9 Ways to Be Temporarily Happy

 Let's be honest- it's tougher to be happy in the winter than in the summer.  At least here in the Northeast, that's the case.  


  • It's cold.
  • The house is more dusty.
  • People get cranky.
  • All of the cars look like they need a bath.
  • Folks look pale.


If you've read Gretchen Rubin's The Happiness Project or Happier at Home, you know that certain behaviors make a real difference when it comes to happiness, especially in the winter.  

These behaviors can include making your bed in the morning, maintaining a clean home or any number of actions that just about anyone can try out.  Best of all, most of these are free!

Since winter here in New Jersey seems to be hanging on longer than we would like, I decided to try out some of Gretchen's tips to see if they would work.  Bear in mind, that as a person of faith, I was skeptical to try these out.

I was raised to believe that "true happiness" is only found in relationship with God.  The "small stuff"- that was soft and mushy, like tofu.  And who do you know that gets excited about tofu?  I had to integrate my faith into daily life rather than put the two opposite one another.

This is of course, a classic ninja move for anyone who wants to be a "Daily Saint"- integrating the ordinary with the spiritual.

To do this, I've spent a few weeks tracking the little things that make me happy.  These may not work for you but, temporarily at least, they sure do have an effect in my life.  

The list includes:


  • Gadgets- iPhone, iPad, etc.
  • Books on tape- I've gotten hooked on Vince Flynn's spy novels as of late.
  • Making my breakfast and lunch the night before
  • Arriving for church early rather than late
  • Drinking plenty of water
  • Being home by dinner
  • Cleaning my desk before I leave for home
  • Taking an extra five minutes for prayer in the morning
  • Reading with my kids before bed

Your list might be different and as they say, "results may vary".  The key is to try out different strategies.  They will probably give you a temporary boost as winter tries to hang on.  While it's true that our ultimate happiness lies in God, we can still enjoy the journey until we meet our final destination.

Photo courtesy of TMN