Sunday, April 27, 2014

There and Back Again, a Tale about Happiness

"'The time has come,' the Walrus said. 'To talk of many things: of shoes -- and ships -- and sealing wax -- of cabbages -- and kings -- and while the sea is boiling hot -- and whether pigs have wings.'" - "The Walrus and the Carpenter" by Lewis Carroll.

The time has come, my friends, to say goodbye, for this is my last blog posting.

The road to finding happiness is a long journey, and I don't think mine has ended quite yet. I believe that I have more pleasant surprises awaiting me just around the corner, and I hope that all of you have some coming your way as well.

I would now like to use this time to use some quotes to put a smile on all of your faces.

"A day without sunshine is like, you know, night." -- Steve Martin.

"We are all on this earth to help others; what on earth the others are here for I don't know." -- W. H. Auden.

"If love is the answer, could you please rephrase the question?" -- Lily Tomlin.

"Laugh and the world laughs with you, snore and you sleep alone." -- Anthony Burgess.

"Be obscure clearly." -- E.B. White.

"There is no better feeling in the world than a warm pizza box on your lap." -- Kevin James.

"All the candy corn that was ever made was made in 1911." -- Lewis Black.

"Happiness is having a large, loving, caring, close knit family in another city." -- George Burns.

"I intend to live forever. So far, so good." -- Steven Wright.

I hope that got a few chuckles, I know every single one of them got me to giggle, but that's also cause I'm Jane Morrell...and I'm silly.

I have enjoyed writing this blog, it has been an adventure within itself. I have grown so much within these past months, it is strange to think about how different I am now then I was when I started with my first post.

I would like to thank all my commenters for my blogs, that includes you too Kayak Girl.

For those who get the humor of the title of this posting, I give a smile and a wink.

And now I would like to say goodbye in person, so to speak:

Sunday, April 20, 2014

The Good Old Days

Hey everyone! Happy Easter!

Do you guys know what time it is? It’s finals week! Yay! ...Yeah, I’m not excited either.

Now, I could do a blog about finals, how they are stressful, awful, etc., and I could talk about not letting anxiety of finals get to you, but I’m going to be honest with you guys -- finals are rough, and it does get tiring when you’re constantly having to listen to someone tell you to be positive during finals week.

So to save myself from getting annoyed glares, I’m going to blog about a quick and easy way to make one feel instantly happy: nostalgia.

Ah, the “good old days,” whether it was just yesterday or eons ago, we all have a time in our lives that puts an automatic smile on our faces every time we think about them or we are reminded of them.

Old TV shows, food, pictures, games, movies, books, etc. the little things that we hold on to and that we tie in our minds to a better time, an easier time.

And with finals, an easier time is what we need right now.

So these next few weeks, try and take some time out of studying (you guys better be studying!) and watch that old show, or play that old video game, for a few minutes and re-live that time of your life where you felt safe, confident and, most importantly, happy.

Just don’t go overboard because you might get stuck in trying to bring back the past. Nostalgia is a strong drug, and should only be used in small doses.

To go with my blog posting, I’m going to show you a few pictures of my most nostalgic moments so please don’t laugh, or at least don’t tell me that you laughed.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Laugh Your Cares Away!

Hi, everybody! Today I’m going to talk about one of the strongest medicines in the world: laughter.

I would like to credit the topic of today’s blog to my brother Matt Morrell. He will explain why laughter is so important for pursuing happiness:

Audrey Hepburn once said, “I love people who make me laugh. I honestly think it's the thing I like most, to laugh. It cures a multitude of ills. It's probably the most important thing in a person.”

Laughter can lift up a person from the lowest pits of despair and bring them out into the sunshine.

I think it’s the only medicine that doesn’t taste bad…but it might give you the hiccups.

When you or your fellow friend(s) are down, laughter is an easy way to bring back smiles, and the best part is, is that everybody wins!

Now I will be the first to admit, that sometimes a joke can go a bit too far at times, so just try to keep things simple and fun. You don’t want to offend anyone.

But sometimes, as ridiculous as the joke or the hilarious event, you can’t help but laugh…unless it’s when someone falls down - that’s just mean.

I know it’s hard to feel good when you’re sad, lonely, mad, or scared. Heck with all that has been happening with my life, all the drama and stress with finals coming up, the whole concept of laughing and being happy can seem like it’s out of reach.

You have to keep going, through all that silly drama and worrying. You’ve got to just laugh it off; I promise you that it will all be okay in the end.

However long it takes, eventually you will have a smile on your face again.

“If we couldn't laugh we would all go insane.” – Robert Frost

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Treat Yo' Self!

Many pardons for the strange grammar of this weeks blogging title "Treat Yo' Self", I promise I have not lost my sanity. 

Recently I have been watching a TV show called "Parks and Recreation", which is a comedy about the parks and recreation department in a fictional town in Indiana called Pawnee. To give a brief description, it is similar in style with that of the once popular show: "The Office." 

If you liked "The Office" you might want to give this show a shot.

But enough about the show itself, my blog today is going to focus on an episode in "Parks and Recreation" called, you guessed it, "Treat Yo' Self."

In this episode, two supporting cast members that work in the department celebrate their annual "Treat Yo' Self Day" in which they -- here I'm going to let them explain it for you guys:

So what does this have to do with my blog? Well I think that Tom and Donna, the two characters in the show, have invented a new and genius idea: spending an one entire day out of the whole year to treat yourself to the things you love and make you happy.

Granted, they might have an expensive way of doing it and I want you to know that I'm not encouraging people to spend gobs of money buying clothes and other various objects.

What I like is the whole concept of "Treat Yo' Self."

I think that setting aside one day to be a tad bit selfish and reward yourself with the things you love to do the most, is a healthy idea because it gives one time to enjoy their uniqueness without judgement, as Ben, another character in the show, learns when he joins them on the quest to treat themselves.

I won't ruin the end for you, but it is worth a watch.

I think this is an idea that should be welcomed and further explored and I hope that at some point this year of 2014 that all of you will pick a day to "Treat Yo' Self."

Sunday, March 23, 2014

The Happiness Disease

Hello everyone! Are you ready for another awesome blog about happiness? I am...well that's because I'm writing it...yay for blogs!

Okay, I don't know about you guys but I can't stop singing Pharrell Williams' song "Happy."

 It's so catchy and it makes one want to dance around the room and anyone one around you automatically joins in, spreading this happiness across the room like a virus.

Which brings us to the topic of today's blog: happiness is like a disease.

I'm not trying to be dark here, but it is true when you think about it.

For example, when someone smiles at you and wishes you a happy day, it in turn gives you a warm feeling inside and you find yourself smiling and walking around to others greeting them in the same manner. The "happiness disease" then latches on to the next person and then goes from one victim to another after that. 

Happiness spreads like wildfire, when someone that you care about is overwhelmed with joy, you find yourself feeling the same. This is one disease in which the cure has not yet been found...because its awesome having the happiness disease!

Pharrell Williams knows what I'm talking about (I think he's cracked the secret of song making!). It's practically impossible to not be happy while listening to his song and you can't escape it because it plays everywhere you go!

Guys, I think Williams might have created a new plague! The Happy Plague! 

It sure beats the Black Death, wouldn't you agree?

So let's spread the happiness everyone; smile and be kind to others and your happy thoughts might lift up their hearts and they too will continue this happy fest.

It wouldn't hurt if we all danced like Williams as we spread the happy virus. Man, that guy is a great dancer!

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Think Different -- Think Positive

Hey everybody, how are you on this fine Sunday? I hope that all of are enjoying your spring break and are getting plenty of rest; I know I am.

This week, the focus of my blog is about choosing good attitudes.

Sometimes we get stuck in a stressful scenario and as a result we become angry or irritated as if the world is out to get us – we let it bring us down.

The sad part about of all of this is that sometimes it really isn’t as big of a deal as we think it is. Something as little as getting a B on a paper, isn’t the end of the world, and yet for some (myself included) it ruins our entire day or week.

So what should we do? – choose a better attitude.

Turn that B into something positive, its constructive criticism only designed to help you become better. B is an awesome letter! The word beautiful starts with B, so there you can tell yourself that that B on your paper stands for beautiful.

When working as a camp counselor, I was given the pleasure of watching an enlightening video exploring this very topic. A man named David Foster Wallace was giving a speech to graduating college students, and what he talks about really changed the way I look at things today.

I’ve uploaded his speech called “This is Water”, and I am apologizing for some mild language in the video beforehand. This is pulled from the actual video and I suggest all of you watch it and you can find it on Youtube.

But here is the audio for Wallace’s speech:

Apple Inc. once had this logo “Think Different” and I find it an appropriate phrase for this subject.

I challenge all of you to think different – think positive.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Blinded by the Sun...or by Happiness?

Hey everyone, it’s that time again for my Sunday blog!

I’m very sorry that I didn't post last week. It was a quite the busy weekend.

Well guys, this week I’m going to focus on something very serious.

Happiness is important; this has literally been my blog theme for the past two months.

But, sometimes in our efforts to finding happiness, we in turn become blinded by it.

It’s like being blinded by the sun.

At times we forget to think about others and think only to please ourselves.

And with every action there is a reaction, sometimes good…and sometimes bad. Sometimes people get hurt. Sometimes you get hurt, even if your action initially brought you joy.

It’s like eating this Gingerbread house.

When you see it, you can feel your taste buds start to dance. It’s as if you can hear it calling out “EAT ME, YOU KNOW YOU WANT TO.” 

You don’t just eat it, you scarf it down, and it tastes so amazing that you can’t help being happy. 

Smiling and laughing, you feel great!

Suddenly, you don’t feel so gleeful anymore; it’s as if you've got a giant rock in your stomach. You feel heavy, sick and gross.

And then, just when you think it couldn't get any worse, the creator of the gingerbread house walks over and sees that you've just eaten his or her masterpiece.

This is when you ask yourself, “Why did I do this to myself?”

At that point, you realize your mistake and how, not only are you in pain, but you also hurt another in the process…by eating their piece of art.

And then you ask yourself, “Why did I do this to him/her?”

But you know why – it’s because satisfying your own wants blinded you to the dangers and effects that would arise when you ate that gingerbread house.

This is one example of letting self happiness blind you. Sometimes is could be something small, like acting goofy with your friends in public and irritating other people.

Sometimes it can be very troublesome, like choosing to watch TV over studying for a test.

And here is where it gets even more complicated:

You could be the most caring person in the world, but on the road to happiness there is bound to be pain -- strangers, friends, family, and even you, will get hurt at some point.

We all have to make tough choices in order to progress in life and to reach happiness: should I go to school or start working? Should I this money or save it? Should I quit now or keep going? Is it better having short-term happiness or long-term happiness?

I’m sure you all have heard the saying, “Life isn't fair,” and it’s true.

But, that doesn't mean that you can’t try to make it as fair as possible. If you find yourself happy beyond this world but it’s at the expense of another, I ask you to try to find a way for both of you to benefit in your situation. It won’t work every time, but at least you tried and no one can look down on you for that.

In summary, don’t let your happiness blind you to what’s really important in your life.