Girlfriends make us healthier, less stressed, live longer AND happier.
Happiness is a strange thing. To me it may be found in just a little natural sunlight and Spring bulbs. To you it might come from a hug from a dear child or a laugh with coworker. To others it could come from having and spending money, traveling the globe or having your cat sleep on your lap as you work on the computer (like mine is right now). It’s kind of the elusive factor that helps us the challenge of achieving happiness and enjoy our life.
Recently I had the privilege of hearing Gretchen Rubin, author of The Happiness Project, speak when I was at SXSW. Her book/project (with tagline: “Or, Why I Spent a Year Trying to Sing in the Morning, Clean My Closets, Fight Right, Read Aristotle, and Generally Have More Fun“) about happiness profiled her life for a year as she focused on happiness in various aspects of her life – marriage, work, parenting, self-fulfillment. As she says, it is a “memoir of the year I spent test-driving the wisdom of the ages, the current scientific studies, and the lessons from popular culture about how to be happy–from Aristotle to Martin Seligman to Thoreau to Oprah.”
One thing I remember her talking about was that sometimes we find happiness in little moments – like having a made bed so we feel a little more organized and in control of our lives. (I didn’t get to hear all of her presentation or get to ask her about her opinion on the impact of female friendship on happiness – but I hope to interview her one day and do that! We do know from books like The Tending Instinct, like we mentioned above, that female friendship makes women happier – as well as healthier, less stressed and live longer.)
Why is learning about and focusing on happiness important?
Well, we don’t want to fixate on happiness to the point of being disturbed if we’re not feeling noticeably, hugely and consistently happy. In fact, she did say that concentrating on happiness can take away from the unexpected, surprising joy of discovering happiness. But, it is an emotion that contributes to our overall health and quality of life so something worthy of talking about.
Which is why we turned to the ‘experts!’ – YOU! We asked some of you what makes you happy and you shared (on our Facebook page):
As your girlfriend, I want you to be happy (and I assume you want the same for me!). And, just like the girlfriend quotes above, I believe we can inspire each other by sharing. So …
What makes you happy?
Share and inspire. (Thanks girlfriend!)
p.s. We did a previous blog that covers happiness as well as optimism. Check out this blog about Michael J. Fox and how he’s always “Looking Up.” And, again, share your comments on what makes you happy.