.59 cents for happiness

Today, if for some goofy, strange reason, your monthly income doubled, would you be twice as happy?  Would you put twice as much into your retirement fund?  Would you go on twice as many weekend adventures?  Would you buy twice as many coffee treats?  Researchers say NOPE.  They have studied and studied (yawn) and done more studies and have found time and time again that people who make twice as much money than another group are about 9% happier.  No, they don’t go on vacation twice as much.  No again, they do not buy twice as many expensive coffee treats and hold on to your hats, no, they do not put twice as much away for retirement.   WHAT?  9% happier, now here I was already deciding what envelopes I would choose to put all that “extra” money into.

Here is a little tid bit I read today:   Even young children, notorious for being bad sharers, were happier giving away goldfish crackers than enjoying them solo.

So if it is happiness you are looking for, think about sharing little amounts on a daily basis.  Yes, we all wrap up care packages for soldiers and college kids.  Sure, we give baskets of get well quick goodies.  I have no earthly idea why the US Postal service is so far in debt, as our family alone has sent hundreds and hundreds of thinking of you cards and postcards.  Doing all of those things makes us happy.  Sure you get a great big jolt of happiness when it is a big offering .  I saw some sales today…………………Mr. Right will be hot on the trail of gathering all those school supplies he likes to donate.   However, little bits of goodness here and there can make one pretty dog gone happy.

I don’t normal “share” what I did for a little random act of kindness.  Sort of takes away the goodness of the act if you go blabbing all over the place.  So today’s little act will not “count” for me.  While going into the grocery store, there was a man asking for spare change.  I don’t know if you know this about me, however, I live in a pretty bubble.  It makes me a bit nervous to be standing alone and asked/ begged for money.  Lucky me there were a couple of men standing there, digging in their pockets and I skirted around the scene.    Good for me.  SIGH, okay, so I put my kale and cilantro and sunflower seeds into my basket and headed to the checkout.  I really didn’t want to go out that same door.  However, I really didn’t want to walk around the entire store and through the parking lot to avoid an unpleasant, not completely washed man.   I don’t like giving money out.  Period.  I don’t like the feeling at all and it makes the person seem less somehow.  I get a weird feeling of “I am better than you”.  Urgh.     Thank heavens I have a brain!  I actually used it today.  I decided to grab a bottle of water for the trip home.  EXCEPT I GRABBED TWO.  Yep, I decided that I was thirsty, so might others be.  It is ridiculous to pay for a bottle of water.  It is wasteful with the plastic bottle.  It is down right expensive to buy water (do the math sometime, crazy, $6.40 per gallon).     I paid for my groceries and water.

I was happy to walk out the same door I walked in.  I did not have to be or feel weird.  I had my groceries in my reusable bags and a bottle of water in each hand.  As I walked by, I handed the man a bottle of cold water.  I told him I was trying to beat the humid air today.  I hoped he could stay cool as well.  Just a normal conversation.  Nothing goofy or strange.  Except, he got a bottle of water and I got a really good feeling of PURE HAPPINESS.

 In order to maximize your happiness, try giving in smaller amounts more frequently, rather than, say, an annual lump sum to your favorite charity, so you’ll get a spike in happiness each time.

For .59 cents my Happiness level spiked.  Pure goodness.  For just a brief moment in time, I bathed in Grace.  I made me feel happy.

Today, I am grateful for:  241.  bottled water  242.  being brave and using my brain  243.  kindness  244.  finding a plastic dinosaur in our car with a note from Mr. Right  245.  my thimble  246.  ability to hand sew  247.   a clean Golden Retriever  248.  coffee in an old chunky mug  249.  sticky notes  250.  spaghetti sauce simmering on the stove