The Grand Overseer sent me advice on how to be happy this week. Oh TGO, you are always looking out for me. This was timely as it has been a while since I asked myself, “GG, are you happy?” I suppose that’s partly because I feel a bit like Stuart Smalley, the SNL self-help character from the early 90s, when I ask myself questions like that. Also because I find being super introspective a drag, which seemingly defeats the purpose of contemplating happiness. But being happy is pretty darn important, so I risked it.
While I know TGO has my best interests at heart, I thought it prudent to ask The Oracle if there were other, additional ways to ensure my happiness. The Oracle had a lot to offer. I mean A LOT — so, I just reviewed the first few pages. One thing I can tell you for sure is that happy people are big on counting. Just look at some of the sites The Oracle suggested for me:
- Five Things Happy People Do
- Choosing To Be Happy, Strategies for Happiness: 7 Steps to Becoming a Happier Person
- Twelve Things Happy People Do Differently (or if you are a Sherlock Holmes fan, John Watson’s 12 Things Happy People Do). Psst! It’s the same list.
- 15 Powerful Things Happy People Do Differently
- 21 Habits of Happy People
- What the Happiest People Know for Sure
As someone trained in measurement and methods, I can totally buy into the idea that being >quantitative = >happy (more counting = more happy). In an effort to countinue (har har) this trend — and to be countinuous (har) on the blog — I’ve consolidated a list of the Top Seven Secrets* to Happiness and noted if the Princesses have mastered these felicitous skills. =)
- Foster friendships and social relationships. I think we princesses do well on fostering relationships. At the very least, we have managed to stay good friends with each other while exploring new ground (becoming blog partners). Through our posts, we’ve managed to make some new friends. [Keep reading AJ/Melia, Arianna, Devin, Kristina, Meagan, and Velody!] And to reconnect with old friends. [We ❤ you B!, Charles, Father Snort, k!, and T.K.!] ✔
- Have a positive attitude. Hmm. I think we generally have a positive attitude. Certainly when it comes to being Pagan we do. One of the purposes of this blog is to promote a positive image of Paganism, after all. But sometimes people disparage Paganism, or faith in general, or something else we believe in. And when that happens, we are positively PO’d, but not necessarily positive. We tend to call people out on their #$%& in this regard rather than try to find the goodness in their asshatery (though I have tried). —
- Be grateful. We are very grateful for the Realm! And we are grateful to those who have contributed to the blog content, design and artwork. We have been thrilled by the support readers have given and excited by the opportunity to contribute to the dialogue about Paganism. If we haven’t thanked you enough before…thank you so much for reading and sharing our posts!! ✔
- Forgive. This one is tricky. Forgiveness is not an edict in our faith. We don’t believe human foibles require forgiveness, divine or otherwise. For us, it’s not about forgiving, it’s about not causing or adding drama in the first place. From this perspective, I think both of us are pretty good at it. We get passionate about issues, but we’re not running around harboring anger at people for insignificant things. But we reserve the right to hold a grudge against significant offenses. See secret skill number 2 re: getting PO’d. We tend to stay PO’d at asshatness. —
- Choose to be happy. I can say with confidence that we choose to be happy. We Princesses may be descended from Visigoths, but we our goth is more Buffy tVS than Bauhaus (considered to be the first gothic rock band). And we like to share our happy through parties and celebrations. You should come join us on our next outing. (Announcement coming soon!) ✔
- Do things that are meaningful. Yes! We Princesses are committed to two posts a week every week and we love it. It’s work, let me tell you, but it is satisfying. We are also fortunate enough find fulfillment in our 9-to-5 gigs, too. Jax recently announced her good news as a fiction writer. And I landed a terrific new job at the end of last year. Our professional and posting lives are chock-full of meaning. And we are very glad about this. See secret skill number 3. ✔
- Be considerate of others. Aside from calling people out on asshatation, we try to be very considerate of others in this blog, especially other faiths. Part of our mission is to celebrate our holidays while including our kith and kin of other faiths. We do our best to treat other faiths with the respect we want for Paganism and we ask the Realm to follow our lead. ✔
Five out of seven check marks! Not bad, I think. So, I’d say on a scale of…oh, I don’t know, one to seven, we Princesses rate a five on happiness. Yay happiness! Admittedly, though, we are skeptical of trying to codify a feeling. Regardless of any checklist, we Princesses consider ourselves happy.
What about you Realm? Are you happy based on these Secret Skills of Happiness. Hmph. I guess they really aren’t secret since TGO and The Oracle (and now the Princesses) are blabbing them all over the Internet. Yay blabbing!
* I thought it necessary to include my methods for ranking these skills since I bragged about being trained in measurement and methods. Here’s what I did, in the order I did it:
- Listed out all the secrets to happiness identifying the bullet number (from above) and the rank from the original source.
- Placed all repeating secrets side-by-side so I could see how many times each secret was cited.
- Sorted by the number of times a secret was listed and by its rank to find the top seven.
Being a geek, I did all of this in MS Excel. I’m happy to share my research, just post a comment to request the file. Be sure to include an email address where I can reach you when you leave your comment (not in the actual comment, but in the “registration” to leave a comment).
+ Featured image borrowed from this site.