My Very Own Happiness Project

As I have finished the book “Calling In The One”, I began thinking about what it was with The Ambassador that I found so incredibly appealing.  What was I trying to get from him that maybe I’m not giving myself.

One thing I found so great was the constant laughter, and I found him to be quite lighthearted on the surface.  I certainly crave that and have somewhat lost touch with that side of my personality.  I can be that way, but mostly at my core I am a very intense person and generally far too serious.  I’ve always been this way, even as a child.

I remember visiting my mother in Nebraska when my daughter was very young.  She was probably about 1 yr old.  My mother had this childrens pop up kind of playhouse thing that looked like a fire truck.  I remember popping my head out the top, grabbing on to the sides, and chasing her around making fire engine sounds while she ran and giggled like crazy.  My sisters watched me in awe.  “Who ARE you?” they asked, laughingly.

They had a similar reaction about a year later as I nursed my son with him twirling my hair with his fingers.  There were surprised at my ability to relax in to the situation.  So, see, those sides of my personality are in there.  For me, the key is to not let one side of my personality take over.  If the relaxation part takes over, I get super lazy and often times find myself glued to the TV.  If the silly part takes over… well, I’m not sure what would happen.  I don’t know I’ve ever experienced that before.  If I think hard about it I’d say I get selfish and dismissive of others when this part of my personality takes over.  I’m just fun, fun, fun, me, me, me.

The serious side is by far the strongest part of my personality and so most times if one part takes over– it’s Ms. Serious, which can also be destribed as Ms. Worrier, Ms. No Damn Fun, and maybe a bit Little Miss Selfish.  Balance… lately for me, BALANCE is the word of the day, or many days.

So, in an attempt to get in touch with these sides of my personality, I zipped out town spontaneously with my kiddos a couple times.  Very good for the go-with-the-flow part, and I hit up The Barnes and Noble when we got to the city.

I stepped through the doors telling myself I was only looking for books in HUMOR.  I want more laughter in my life, and I’m going to find a way to get it.  First step, considering where I am spending my time and energy —  and lately it’s been in serious things.  Relationship questions, and spiritual pursuits.  So, now, I’m going to concentrate on the lighter side.

I walked through the sale racks though, and despite my determination, there was a book that screeeeamed at me.  Hahaha… ironically, with all the fear of committment I’ve been dealing with in myself and other, it was called “Marry Him” — The subtitled read “The case for settling for Mr. Good Enough” which I found fascinating.  It was written by Lori Gottlieb.

The author was also important to me, because I often wonder how much credibility I have writing about dating and relationships.  I’m no marriage and family therapist, and it’s not as though I have relationships that are the shining examples of happy and healthy.  Far from it, I’ve waded through any number of different types of relationships, like a chain of learning from my mistakes.  Well, Lori Gottlieb is just the same.  She’s a 41 year old single Mom who had her child through artificial insemination, and she’s just a writer.  She had something interesting to say, though, and has been published more than once just by telling her own story.  Hmmm.  Encouraging.  Plus it was on sale for like $5 down from atleast $15.   I was hooked!  I had to have it.  I grabbed it and went on in search of humor.

It was difficult for me to pick out a book in the humor section.  I find that odd since I love to laugh and in real life, I’ll laugh at almost anything.  I am NOT a tough customer.

I checked out the Chelsea Handler books on the shelf, but I just wasn’t feeling it.  Odd, since I am certainly a fan of Chelsea Handler  (I swear the woman has like NO filter), and The Sultry School Teacher had barely been able to breathe, she was laughing so hard reading a couple of her books… but alas, the two books they had on the shelf were just not doing it for me.  I looked over books from comedians I knew… and some I didn’t.

I finally settled on “I Don’t Care About Your Band” by Julie Klausner.  It’s subtitled “What I learned from indie rockers, trust funders, pornographers, felongs, faux sensitive hipsters, and other guys I’ve dated”.  HA!  Ya, right up my alley.

The next day of our mini vacation, my kiddos and I hit target in search of Ninjago paradise… and of course I was drawn to their books section, even though I’d nearly broke my pocketbook at Barnes and Noble the day before.  Still, the gorgeously laid out array of books and magazines pulled me in like a magnet.

These days, I’m a reading machine.  When my mind is absorbed in something, I’ll just suck it in like a vacuum… Plus, in my job, and especially working graveyard shift, I’m there in case shit.  In case shit happens.  I am babysitting a radio and a 911 line, which need no attention unless it’s ringing or talking and in the dead of night that’s not very often.  So, I’ve got some time these days.

The first thing I noticed was a book totally out of place, sitting on a rack with books for juveniles.  It was a Chicken Soup for The Soul series edition called “Think Positive;  101 Inspirational Stories About Counting Your Blessings and Having a Positive Attitude.”  Hmmm, cultivating gratitude.  I think I’ll also make that part of my personal happiness project, and then I found it….  a book actually titled “The Happiness Project” by Gretchen Rubin!!

The subtitle read ‘Or, why I spent a year trying to sing in the morning, clean my closets, fight right, read Aristotle, and generally have more fun!”   YES!!  I thought.  The process of cleaning my closets, literally and figuratively through “Calling in The One” has been so refreshing, revitalize, freeing….  and that’s my whole purpose in this current mission I’m embarking on– to generally have more fun!    Amazing how that happens for me…  I decide I need to bring something in to my life, and BAM God puts it right in front of me!  EVEN MORE the bottom of the front cover stated “Start your own Happiness Project — guide inside.”  Oh, I almost cheered in the middle of a silent department store!

I grabbed it and added it to the giant stack of books I already had.  As the cherry on top of my pile of happy happy books (and one semi-serious once I couldn’t resist) I found a book emblazoned with the words “Wreck This Journal” by Keri Smith.  I flipped through the pages.  It seemed to be marketed to teens, but I thought “Are you kidding, super serious adults like me need it more!”  It was chalk full of little excercises that literally and figuratively encourage you to color outside the lines.  There were activities in there that were completely nonsensical, like the page that says “Eat colorful candy and lick this page”…  there for no other reason but fun.  I loved it!

So, now my tool box of information and direction for my Happiness Project has all been purchased, and I’m off to get readin’…….  buuuuut, maybe I’ll read that “Marry Him” book first.  HA!

Published in: on May 8, 2012 at 9:00 am  Comments (2)  
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2 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. I’m on board with ya! Just got an e-version that was not $5 but not $26 either. Woo! I’m looking forward to this journey!


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