Every year, people make a New Year’s Resolution list and then don’t do it. One of my friends suggested making ONE “New Year’s Promise” and sticking to it, something that would truly improve your life. Well, this year I’ve made two promises, but both of them will benefit me (and others) a great deal.

One is personal, and has to do with daily devotions. So far, so good – and I’m enjoying reading my Bible, too!

The other is this:

“Bring Happiness, Not Misery.”

That seems… odd, doesn’t it? But think about it. There’s so much awfulness in our world that I don’t need to contribute to it in any way. I realized, waking up the morning after Christmas, my pillow tear-stained thanks to a terrible twist in one of my former-favorite British dramas, that the show had ceased to bring happiness into my life and instead brought me misery. I hated that realization. I hated that feeling. And I hate the writer who did that to me.

So, as a writer, I vow never to do that. I want people to read my stuff and for it to bring happiness into their lives. I want them to laugh, have fun, and look forward to the things I write, not have them sobbing into the midnight hours and cursing my very existence. That’s no way to be.

But as much as this promise is about others, it’s also about me. I’m going to do things for my own enjoyment, to please no one else. For whatever reason, possibly because I think so little of myself, I don’t do things just for me… and I’m going to start. I’m going to paint my fingernails whatever color I want, for no reason whatsoever. I’m going to do whatever I want with my hair, whether or not anyone likes it. I’m going to read books that make me happy, whether or not anyone else thinks they’re “good.” I’m going to buy those inexpensive items that I love, even though I have no logical reason to do so, other than they delight me. And I’m going to talk about the things I love, even if no one else loves them!

So far, in the last week, I’ve had my parents build me a new desk in my office so I can start crafting again. I’ve painted two desks, one wall, and a cabinet a gorgeous shade of blue that makes my heart sing. I’ve played my Phantom of the Opera CD so loud the cat hid under the bed. I bought three things the other day that simply made me smile. 2013 is going to be about me being creative and finally using the gifts God gave me – to spread joy, in myself and in others. I’m so often depressed, I need to find happiness in life. I need to trust Him more. I need to take chances.

In the coming days, weeks, and months, I’ll do my best to spread happiness. Maybe you can even do it with me.

20 thoughts on “Happiness

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  1. Your happiness makes me smile. There are days I know who I am and what I like, and there are other days when I don’t think I like anything, or that everything I do like is pointless. Be happy this year. Live your life and love every moment of it. At the moment, I don’t feel like anything I’ll do this year will have any positive effect. But your post and your new layout made me smile, so your promise for the new year seems to be working. *hugs*

    1. Pointlessness is something I struggle with — it’s the blight of an INTJ. “This is pointless, why do it?” Um, because it makes you happy? Because it’s not about being productive ALL THE TIME?

      Don’t go into 2013 with a defeatist attitude. Go into it looking for ways you can make a difference. Go into it prepared to come up with grand ideas. =)

      (( hugs ))

  2. Your resolution/promise for this year is awesome! I like the idea of bringing happiness to others and for yourself a lot for all of the reasons you mentioned. I think I’m on something of the same tangent for this year as well; 2012 wasn’t a very good year for me IRL and at the end I told myself that 2013 will be better, happier *nods* Best of luck with all your creative projects and all things happy this year! 😀

    I’m honestly scared to check out the British-drama-that-shall-not-be-named =/ I pre-ordered the DVD for my mum’s birthday (birthday has already passed, DVD is not arriving until the end of the month lol) and my parents are looking forward to it ;_;

    Love your new layout here! All the different shades of blue are making me happy 🙂

    1. 2012 had its ups and downs for me. There were some magnificent ups (like the 100 year anniversary of the TITANIC, buying a big screen television, having Halloween tea at the Molly Brown House) followed by some big downs — certain relatives visiting, having my television break down, and getting angst from potential boy-friends. This year WILL be better, if I have to hogtie it and flog it into place. Heh.

      Go ahead and watch it, just stop two minutes before the end of the last episode, after Matthew leaves the hospital. Then you can remember it with fondness instead of wanton misery and sobbing.

      Blue is… very spring-like and … well, it’s just great.

  3. First of all, I almost squealed when I saw this (and I did inside) new layout! I adore it!!

    Yikes, I forgot I was going to make it a point to read my Bible every day. I shall start that today.

    I like your idea of making others and yourself happier. I think I may make that my goal as well. 🙂

    Oh, and speaking of writing, I think there’s nothing wrong with sad bits as long as there’s a purpose. I’m thinking of Where the Red Furn Grows, specifically. That book ends on a very hopeful note, even it does make me bawl every. single. time I read it.

    1. Oh, gosh, me too. It’s an awesome color!! Blue makes me happy.

      I remember because it’s the first thing I do in the morning, and I don’t want to fall behind on my chronological one year Bible. (It’s awesome — I highly recommend getting one, even though it makes me go, “Huh?” sometimes because the ancient texts are not always in the right order! So in one chapter, God’ll say, “Men are too sinful, I’m going to cut their lives to 100 years…” and in the next, you have a list of men who lived to be 900 years old. LOL) Mine’s the NLT and I love it — especially where Pharaoh is like, “Why didn’t you tell me Sarai was your wife? TAKE HER AND GET OUT!”

      Awesome! Making people happy is a lovely feeling. I’m going to make plans of all sorts, to surprise people and brighten their day. *rubs hands together gleefully*

      I suppose not. I mean, I love the Harry Potter series even though I bawl through all the deaths. It’s the pointlessness of sad writing that really gets to me — hence, why I quit watching Nicholas Sparks movies. I know how the plot will go — two people fall in love, one dies from a horrible accident and/or cancer, just so the reader spends the last half of the book bawling. Meanie!

      1. As soon as I help Jill with her puzzle, I’ll go find my Bible and curl up with it. 🙂 And yes, first thing in the morning is best for me, too.

        Yes, I don’t read/watch anything that has to do with Sparks. I read a funny blog post comparing all the plots of his books and it was spot on. They’re too fluffy, anyway, even apart from the sadness in all of them.

  4. Can I just say I LOVE LOVE LOVE the new layout?? It’s the most gorgeous, refreshing shade of sky blue ever!

    Your resolutions–promises?–sound awesome!

    What your cats don’t like POTO? 😛 Mine usually don’t mind when I play music–including opera. Now, if I try singing…well, that usually sends them fleeing for cover 😛 .

    So…is this tear inducing British drama…the same one I’m thinking of, because I spent the hours late Christmas night feeling sick to my stomach at the thought of how I was now going to have to give up one of my formerly favorite shows…..

    I applaud you on the nail polish and hair decisions! I cut my hair earlier this week–er–year–and it got some raised eyebrows–but I still like it 😛 .

    Good luck and happy new 2013!

    1. I KNOW, RIGHT?? This must be a new layout, or I would have used it before! I love the colors — the background almost matches the shade of my new desk.

      My cat likes PotO provided it is not so loud the house shakes. Oops. She REALLY likes Josh Groban. He has a soothing effect on her…. in retrospect, maybe I should play him all the time, so she isn’t such a headcase!

      Um… does this show revolve around a certain large British estate? If so then yes, that’s the one I am thinking of. I would say something horrible about its author but I’ve promised to be a harbinger of happiness, so… Doctor Who was pretty awesome, all-around. I guess that somewhat makes up for it, right?

      The nail polish may have to wait until I’m done painting, since the wall paint seems to be doing a fabulous job of painting my nails all by itself. Good for you on the haircut. I cut mine not long ago, but I think I might go back and have it reshaped a bit, put some more sass in it.

      You too! =)

  5. Wow! Goodness, I’m sorry you’ve been more depressed than happy in the past – good for you in making that a “resolution” – or “promise.” Stick with it, girl! 🙂

    Love what you said about writing too – I hate it when writer’s kill off beloved character’s or make us sad instead of leaving us with a smile. The latter is so much more pleasant.

    1. Depression runs in the family. I’m prone to it, even more so because I’m a creative personality type and get bored easily. But 2013 is going to be an awesome year. =)

      I’m coming to understand Stephenie Meyer’s reasoning in how she ended the Twilight Saga — no one dies. That seemed like a fault at first, like she should have had an epic showdown, but … she was spreading happiness through her series, not realism. In the movie, we see the consequences of what an epic showdown would left us with… and I’m glad she loved her characters enough not to kill any of them off. I wish more authors felt that way!

      1. It’s not quite that simple, though. Some authors love their characters but still kill them off. To take an example near and dear to me, it nearly broke Dickens’s heart to kill Little Nell in “The Old Curiosity Shop,” but her death was integral to the story he was telling, and he had to do it.

        No one hates senseless and gratuitous character deaths more than I do. But not all character deaths fall under that category.

        Getting back to your original post, I like your point about doing what makes you happy without trying to please others. C. S. Lewis would have agreed with you (see the redemption of Mark Studdock in “That Hideous Strength,” for example!).

        1. I’ve killed off my characters before — it gave me no pleasure, but it had to be done. But sometimes, I do think authors kill off characters needlessly.

          1. … that’s actually the couple I was thinking of! =P

            Of course, you could add Elizabeth Gaskell to the list — the deaths of so many characters in her books make them so terribly sad!

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