How to Be Happy

I spend a lot of time meditating — I'm currently on a streak of meditating more than 120 days in a row, and while I am a little ashamed that I'm in a competition with myself to see how many continuous days I can go, I am more than a little compelled to just do it every day because it gives me unbelievable perspective. I am loathe to admit that I suffer from any type of diagnosable anxiety disorder, yet, I am a worrier through and through. It started when I was very young — I worried that my stuffed animals wouldn't know where I was all day when I left them to go to school; I worried that my siblings would be hurt while playing with friends; I worried about how the dog next door was handling the thunderstorm. In some ways, I see that childhood worry has transferred into a penchant for anxious behavior; and in many other ways, I am well aware that social media, my phone, and a constant pull to be distracted significantly enhance any disposition I might have to be anxious. So it is not without reason that I sought a way to mediate anxiety, and I am lucky that a daily meditation practice helps keep most anxiety at bay. What is pleasantly surprising about meditation is that it has poured over into my ability to be happier and my ability to minimize negative thinking. When I am focused on how transient each moment is, I come to appreciate them more, even when they aren't fun. All of this is to say, that the New York Times has a fabulous post up now about "How to Be Happy" and it's worth your perusal.