If You’re Happy and You Know It, Clap Your Hands!

Happy People

If you’re over 50—or if you’re currently enrolled in kindergarten—you’ll  know the title is from a song. Although whether we’re really happy or not may not be a simple thing to know, we all clap our hands anyway.

But how do we know if we’re happy, technically speaking? Well that’s a matter for experts to examine, including Dan Buettner, a National Geographic Fellow and bestselling author on the subject of living long, healthy & happy. I’ve read Buettner’s articles and many others about happiness—took a whole college course in psychology focusing on what makes happiness tick—and I’ve come up with my personal best list.

Top 7 ways you know if you’re happy:

  1. You laugh a lot. Like every day. Multiple times a day. Sounds simple, right? But really think about this one before you answer it for yourself. How often do you laugh? (Also, how often do you cry?)
  2. You like going to work every day. Especially if you’re like me and you don’t have to go anywhere! It’s no surprise that a long commute can be a big negative in people’s lives according to Buettner. It’s also no surprise that liking your job can make you happy.

    But did you know that you don’t even have to like your job to be happy  if you like the people you work with? 

    In fact, according to Buetner and others, liking your fellow employees and having friends at work is more important than making more money. I can personally attest to the truth of this!

  3. You have a great social network and get together with friends/family often. Everyone agrees about how important the people in your life are to your happiness, right? Maybe it’s hard to put this into practice in  every day life, but those who do are happiest.
  4. You are healthy. While it’s not something we think about, according to statistics, it is harder to be happy when you’re unhealthy. So don’t take this one for granted.
  5. You make a decent living. No need for riches. But just in case, I did buy a Powerball ticket when the jackpot went to $625 million yesterday. It would be a kick to play Santa Claus with all that money. Which brings me to the next tell for happiness.
  6. You focus on others with acts of kindness, helpfulness, care, donating and/or volunteering. Or maybe you’re there for someone with a shoulder to cry on in a tragedy. Of course, you probably already know how these things can make you feel all warm and fuzzy.
  7. Life Balance. You have the right amount of work, socializing and sleep—and all those other personal care things to keep you healthy, like staying active. This is no news for anyone who spends too much time at work, or too much time sitting around. Or not enough time sleeping!

Now that you know, what are you going to do about it?

I’m going to work on getting more sleep!

Tell me what you’re going to do to improve your happiness.

 

Eleven Short Stories

If you’re like me you have oodles of friends who constantly send you lists of jokes (at least ones they think are funny), pictures of unusual “combinations” for example the offspring of a Pekinese puppy who mated with a Siamese mother cat.( and yes, the dog/cat was adorable.) I rarely pass them on. But the eleven “short stories” below hit me in a special place.  The place that make us think twice about the daily happenings in our lives as we deal with others! They also made me think you might enjoy them too. Besides, as an author, I couldn’t help but think that a number of the “short stories” could be a heck of a beginning or the end of a powerful full-length story.

 1.  Today, I interviewed my grandmother for part of a research paper I’m working on for my Psychology class.  When I asked her to define success in her own words, she said;

“Success is when you look back at your life and the memories make you smile.”

2.  Today, after my 72 hour shift at the fire station, a woman ran up to me at the grocery store and gave me a hug.  When I tensed up, she realized I didn’t recognize her.  She let go with tears of joy in her eyes and the most  sincere smile and said;

“On 9-11-2001, you carried me out of the World Trade  Center .”

3.  Today, after I watched my dog get run over by a car, I sat on the side of the road holding him and crying.  And just before he died;  

he licked the tears off my face.

4.  Today at 7AM, I woke up feeling ill, but decided I needed the money, so I went into work.  At 3PM I got laid off.  On my drive home I got a flat tire.  When I went into the trunk for the spare, it was flat too.

A man in a BMW pulled over, gave me a ride, we chatted, and then he offered me a job.  I start tomorrow.

5.  Today, as my father, three brothers, and two sisters stood around my mother’s hospital bed, my mother uttered her last coherent words before she died.

She simply said, “I feel so loved right now.  We should have gotten together like this more often.”

6.  Today, I kissed my dad on the forehead as he passed away in a small hospital bed.  About 5 seconds after he passed,I realized it was the first time I had given him a kiss since I was a little boy.

7.  Today, in the cutest voice, my 8-year-old daughter asked me to start recycling.  I chuckled and asked, “Why?”  She replied, “So you can help me save the planet.”  I chuckled again and asked, “And why do you want to save the planet?”

Because that’s where I keep all my stuff,” she said.

8.  Today, when I witnessed a 27-year-old breast cancer patient laughing hysterically at her 2-year-old daughter’s antics, I suddenly realized that, I need to stop complaining about my life and start celebrating it again.

9.  Today, a boy in a wheelchair saw me desperately struggling on crutches with my broken leg and offered to carry my backpack and books for me.  He helped me all the way across campus to my class and as he was leaving he said,

“I hope you feel better soon..”

10.  Today, I was feeling down because the results of a biopsy came back  malignant.  When I got home, I opened an e-mail that said, “Thinking of you  today.  If you need me, I’m a phone call away.”

It was from a high school friend I hadn’t seen in 10 years.

11.  Today, I was traveling in Kenya and I met a refugee from Zimbabwe.  He  said he hadn’t eaten anything in over 3 days and looked extremely skinny and unhealthy.  Then my friend offered him the rest of the sandwich he was eating. 

“The first thing the man said was, “We can share it.”

I am glad I have ‘you’ to send these to.

These are worth passing on…hope you enjoy them as much as I did!

If you are interested in a book that you will definitely want to pass on to fellow readers who love books that keep you reading into the night, determined to read every last word, may I recommend:

Aces Wild: Sizzling Historical Romantic Suspense

 Praise For ACES WILD:

“They call him Angel, but every woman he meets sees the devil in his eyes.” J. John

“If they needed men smarter than hell and as violent as their adversaries, even the mob turned to Angel’s Avengers” Action Junkie

“She’s temptingly innocent; he is savagely sexy. Neither one plans on falling in love.” Lisa Takamiya

“When the infamous Tong leader’s family is threatened by a vicious killer, he turns to Angel’s Avengers. As the danger escalates so does the attraction between the would-be savior and the young woman he’s hired to protect.” David Adams

A Year Later

I hope you all had a wonderful Valentine Day.

While we celebrated Valentine Day in our special way with loved ones, family or friends, the teenagers of Parkland held a day of remembrance to pray for their lost friends and promise they will never forget them. My grandchildren live in Parkland and were a mile away in their own school when the shooting took place.

One of the survivors, a lovely young woman only 17 last year, was interviewed in the Parkland Lifestyle magazine and explained how she overcame the trauma and her fears. She needed to show the world that this drama could not be repeated again. I was so impressed by the article I’d like to share some of its thoughts with you.

The day after, this MSD senior talked to her congresswoman and organized a march. “This happened at my high school. I had to do something. I’d wake up at 6 a.m. and slept at 2 a.m. I made so many phone calls. I contacted the bus companies, the parents, chaperones, reached out to the Civic Center in Tallahassee, organized cots from the Red Cross… “

Many more marches followed in the “Road to Change”. Those young people, not even 18 yet, explained they didn’t want to take guns away. They had conversations about extreme risk protection orders or universal background check or disarming domestic abusers. People would say, “Oh I can get behind that.”

People were receptive and the students felt America was behind them to protect the children in school. It’s amazing how fear can create courage.

This is not a political post, but a salute to my grandchildren, their classmates, friends and team members from various sports and activities.

You are still very young but you can make our world a better place.

Here are two new boxes of romance and a free one to enjoy:

UNFORGETTABLE PASSION: Unforgettable Charmers Available at Amazon

 

SWEET AND SASSY IN THE SNOW Available at Amazon

 

 

Unforgettable Valentine

UNFORGETTABLE VALENTINE — FREE this week Available at Amazon

 

 

When Authors Chat It Up

The jokes on social media that January 2019 seems like it’s never going to end are plentiful, but happily there’s a positive light here at Mimi’s Gang, just a few days away.

The heads up: We at The Authors’ Billboard have been ultra-busy brainstorming since the Holidays for 2019, planning entertaining anthologies with happily-ever-after’s and super cool contests designed with our readership in mind.

Our new anthology SWEET AND SASSY IN THE SNOW: Find Your Winter Romance! is on pre-order status NOW, and goes live January 31 – a set you’ll eagerly look forward to reading. Free on Kindle Unlimited or just 99 cents.

What’s it about?

Spirit me away from icy loneliness, shelter me with warm hugs, and cover me with soft kisses. From Navy aviators to bad boy escorts, lawyers and park rangers to exotic dancers, join our troupe as they battle betrayals and kidnappers, strong emotions and challenging weather to survive and find comfort in each other’s arms. Sweet and Sassy in the Snow: Find Your Winter Romance!

https://www.amazon.com/Sweet-Sassy-Snow-Winter-Romance-ebook/dp/B07MQS5K5K

My story for this anthology is called DRIFTING INTO LOVE: The Triplets Trilogy, and the first of a new three story set I’m working on for other anthologies, and also available as stand alones.

What’s it about?

After a precocious pooch wanders into Zoey’s yard during a blizzard, she discovers an unconscious forest ranger hurt in a snowmobile accident. After a successful struggle back to her cabin, the two are stranded with no cell service, and only each other’s company to pass the time until help arrives.
Will placing trust in the handsome stranger provide the solace Zoey seeks once her secrets are revealed? Does confronting the past together enable the young woman to reconnect with the family she hasn’t seen in a decade?

Exclusively on Amazon:

Pre-order here: https://www.amazon.com/Drifting-Into-Love-Triplets-Triology-ebook/dp/B07N5LXB63

As for me, marking my personal goals for 2019 after the Holidays were lost in the zero zone – “My muse took a hike, it was riding its bike – I thought it left town, hadn’t felt it around.”

Then, after chatting it up with the other ladies in our group, I felt rejuvenated. Long story short, there’s something to be said for being associated with a collection of caring, enthusiastic ladies with similar aspirations in mind. SUffice to say, I am blessed!

Speaking of hearts, please keep in mind we have several romance anthologies available containing full length books and novellas from NY Times and USA TODAY Bestselling authors for Valentine’s Day!

Exclusively on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0792GQPM8/ref=dbs_a_def_rwt_bibl_vppi_i7

Unforgettable Valentine

Exclusively on Amazon:

https://www.amazon.com/Unforgettable-Valentine-Hearts-Love-Unforgettables-ebook/dp/B0797ZPS36

One more thing: Did you know we’re running a giveaway? Are you interested in winning gift cards, print books, or free eBooks? To find out more details on this month’s contest, click here! https://authorsbillboard.com/

Good Luck, Ladies!