratitude, they are inseparable. And a grateful person is one who has learned to focus on the good things in their life, not the things that they lack.

Contentment is not something that's found; it is an attitude of the heart.

The key to being happy is to realize that you have what you need and become content

When you can think of yesterday without regret and tomorrow without fear, you are near contentment. 

Author Unknown

Monday, January 15, 2018

Chapter 1, Page 15, Book 18

The road to happiness lies in two simple principles: find what it is that interests you and that you can do well, and when you find it, put your whole soul into it -- every bit of energy and ambition and natural ability you have.

John D. Rockefeller, III

New Year Day #15

There are only two roads that lead to something like human happiness. They are marked by the words: love and achievement. In order to be happy oneself it is necessary to make at least one other person happy. The secret of human happiness is not in self seeking but in self forgetting. 

Theodor Reis

Some say the road to happiness is always under construction while others say that happiness is the road.  I’ve also heard that the road to happiness is paved with good intentions.

I saw an article that said there are 5 signs that you really are on the road to happiness and thought maybe this would be a great way to check and see if I got the directions right.

You fall asleep easily at night. The happier we are overall, the more likely we are to achieve peace of mind when hitting the hay.

 You don't crave bad things.  If we're eating well, not indulging in vices, and just living well, we won't need our guilty pleasures.

Your relationships are thriving.  You'll find yourself surrounded by good friends who simply want to enjoy life, without even knowing how.

 You are more open to trying new things.  Only when we are in a comfortable place do we ever feel confident reaching out.

 You stay in the moment. If you're checking your phone and social media accounts less often, chances are you're okay with living in each moment of the present. And that's happiness, isn't it?

People take different roads seeking fulfillment and happiness. Just because they're not on your road doesn't mean they've gotten lost. 

H. Jackson Brown, Jr.

I got 4 out of the 5 correct so I’m well on my way.  Now I have to work on the one about eating well.  I like to eat and not always the things that are healthy.  I never thought of them as guilty pleasures before.  

Whoever is happy will make others happy.

Anne Frank

When we forget about ourselves and think about others, no doubt we’ll find ourselves happier.  When you make someone else happy you are happy too. I love to make others happy and making them happy does give me a lot of happiness in return. But the truth is you have to be happy before you can make someone else happy.

All who joy would win must share it. Happiness was born a Twin. 

Lord George Gordon Byron

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Chapter 1, Page 14, Book 18

New Year Day #14

The happiest moments of my life have been the few which I have past at home in the bosom of my family.

Thomas Jefferson

A happy family life is the essence of all round happiness. Even though my children are all grown and have children of their own, family is still a top priority in my life.  They give my life meaning and very often are my motivation for doing most of what I do.  Having a large family is a blessing.  There is always something going on and much to do  and celebrate too.

Learn to enjoy every minute of your life. Be happy now. Don't wait for something outside of yourself to make you happy in the future. Think how really precious is the time you have to spend, whether it's at work or with your family. Every minute should be enjoyed and savored. 

Earl Nightingale

My family inspires me to strive to do more and enjoy life regardless of of what else may be going on.  We are always there for each other and help out when needed.   In between hardships, and illness there has been a lot of laughter and a lot of joy.  

Never forget the power of family and cherish every moment you have with them.

there is
lasting love,
there is 
a family.

Shere Hite

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Chapter 1, Page 13, Book 18

New Year Day #13

Every situation in life is temporary.
So, when life is good,
make sure you enjoy and receive it fully.
And when life is not so good,
remember that it will not last forever
and better days are on the way.

Jenni Young

I remember a story of a man of some wealth who overheard a lady remarking, Oh, if I only had fifty dollars I would be perfectly content. He thought about that for a few moments. If the lady only had fifty dollars she would be content. He thought to himself, Well, I can help her out. So he walked up to her and handed her a fifty dollar bill with his best wishes. 

She was very clear in her show of gratitude. She really appreciated his gift. As she walked away he heard her mumble under her breath, Why on earth didn't I say one hundred dollars? 

Have you ever said something like that? I know I have. 

Take time to pause, breathe, and appreciate the life we have been given and the abilities we have to do what we need to do.

To be happy, drop the words if only and substitute instead the words next time.

Smiley Blanton