Posts Tagged ‘Perspective’

7 Steps to Happiness

January 19, 2014

I watched the Broncos football game today and observed the faces of the players from both teams. Although it seems like “just a game” to me I know that it isn’t to the players…or the fans. 

Thinking about happiness reminded me of an article from Psychology Today from 1989. Below are the “Seven Steps to Happiness”. Here’s hoping that you are having a great Sunday no matter who wins the football game!

1Invest yourself in closeness: Of all the circumstances happy people share, loving relationships seem the most characteristic and most important. So when you’re setting your priorities, time for your loved ones should be No. 1. (I love Greg Roman! He loves me, his bar, Rhino’s Sports and Spirits. and the Broncos!)


2. Work hard at what you like: If love is most important to happiness, keeping busy at work you like may be second in importance. If your job doesn’t fit that description now (or look like it will in the near future), search hard for ways to find work that satisfies your very real need to do something that is meaningful to you. (I am so happy that I was able to write a book and learn so much at the same time! You can download the book from Amazon on January 24 and 25 and it will be FREE!)


3. Be helpful: Altruism builds happiness in at least two ways. Doing good makes you feel good about yourself. In psychological terms it enhances self-esteem. And there’s evidence that altruism relieves both physical and mental stress–thus protecting the good health so important to most people’s happiness. (The picture below shows a rescued cat who was returned to her owner in the arms of an amazing Humane Society Customer Service Representative name Carolyn.)


4. Make the pursuit of happiness a priority: All things may indeed come to he (or she) who waits, but why wait to feel good? Discover what makes you happy and make time to do it. (Hiking in Colorado with friends Linda Lewis and Mary Bartz!)


5. Energize yourself: Run, play a sport, dance–the choice is yours, as long as you keep aerobically fit. Whether the feeling of well-being produced by exercise is due to the release of endorphins–the brains natural painkillers–or something else, researchers agree that fitness is one reliable road to happiness. 


6. Organize, but stay loose: It’s good to know where you’re going and to make plans for fun along the way. But since novelty makes us happy, be ready to seize an unexpected opportunity to try something different.

7. Steady as she goes: We all have our nights and lows, but strive to a sense of perspective. Emotional intensity can be costly. Those who hit the highest highs tend to read the lowest lows as well.

What makes you happy?


Trapped in an elevator…and it could have been worse!

October 20, 2013

Greg, my fiancé and I made a trip to San Francisco to see my Uncle Alan, Aunt Barbara, my cousins, and some friends. We checked into the Marriott Hotel downtown and decided to walk around for an hour before we were going to meet everyone for dinner. We got on the elevator on the twentieth floor and pushed the button for the lobby. The elevator started down and then stopped. All the lighted buttons went dark and the elevator was eerily silent. For the first time I looked, really looked at the other people who were in the elevator with us. Two young children and a woman about my age. The little boy started pushing buttons and the older woman pulled his hands away.

It took us about 20 seconds to realize that we were stuck in the elevator. Greg checked his phone and saw that he had the number of the front desk. He called the manager and explained that we were stuck in the elevator. The manager said he would contact the Otis elevator technician and let us know when we would be getting out of the elevator. We were in between the seventeenth and eighteenth floors.

Our elevator-mates were 7 and 2 year old siblings from Toronto and their babysitter, a native from Taiwan and 22 year resident of San Francisco. After receiving a call from the babysitter, the children’s mother joined the manager at the front desk. Greg was told that the only certified Otis elevator technician in the city of San Francisco was already fixing two elevators and would get to the Marriott when he could. The babysitter and I thought we should call 911 but were overruled.

For the next two hours Greg, the babysitter, and I sang songs, taught the 7 year old how to play patty-cake, had thumb wars, played Simon Says then games on my iPhone, took pictures, ate snacks (the babysitter was very well prepared for this emergency) and learned some Chinese.

 After 90 minutes in the elevator the 7 year old announced that she needed to use the washroom. We high-fived because I needed to “use the washroom” too. We made Greg call the manager and tell him that there would be an emergency in the elevator if we didn’t get out soon. It was another 30 minutes before Greg got a call and we understood that we were going to be rescued. We felt the elevator being moved up manually and saw the doors being pried open. The kids ran into their mother’s arms and Greg and I walked up two flights of stairs to our room.

Now that I am safely out of the elevator I have been able to think about the experience. At the time I was crazed but acted like it was an adventure because we didn’t want to scare the children. (See the photos where we actually look happy!) Although we didn’t know if we might plummet to our deaths (I have since been told that this only happens in the movies, it doesn’t happen in real life) or how long we would be in the elevator, I am grateful that we were stuck with two delightful children and their babysitter. What if the elevator had been full with eight large men who had been drinking who were going to a sports event (we rode with them in an elevator the next day), someone who had gas or really had to go to the bathroom, a crying baby, well, you get the idea. We were lucky! The electricity stayed on and we had room to sit down. Our phones worked and the technician did show up. And yes, we did get a free night at the Marriott and we made it to dinner with my relatives 45 minutes late. Greg assures me that we will never get stuck in an elevator again…I can assure you that if there is a next time I am calling 911!

So, my blog post today is about perspective and preparation. Our experience could have been worse but here is the learning for me. The next time I get in an elevator I will make sure I have gone to the bathroom, have a bottle of water and snacks, and I will check out the people who may become my new best friends!ImageImageImageImage