Good Ideas - Smile in the Car (Make Yourself Happier!)

Image by Julia Kostreva

It all started last week. While flipping channels, my boyfriend stumbled across The Happiness Advantage by Shawn Achor. It was fascinating! The main point of his presentation was that there are simple things we can do to increase our own happiness. This increased happiness has health and life benefits... but also, it's more happiness! Some of his ideas are listed here. Also, a few clips can be found here, and show times for future airings can be found here. (Check it out, if you have time.)

My boyfriend and I decided to each try one of Shawn's tips. Because it seemed easy, I decided to take a stab at smiling three additional times per day - with my eyes and everything. The next day I went to work, and didn't add my extra smiles. The same thing happened the next day, too. Oh no! Was I failing at happiness? I told myself I "just couldn't find the time."

Then the next day, during a staff meeting, my Head of School showed us this video. Wow!

While this video has many points, the thing that hit me was that I do have time. I have tons of it. All the little adult tedium that fills the every day can be a gift! It's my time to remember to smile, to remind myself of wonderful things that are happening in my life, (another time of Shawn's,) and to increase my own happiness. As a long-distance commuter, I have tons of time in the car, so that's when I get my extra smiles in.

So, if you see me driving along, smiling by myself, I'm not a crazy person. I'm building my own happiness. I'm also lengthening my life, bolstering my health, increasing my reasoning abilities, and decreasing my road rage. Imagine how much better things would be if we all smiled in the car?

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Are you smiling yet?


  1. This is fantastic! I love this idea. Thanks for sharing the inspiration :-)


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