Maxing out your joy and minimizing the impact of upsets are learned skills. My blog is based on the belief we can learn from the experts – and each other. Circumstances may differ, but they often reflect common basic truths. Happiness is a Habit…we can learn how and practice. Post your questions and comments, and I’ll try to show you how you be happy if…
How to Be Happy If It’s Storming (The Wizard of Blizzard)
Starting a blog about happiness on a day of spectacularly “bad” weather seems both ironic and appropriate – since I believe that happiness is an inside job. Of course, it sometimes seems to take “magical” thinking to transform the negative into positive. That’s why I call it “The Wizard of Blizzard.” Like any magic trick, we get better with practice – so I decided to practice on the weather – and on my students.
When I walked into my classroom, one of my students looked at the snow swirling outside the window, made a sour face and said, “Look at that disgusting weather!” I said, “Nice to be inside!” The students had to agree – it was!
Then I told them a story about two friends of mine who sent me Emails comparing their sunny, warm weather to my snowstorms. I Emailed them back – “Cold outside – warm inside!” (I guess my friends got their happiness from a touch of schadenfreud - the German word for delight in the pain of others.)
One of my students said that when she goes on vacation, she sends her friends postcards comparing her fabulous, sunny weather with the cold back home. I said, “Well if that makes you happy, I’m happy.”
Now, I don’t actually write my friends about how my vacation weather is superior to the cold back home – I figure they don’t want to hear it. But I do like to think about it – so, while it’s not nice to admit, maybe I have a touch of schadenfreud too!
I think that a positive attitude takes practice – if we practice on little things like the weather, we’ll have the mental muscle for bigger things. Also, I don’t believe in denial – the weather is cold and snowy – but we can decide where to focus – on the cold weather – or on our good fortune in being inside, having warm winter coats, gloves, hoods, hats, earmuffs, boots, etc.
Anyway, I came home to a warm cup of spiced tea and smooth jazz while the blizzard roared outside.
As the song goes: “The weather outside is frightful, but in here it’s so delightful…let it snow, let it snow, let it snow…”
- Remind yourself that happiness is an inside job – you can’t change the weather – you can change how you feel about it
- Shift focus – denial doesn’t work – but you can shift focus from what you don’t like to what’s positive in your situation
- Practice an attitude of gratitude – warm clothes, warm home, warm tea – not bad in a blizzard!
“No matter what the music, learn how to dance”
Hugs 2 U Dr. Sue
Web: http://www.drsue.com “
Keys of Love” - positive songs on CD Baby – http://www.cdbaby.com/drsue
copyright 2010 Susan “Dr. Sue” Horowitz