My Happiness Project

I just started a new project. A personal one. This is how it looks:

VidyaSury CollectingSmiles

What you are looking at is a Jar with a smiley stuck on it. Under the smiley, there’s a little strip that says “Thank you, Betsy at The Zen Mama, for the inspiration”.

Collecting smiles

Starting October 15, 2011, here’s what we have decided to do: Each time something makes us happy, we’ll write it down in a slip of paper and put it in this jar. This means we will consciously appreciate every little thing. We’ll watch the jar fill up. At some point, it may not even be necessary to open the jar and read each slip, though we’ll do that too. Just seeing it fill up will be motivating, inspiring.

If we have a problem or if we’re upset about something, we’ll discuss it, disperse the sadness, find solutions and take action to feel better.

As I said earlier, this was inspired by Betsy’s post titled “Take Two Smiles and Call Me In the Morning” which, I think, is a must read for everyone.  Besides the superb title and some beautiful quotes about smiling and laughter, Betsy explains the benefits of smiling.

A smile is the light in the window of your face that tells people you’re at home

are really not interested in the theory behind why you should smile – that’s okay. Just know that when you smile – it improves your face value. Not convinced? Here are ten reasons to smile.

Have you noticed that people are attracted to you when you smile? They invariably respond involuntarily with a smile… unless their mind is preoccupied and they’re not really looking at you or they belong to the rare species that prefers to stay glum, no matter what. Also, when we need information, we look around and usually approach someone who has a pleasant expression or is smiling. We’d rather not go disturb someone who looks morose or irritated.

A smile is a curve that sets everything straight – Phyllis Diller 

Children are experts at this. They tend to hang around with people who are nice to them. So what is so unnatural about that? Every one needs love and affection. That they may not reciprocate is a different story.

When you smile, laughter is just a few steps away. It is true what they say about laughter being the best medicine.

Be happy. Be healthy. Bobby McFerrin had a point when he sang “Don’t worry, be happy”

Here is a very simple exercise that will make you feel good and raise your mood. Check it out.

And don’t forget to Smile – It’s the second best thing you can do with your lips.

Thank you for subscribing to my blog! Do consider leaving a comment – or just reply to this email! I’d love to know what you think.



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  • Reply
    Betsy at Zen-Mama
    October 18, 2011 at 2:14 pm

    The other day I wondered out loud to my husband, “I wonder who is reading my posts and if it’s helpful?” (He always calls the positive comments I get “my paycheck”.) He answered back, you’ll get your paycheck soon, don’t worry!”

    Well, reading your post was my paycheck today. Thank you so much! I was amazed, humbled and inspired by you to continue my journey of writing. I hope someday to meet, but in the meantime, I’m so glad you’re blogging friends!!

  • Reply
    My Inner Chick
    October 18, 2011 at 9:26 pm

    “““It’s the second best thing you can do with your lips? What’s the first, Vidya?!

    Love your smile project. Love you, too. X

  • Reply
    Vidya Sury
    October 18, 2011 at 5:00 pm

    Thank you so much Betsy. I feel great when I can convert my inspiration into action and make things better. Am so excited about this activity, I’ve been telling people about it and a few kids I know now have what they call the “Zen Mama Jar”

    How is that? I am thrilled about connecting, too. 🙂

  • Reply
    Vidya Sury
    October 19, 2011 at 3:30 am

    Dear Kim, 🙂 Take a wild guess about the first thing…. MMuah!Hugs to you!

  • Reply
    Dionna @ Code Name: Mama
    October 20, 2011 at 11:20 am

    That is such a sweet idea! What a wonderful way to be conscious of everything life blesses us with every day 🙂

  • Reply
    Vidya Sury
    October 20, 2011 at 11:35 am

    🙂 Thanks for stopping by Dionna. Am happy to say my son’s busy putting something into that jar every day.

  • Reply
    Unknown Mami
    October 22, 2011 at 4:21 am

    You made me smile.

  • Reply
    Vidya Sury
    October 22, 2011 at 4:28 am

    🙂 Unknown Mami, you’re a favorite with me.

  • Reply
    My Inner Chick
    January 7, 2012 at 3:44 pm

    –You. ROck. ALl. The. Way. To. America.

    Xxx Kiss. Love.

  • Reply
    Vidya Sury
    January 7, 2012 at 3:57 pm

    Hugs, Kim, for coming back and visiting this link. I am in love with this project. And I am in love with you. Smooch!

  • Reply
    June 30, 2013 at 10:13 pm

    This is a really wonderful idea. My Dad was sitting with me when I got your reply in my inbox from your other blog post. And even he went “WOW”! We’re going to make our own Happiness Jar! 🙂
    Chicky recently posted…Mom’s Recipes: Photo A Day – Handwriting

    • Reply
      Vidya Sury
      June 30, 2013 at 10:18 pm

      That’s wonderful, Chicky. And I’ll tell you a secret – when you start jotting down the little things, you’ll never run out of topics to write about. 🙂

      Please do thank your Dad for me.

      Hugs, Vidya
      Vidya Sury recently posted…Moving By Faith And Intuition

  • Reply
    July 2, 2013 at 12:53 pm

    Wonderful idea! But at my place, I’ll be the only one putting in notes and reading through them. 😀
    REKHA recently posted…Jaipur – A Picturesque tour (Part I)

    • Reply
      Vidya Sury
      July 2, 2013 at 1:08 pm

      Hi! Rekha! 🙂 Then, would you try this, just once? Place the jar/container where everyone at home can see it. Add your notes. You’ll generate curiosity. And seeing the jar fill up, the others will want to participate. Slowly. But steadily. 🙂 I’ve seen that happen! Be prepared for a little teasing, initially, though. If you are keen on others participating, write a few notes praising those people. When they check your notes… 😀 You know what to do. I really appreciate your coming by!

  • Reply
    July 29, 2013 at 12:26 pm

    What a brilliant idea, Vidya! I have been reading a lot of positive psychology research and I think this is right up there with some of the very effective and doable ideas that have been suggested as a means for more positive living. Loved it to the core. Will be making one for myself 🙂

    Thanks a lot for sharing
    T recently posted…My Pretentious ‘I’m 25’ List

  • Reply
    August 24, 2013 at 3:03 pm

    What an excellent idea! I’ve come to your blog via Vishnu’s (virtues) and i’ve really enjoyed reading your posts. I know you posted this a couple of years now – is it still an on-going project?
    I’m going to start a gratitude project too, but with a slight twist, as I’ve got lots of wall and lots of spare post-its 🙂
    Hope you’re having an amazing day!

    • Reply
      Vidya Sury
      August 24, 2013 at 4:09 pm

      Hi! Li-ling! and welcome! Yes, I still maintain the Happiness Jar 😀 Would love to see your gratitude project – I do mine in a journal, though. 😀 Come to think of it, I have loads of blank stickers too. 😀 Have a lovely weekend!
      Vidya Sury recently posted…When the going gets tough

  • Reply
    The Power of Positive Posture - Vidya Sury
    May 28, 2014 at 4:10 pm

    […] I have more than 300 reasons to be happy now. Take a look at my Happiness Project! […]

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