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And the Pursuit of Happiness

The freedom to live your life in a way that makes you happy is one of the fundamental rights of Man. According to the U.S. Declaration of Independence, anyway. Sometimes it seems that everything and everyone does their best to drag us down, but we keep bouncing back.

If you go to the self help section of the bookstore or library, you’ll find dozens of ways to find deep and lasting happiness. Popular suggestions include meditation, exercise, decluttering your home, becoming a mentor, learning a new skill, etc. My feeling is that you should know yourself really well before attempting any of the suggestions. What makes an introvert happy probably won’t work for social butterflies, for example.

The third week of January is designated as the Hunt for Happiness Week. Here are seven things that bring people joy.

1. Friends

Friends always have your back. If you want someone to go out with, help you move, or just lend a sympathetic ear, a close friend is the Swiss Army knife of good vibes.

2. Family

For most of us, family is our first support group. A close-knit family helps each other overcome trouble and stay positive.

3. Pets

The right pet gives you purpose, which goes a long way towards being happy. They also reward you with unconditional affection, which is also pretty powerful.

4. Volunteering

Speaking of purpose, helping other people, adopting a cause, or just generally trying to leave things better than you found them can be deeply satisfying.

5. Hobbies

Hobbies are a way for us to totally indulge our passions. They are our treat to ourselves, our escape. This is the thing you work to support.

6. Travel

For most of us, travel is something we do for a vacation, where we’ve chosen the destination and the itinerary. Getting away from the everyday routines and worries can be very refreshing.

7. Work

It might pay well, use your talents, or earn you professional respect. If going to work makes you happy, great!

Didn’t see your favorite happy thing? You can do a more specific search from our home page. We have hundreds of mugs celebrating all kinds of stuff. Are you trying to motivate other people? Remember that U.S. orders of two or more mugs get free shipping. That should make you happy!