If you want to be happy, be. ~Leo Tolstoy
Like my Mamaw, I’ve kept a journal for many years. At times, I’m diligent about writing my thoughts every day. But when life gets in the way, weeks can go by without an entry. When that happens, I try to recall past events and play catch up. I realized this is probably why many people don’t journal, they don’t have the time.
During the holidays, a friend gave me a gift card to Barnes and Noble. Since I do most of my reading on my Kindle, I headed to the stationery section to check out their journals. Among a sea of leather bound books, I was thrilled when I discovered this.
The one sentence journal; it was perfect. After all, if I couldn’t record one sentence a day, how could I be a writer?
Similar to a gratitude journal, it’s a great tool to gain insight as to what really makes you happy. What I like the most is it forces me find something to be happy about, even on those days where anything that could go wrong, does.
Last week for example, after I started a load of laundry, the machine stopped working in mid-cycle. I was left with a full load of wet clothes, floating in detergent. We spent the next half an hour up to our elbows in icy water rinsing and wringing out the clothes.
Later when I sat down with the journal, through my frustration, I tried to think of something to be happy about. I wasn’t happy we were going to have to spend money on a new machine. Or that we would have to wash clothes by hand until a new machine was delivered. Yes, there are Laundromats in the area, but I’m a germaphobe. The thought of putting our clothes into a common washing machine…well, that’s a whole other post. After some reflection, my entry for that day: “I’m happy the washing machine didn’t create a flood, like the pipe that burst last year.”
Each day this little blue book makes me realize that my happiness doesn’t have to be based on what’s happening to me at the moment. I can find happiness in all situations. After all, life is so much easier when we’re happy.
What makes you happy?