Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Project Happiness, Lesson #1

Last week, I read The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin.

While this book was not as enlightening as I had hoped, I did take away some invaluable lessons on finding more happiness in an ordinary day. Today and throughout the coming weeks, I will share with you some of the lessons I learned from Rubin's book.

I was interested in reading The Happiness Project for several reasons. I started the book on January 1st,  and I knew that the book followed Rubin's year-long quest for happiness. I felt it was an appropriate read for the new year. Also, I definitely relate to Rubin, who says that she is not necessarily unhappy, but often fails to find the happiness in an average day.

I vividly recall a conversation that Brian and I had one romantic evening in the early weeks of our relationship. We were out on his patio sharing stories about our families, our lives, and our life goals. Now that I'm thinking about it, I'm pretty sure I downed an entire bottle of wine that night, so maybe my memory is a bit fuzzy (In reality, it was probably not romantic and I probably went on for hours about my family, my life, and my goals while Brian appeared to be listening). Anyways, I said that my goal in life was simple: just to be happy.

And I am happy. But are there things I can be doing that will make me even happier?

Of everything in Rubin's book, what stood out to me most was this:


How can I set a higher standard for myself as a wife, a mother, a friend?


I immediately applied this to my life and asked myself "How can I set a higher standard for myself as a girlfriend, a student, a friend, etc?"

How does this sentence look for you? And in what ways can you set a higher standard for yourself?

Yesterday I woke up and thought of ways that I could set a higher standard for myself as a student and as Brian's girlfriend.

By the end of the day, I had skipped my very first Physics lecture and I had called Brian a douchebag.
I threw the higher standards right out the window.
Oh well.
Tomorrow I'll try harder.

This week/month/year I challenge you (and myself) to set higher standards.  And if (like myself) you fail miserably on some days....

Don't worry. Be happy.

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