Monday, December 31, 2012

2013 and My Happiness Project

When I read The Happiness Project several months ago, the task of actually taking on a Happiness Project for myself seemed overwhelming and thus unappealing. I was satisfied to take the bits of advice and here and there apply them to my life, with minimal guilt and potential for disappointing myself. Since I loathe New Year's Resolutions, starting my happiness project at the beginning of a new year seems even sillier. But, as a wedding photographer whose least busy months are January and February, this season really is the best time to undertake something like this, and life is too short not to start right here, now.

I'm currently reading Happier at Home, the follow-up to The Happiness Project, and I've really enjoyed keeping the constant motivation by reading bits here and there a few times a week (like yesterday when I was on the stationary bike at the gym, a task made much easier when I have a book to distract me); when I finished the first book I felt less motivated on a daily basis and while I should keep up with blogs on happiness when I'm not reading my delightful self help books, I've yet to subscribe via e-book and otherwise the wild jungle of the internet would distract me from ever getting around to reading the posts.

But, on to the actual project! Gretchen Rubin picks a different aspect of happiness for each month of her one year happiness project, and I've decided to do the same, though my months differ from hers a bit. If you are interested in taking on The Happiness Project as well, her website includes some downloadable resolution charts and other goodies even if you haven't read the book.

So that I can MAKE THINGS HAPPEN and get this posted before the start of the new year and thus my project, here's a look at some of my plans for the year ahead. I know that for this to be successful these goals will be reminders of what I need to focus on each month rather than a list of things I must do or else shame will befall me. I'm really excited to give myself that flexibility, too. Subject to change, here goes nothin'.


-Shelf by shelf
-Tackle a nagging task
-Follow the "one minute rule"
-Tidy up before I leave the office
-Set the timer for 15 minutes a day to clean
-Deep clean one thing a day

-Restart The Challenge
-Review Making Brands Happen Webinar workbooks
-Tackle a nagging task

-get organized in Quickbooks
-organize receipts
-evaluate spending habits
-spend no money this month
-make some extra money
-eat at home
-pay extra towards
-plan savings for France

-create list of shortcuts that would make life easier
-tackle the inbox
-create routines
-Organize totebag
-fully stock purse
-fully stock medicine cabinet

-work out
-drink water
-plan healthy meals
-no junkfood
-push myself
-get 8 hours of sleep

-Personal projects
-Read a book
-Creativity book and journal
-Free write or doodle
-Collect inspiration

-no nagging
-leave things unsaid
-proofs of love
-be light-hearted
-be appreciative

-watch French movies or tv
-Listen to French cds
-French flashcards
-French restaurants
-Find conversation partner
-read a book about France

-make revelations about myself
-define ideal life
-set bigger goals
-find a hero/idol
-try meditation

-tending list
-have lunch with friends
-send notes to people
-check up on friends
-update address book
-acknowledge birthdays
-be accountable

-wear happiness bracelet
-compliment someone
-say nothing negative
-no gossip
-flip negative situations
-reflect on Happiness and thankfulness

-share encouraging words
-donate time and money
-for photographer's blogposts
-happiness project blogging
-give away the happiness project and/or another helpful book
-compile resources from my happiness project

1. There is only love  (act with blind love)
2. Ask why. (what outcome am I seeking, why am I feeling an emotion, will this task/distraction increase my happiness or further my goals?)
3. DO IT NOW : Follow the 1 minute rule/only touch things once/make decisions
4. Slow down : be present in this moment, be intentional, be attentive and take interest
5. DO WHAT MATTERS AND BE DONE WITH ALL THE REST. Stop the glorification of busy
6. Revere daylight (for energy; to get things done before dark; Early to bed, early to rise; don't waste light, go take pictures now)
7. Get rid of anything that doesn’t bring you joy. (including social media feeds, clutter, ill-fitting clothes, people that suck your energy)


  1. This is inspirational Kelly. Thanks for sharing! I read half of The Happiness Project, and then got busy :/ But it would be really cool to do. It will be nice to follow your journey!

  2. What a great way to realistically tackle those goals. I'm starting to have more manageable goals as well - we will see how this year goes!

    Chic 'n Cheap Living

  3. Can't wait to start this book! Oh, and I just wrote a post on "why." I love that we are on the same wavelength, even if we aren't on the same continent! Love the commandments. They are so, so good.


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