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Project Happiness Articles

Blog posts from happiness experts, covering everything from gratitude, mindfulness, social emotional learning, altruism and service, wellness, freedom, forgiveness, social connection, purpose, soul, self-love, compassion, and everything under the massive happiness umbrella. Browse our blog posts, or write for us!

Giving Tuesday 2019: Help Make the World a Happier Place

You've certainly heard about Black Friday and Cyber Monday.  The consumer focused Shop-Till-You-Drop (or fall asleep at the computer) Holiday Sales designed to kick off the holiday season and empty your wallet just in time to hit that reward center in your brain and make you want to do it all over again in a few weeks.  (Hello short-term gratification!).   This is why we here at Project Happiness LOVE #GivingTuesday.  Giving Tuesday was created in 2012 by the United Nations Foundation and 92nd Street Y as a direct response to the consumer focus that had begun to take over the season and to re-embrace the giving of the giving season.  Studies have shown that altruism is a key factor...
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18 Questions to Ask Yourself About Intrinsic Happiness

When we think about happiness, we tend to think some people are naturally happy while some people aren’t and never will be.  But this is only half the truth. According to Sonja Lyubomirksy in The How of Happiness, 40% of our happiness is up to us. We all have a baseline level of happiness, but 40% is in our control. That’s a heck of a lot of improvement available at our fingertips. 
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Managing High Stress: How I Deal With It (And How You Can Too)

When I’d encounter myself in high-stress situations, I would engage in the following 5-minute exercise, which is extremely efficient if you feel a lot of nervousness and you need to be quickly calmed down (i.e: when looking for a job, before an interview, before a presentation, before asking for a raise). You can do it wherever and whenever you want.
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World Mental Health Day 2019

World Mental Health Day was founded by the World Health Organization in 1992 and observed on October 10th each year.  Its objective is to raise awareness of mental health globally and mobilize efforts in support of mental health.  Additionally, the day provides an opportunity for organizations like Project Happiness, who work on mental health issues, to talk about their work and get the conversation moving.
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How Journaling Changed My Life

Journaling brings happiness because it helps us to see the forest through the trees. The act of writing helps us prioritize the people, places, activities, and work that foster joy and meaning in our lives.
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Finding Happy (It’s easier than you think!)

If happiness is available to us at any moment through the power of our minds, why does it sometimes seem so hard to do? When our thoughts run amok, how do we choose better ones? We’ve all had those experiences (moments, hours, even days!) when finding a happier thought seemed nearly impossible. When endless loops of worry, frustration, overwhelm, etc. not only challenged our ability to find our happy place, they caused us to forget we even had the choice.
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11 Ways to Cultivate Positive Environments That Elevates Happiness

Do your parents, significant others, friends, or even colleagues have tons of quotes and positive sayings around the house? Mine do. Everywhere I went in my childhood home, there was always some form of inspiration. From the guest bathroom to my mom's home office, there was never a moment where I didn’t see something positive. 
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Making Emotions Your Friend

When I was growing up, it was OK to show the so-called “positive” emotions, like happiness, excitement, amusement or love – no one had a problem with that. But, if I expressed confusion, or sadness, or anger, that did not go over quite as well. Have you ever felt like you had permission to display a happy demeanor, but when you wanted to get real, certain people wanted to run the other way? And, maybe you led the pack, running to avoid/deny those feelings too…   I have one thing to say: WASTED OPPORTUNITY!  What? Yes, it turns out that all the emotions: the happy, the sad, the beautiful, the ugly, even the embarrassing, all carry information to guide us...
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This School Year Smash Stigma with Manic Monologues

“We want to reclaim the word ‘manic.’  The vagina monologues has done an incredible amount of work de-stigmatising female sexuality and we wanted to do the same thing with mental illness.”  Zack and Elisa started off soliciting stories from Facebook and Sanford communities and put together 15 stories of mental illness, from sad and heartbreaking, to hilarious, uplifting and, powerful.  Manic Monologues ran three sold out shows in May 2019 at Stanford and will run at UCLA in February 2020.
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You Have the Power to Choose What You Feel

When I was a kid, I sort of mastered the art of lucid dreaming. Here’s how I did it: when I went to bed at night, I’d visualize a wheel cut into pizza pie slices. There was a type of revolving window on top of the wheel that I could turn to see “inside” each pizza slice. And each slice showed a different image. Perhaps one would be a forest, another a jungle. Maybe one would have music, another silence. I’d turn the wheel until I landed on an image that I liked, and then I’d enter that image—and that would focus my dreams. I don’t know if I still have that talent. I haven’t tried it in decades. But I...
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