Monday, September 23, 2013

21 Days of Happy

Last week was very eventful and included a 48 hour work trip to Baltimore.  Sadly, I did not have the chance to tour the beautiful city but instead spent the entire time in meetings. Which, was a major bummer because I have only been there once before and love some crab legs. But major plus was that I met some really great people working on an exciting project, had a swanky penthouse style hotel room,  all my travel went smoothly, and Randy and Emily made it without me! Definitely a successful trip in my book!

During my downtime at the airport, I spent some time reading and thinking about what I'm now calling (for lack of a better phrase) "my happiness quest." That's not to imply that I'm unhappy but rather looking for opportunities to find happiness in as many experiences as possible and, perhaps more importantly, share happiness with others. I came across this fantastic Ted Talk that hits the nail on the head. If you have time, you have to watch the video. It's quite thought provoking and extremely hilarious.

Through some research and experimenting, Shawn Achor has identified  five proven techniques (ideally done consistently over 21 days) can rewire your brain for happiness. They are:  

"1. Write down three new things you’re grateful for. Your brain learns to hone in on the positives in the world. 
2. Journal about one positive experience. It will feel like you’re reliving it. 
3. Exercise. You teach your brain that your behavior matters. 
4. Meditate. It reduces the noise in your brain and allows you to focus. 
5. Do random acts of kindness."

So, starting today, I am going to kick off my 21 Days of Happy and I'd love for you to join me. I'm going to journal in my "old fashioned" leather bound journal instead of on here. Because, ya know, there are some things I like to keep private. But I will be sure to share highlights here and on Twitter (@moxiemegs) using the hashtag #21daysofhappy. Follow me and we'll share our experiences together and see where we end up on October 13th.

And to kick us off, I have to share I had some wonderfully happy moments from over the weekend. Swinging and giggling with Emily, a beautiful early morning run, time strolling the downtown farmers market with friends, seeing my daughter really getting the hang of walking all by herself, hearing her very clearly say "Mickey" when Mickey Mouse came on the tv, enjoying an uplifting worship service at church, time in the sun at the local park with R&E, and eating a delicious dinner prepared by my sweet husband. Over the course of just two days, I am reminded of how many positive experiences I've had and just how much I have to be thankful for.

Happy journaling, my friends!