• Domestic arts,  Inspirational quotes,  Optimism

    Little sparks of daily joy

    “Joy has been leaking out of our lives. The small pleasures of the ordinary day seem almost contemptible, and glance off us lightly.…So, perhaps it’s a good time to reconsider pleasure at its roots. Changing out of wet shoes and socks, for instance. Bath robes. Yawning and stretching. Real tomatoes.” ~ Barbara Holland, Endangered Pleasures There’s not much happy news in the world lately. We can count on a depressing cycle of mass shootings; political turmoil; war casualties; vicious winter storms. Which is why I always look forward to David Muir’s “America Strong” segment on ABC’s “World News Tonight.” Concluding the nightly news show, “America Strong” highlights uplifting stories of…

  • Gratitude,  Health & wellbeing,  Optimism

    Three’s a charm

    “Three grand essentials to happiness in this life are: Something to do, something to love, and something to hope.” ~Joseph Addison, English poet and essayist There’s something to be said for “The Rule of Three” — a time-honored literary device. We’ve got those three blind mice, three musketeers, three spirits of Christmas, and three wise men, just for starters. And of course, in countless fairy tales, the protagonist is granted three wishes or given three tasks. Yesterday I posted a few thoughts on the benefits of Dr. Andrew Weil’s “Three Good Things” journaling exercise. Today, along these lines, 18th-century essayist Joseph Addison gives us “three grand essentials” for happiness. How…

  • Health & wellbeing,  Optimism,  Stress reduction

    “Three Good Things”

    “Being a born optimist is not required – this is a habit you can acquire. A simple way to get started is to begin the ‘Three Good Things’ intervention: Each day for at least one week, write down three things that went well that day, and the reasons why.” ~Andrew Weil, MD Are you suffering the post-holiday-letdown blues? Dr. Andrew Weil’s ‘Three Good Things’ prescription has been shown to increase levels of happiness for a full six months. I’ve used this exercise in my journaling workshops, and participants who follow it consistently tell me it’s a life-changing routine. Get yourself a journal or notebook for the purpose, and remind yourself…

  • Animals,  How to Win Friends and Influence People,  Humor,  Optimism

    Paying compliments

    “Nowadays we are all of us so hard up that the only pleasant things to pay are compliments.” ~Oscar Wilde As the old adage goes, flattery will get you everywhere — and Oscar Wilde agreed. Furthermore, as reported in Medical Economics, researchers confirmed that “people respond positively to flattery, even when they know the flatterer has an ulterior motive.” But who needs science to prove that most people appreciate a compliment? When we dress up for a party or pull out the good china for dinner, for instance, we’re pleased when someone acknowledges the effort we made. An honest compliment is another form of generosity — and it reveals the…

  • Autumn,  Gratitude,  Optimism,  Personal growth


    “Of all the practices, I believe that learning to feel and express gratitude may be the most important in achieving and maintaining a happy life.” ~Andrew Weil, M.D. Numerous studies show that keeping a gratitude journal on a daily basis will improve our life satisfaction within three weeks. You need only list a few items such as the taste of your morning brew, the fall colors on your morning walk, or the lovely handwritten thank-you note you received. Record your gratitude list at the end of the day. Watch your happiness increase by Thanksgiving. ~Cindy La Ferle