Tag: Happiness

Veneration and Vulnerability: Suicide in the Midst of Prosperity

 

Man does not live by bread alone. As bread was being earned at a record clip, and more people got off the dole, more people in their prime years cut their own lives short. Reflecting back on the U.S. military’s Herculean effort to end suicide in the service, an unwon battle, I am painfully aware there is no clear solution, no magic pill or words. And. I wonder if our changing societal habits and beliefs make vulnerable people more vulnerable.

2017 brought unbroken good economic news, and not just for stockholders. President Trump repeated at every occasion the good news for everyone, including demographic groups who had been lagging in employment. Wages started to rise. And in the midst of all this, the suicide rate increased to a 50-year peak.

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Quote of the Day: Choosing

 

“When you wake up each morning, you can choose to be happy or choose to be sad. Unless some terrible catastrophe has occurred the night before, it is pretty much up to you. Tomorrow morning, when the sun shines through your window, choose to make it a happy day.” – Lynda Resnick

For me, the best thing about 2018 is that it is almost over. If I have had a worse year, I cannot recall it. My wife died, my father died, and my father-in-law (a man I have respected for nearly 50 years) will likely die before the year is out. I had to go to the emergency room in the middle of the night because of difficulties breathing. I have had money and job challenges.

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QOTD: Happiness

 

“Happiness belongs to the self-sufficient.“ Aristotle More

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Quote of the Day: Peale on Happiness

 

“Happiness will never come if it’s a goal in itself; happiness is a by-product of a commitment to worthy causes.” — Rev. Norman Vincent Peale

Is everybody happy? If not, dedicate yourself to a worthy cause. Go make a family. Get involved in a church. Quit your moping and move your feet.

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Quote of the Day: 24-FEB-2018 – The Importance of Joy

 

There are so many quotes about joy, and its place of importance in our society. Take joy in the small things, never let your heart be without joy, etc. The importance of joy has been expressly stated throughout religious texts and history. “Joy is the infallible sign of the presence of God.” ― Pierre Teilhard de Chardin […]

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Group Writing Project: Gratitude is a rock of life

 

I have been reading a good book lately about how Saint Augustine dealt with the search for happiness and how he went about ordering his desires so that a person could be truly happy. That got me thinking about how I need to order my desires to keep them in balance and that got me […]

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Apropos of nothing…

 

I came across this video of VJ Day in Honolulu. It’s not the anniversary of VJ Day, it’s not Veteran’s Day. Maybe it’s because I started watching The Man in the High Castle, a counterfactual account of the post WWII era. This three-minute home movie showing how ordinary people responded to VJ Day cheered me […]

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On Happiness: Compare Downwards, Not Upwards

 

People make mistakes – grave mistakes, even – like the time my wife bought me some coffee grounds which weren’t Starbucks French Roast. I was hopeful: given the scale of my coffee career we’d save a lot of money over time with the brand she was steering me toward. In any event, I took one sip, […]

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Words and Phrases Day 8: 90-Day Challenge

 

The Challenge: 10 cents has offered a challenge. This is an entry in completing my goal. The Background: I belong to a Unity Church. Unity was originally formed as a publishing company, Unity Tract Society, and publishing magazines and books has long been a large part of what Unity does. One of its long-time staple […]

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The Savanna Theory of Happiness

 

shutterstock_271118789Want to be happier? Simple: If you’re smart, dump some of your friends and move somewhere else. From Wonkblog in the Washington Post:

Hell might actually be other people — at least if you’re really smart. That’s the implication of fascinating new research published last month in the British Journal of Psychology. Evolutionary psychologists Satoshi Kanazawa of the London School of Economics and Norman Li of Singapore Management University dig in to the question of what makes a life well-lived …

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March Series: A Summer Wind

 

I cruise through life content most of the time. Occasionally, though, a peculiar convergence of sunshine, azure sky, gentle breeze, and felicitous song will deepen that outlook. For a few savory minutes, the contentedness mellows into a sense of serene pleasure. All the parts of my world have blended into a lovely tune. This happy confluence of elements occurred more than […]

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The Joy of Being Used

 

shutterstock_233760664Generosity is annoying. When a person is skilled or able in some way, others inevitably ask favors of him. A sense of charitable duty can make refusal difficult. Often, one is not feeling particularly generous when a loved one, coworker, or neighbor requests aid. Their needs are perceived as interruptions. But problems can’t be scheduled.

My brother is an IT wiz. It seems like hell. Anyone and everyone who runs into a problem even tangentially related to computers or electronics looks to him for help. To his credit, he always answers. With so many IT people offering free help to family and friends these days, it’s amazing anyone ever needs to pay for service!

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Is Happiness a Moral Obligation?

 

shutterstock_112916848Every Friday, Dennis Prager devotes an hour of his radio show to the subject of happiness, a subject he also wrote a book on. Last week, he raised some questions that got me thinking. One of his points was that true happiness is earned. Do you think this is true? I guess I’d say that sometimes happiness is earned, the type that is akin to pride in accomplishment. Sometimes it’s nice to think, “I did that, even if no one else appreciates it, it took struggle and work and I didn’t think I could, but I did that hard thing.” That’s a good, happy feeling.

But sometimes, happiness just kind of alights upon you in the moment. You don’t earn it, it just finds you. Maybe something you did or are allowed that moment to happen, so perhaps in a sense you earned it, but that sure isn’t always obvious to me. So I guess I’d argue with Dennis a bit on that one; I don’t think happiness is always earned. I know I really treasure those occasions, sometimes full days, when I just feel happy and contented for no obvious reason.

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Happily Engaged

 

RingOnce upon a time, there was this girl who didn’t see the wall this guy had built around his heart. She didn’t see the battle scars, nor the pain, but instead she looked right through the injuries and into the guy’s very soul. And she said, “There you are! I’ve been looking for you!”

This is where we push the pause button on our story, which by the way is as factual an account as if it had descended from Mt. Sinai on a stone tablet, in order to pass along some happy news. Yesterday, surrounded by family, I knelt before a woman whom I thought only existed in my dreams, and asked her to marry me. She said yes, and quick as a flash before she had time to reconsider, I gave her a ring along with my heart, happily and eternally.

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Are You Happy?

 

Are you positive? If not, you probably won’t be as successful as you could be. We often hear the refrain “Be positive,” but do we really take it to heart? Or are we too caught up in “being successful,” in “reaching the goal,” or in finding the right person to consider how important it is to be happy?

I recently watched a great TED Talk by Shawn Achor, CEO of Good Think Inc., a Cambridge-based consulting firm that researches positive outliers (people who are well above average) to understand where success and happiness intersect. Achor does an excellent job in this short talk explaining how important it is to think positively. What I liked is that he gives some real practical advice on how to get started. I also appreciated his argument that if we think success will make us happy, we will never really be satisfied — because the bar of success is constantly moving. 

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Happiness…On Turning 65 (with a little Worst at the end)

 

Today is my 65th birthday. For the past couple of years, when Hubby asks me what I want for my birthday, I can quite honestly say, “There’s nothing I need, just use your judgment”. When I look at my life, I really do have just about everything a person could want. A good job, a […]

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What’s Your Advice for A Happy Life?

 

Over the weekend, the Wall Street Journal ran a piece by Charles Murray adapted from his forthcoming book, The Curmudgeon’s Guide to Getting Ahead: Dos and Don’ts of Right Behavior, Tough Thinking, Clear Writing, and Living a Good Life, a volume that belongs on all sensible people’s bookshelves.

In the Journal column, he lays out five pieces of advice for living a happy life, which I’ve copied below along with brief excerpts of the accompanying explanations:

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Happiness: The Little Things

 

Large and lazy wind chimes humming in a spring breeze. A comfy chair on a back porch or patio; watching beetles and birds wandering through their daily routine. More

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Happiness – March 17 (Backdating)

 

Sometimes the greatest moments of happiness come after hard events, when we revel in our relief and unburden ourselves of the tension through which we have suffered. More

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