I see dumptrucks!

Posted: October 27, 2011 in The Warped Wiseman

The following is an excerpt from:  The Law of the Garbage Truck by David J. Pollay

 

“Sixteen years ago I learned this lesson. And I learned it in the back of a New York City taxi cab. Here’s what happened.

I hopped in a taxi, and we took off for Grand Central Station. We were driving in the right lane when all of a sudden, a black car jumped out of a parking space right in front of us. My taxi driver slammed on his brakes, the car skidded, the tires squealed, and at the very last moment our car stopped just one inch from the other car’s back-end.

I couldn’t believe it. But then I couldn’t believe what happened next. The driver of the other car, the guy who almost caused a big accident, whipped his head around and he started yelling bad words at us. How do I know? Ask any New Yorker, some words in New York come with a special face. And he even threw in a one finger salute! I couldn’t believe it!

But then here’s what really blew me away. My taxi driver just smiled and waved at the guy. And I mean, he was friendly. So, I said, “Why did you just do that!? This guy could have killed us!” And this is when my taxi driver told me what I now call, “The Law of the Garbage Truck™.” He said:

“Many people are like garbage trucks. They run around full of garbage, full of frustration, full of anger, and full of disappointment. As their garbage piles up, they look for a place to dump it. And if you let them, they’ll dump it on you.

So when someone wants to dump on you, don’t take it personally. Just smile, wave, wish them well, and move on. Believe me. You’ll be happier.”

So I started thinking, how often do I let Garbage Trucks run right over me? And how often do I take their garbage and spread it to other people at work, at home, or on the street? It was then that I said, “I don’t want their garbage and I’m not going to spread it anymore.”

I began to see Garbage Trucks. Like in the movie “The Sixth Sense,” the little boy said, “I see Dead People.” Well now “I see Garbage Trucks.” I see the load they’re carrying. I see them coming to dump it. And like my taxi driver, I don’t take it personally; I just smile, wave, wish them well, and I move on.”

 

 

How often do you see garbage trucks?

 

– Jay-T out

Advertisements

Little Albert

Posted: October 24, 2011 in The More You Know

If you’ve never heard of the ‘Little Albert’ experiment, it’ll be a nice read for you on google or youtube. In short, John Watson used loud scary noises to train a child to be deathly afraid of small white lab rats. But the outcome of the experiment resulted Albert’s phobia expanding to all other forms of anything furry and bipedal. Catastrophically, Albert had to leave the experiment before Watson was ever able to undo the childs fear.

 

So somewhere out in the world, there was a kid that was deathly afraid of almost any animal.

This person is not little Albert, but the results seem to be just as bad. Go ahead and watch a grown buff tattooed man sob at the sight of puppies.

Video credit: Animal Planet

What’s in a name?

Posted: October 15, 2011 in The Warped Wiseman

Have you ever stopped to realize how many things around you do you really own? Not just have in your possession, but actually truly own? What about your computer?  The microwave in your kitchen?  Your car?  Your iPod?  The truth is, we actually don’t own very much. We may have bought some things from vendors, but in today’s society, we really don’t truly own anything,  save one;

Your name.

You see, if you don’t make your regular payments on your house, car, or any other items you may have, you may find it to your dismay that they can easily be taken away from you and theres not a thing you can do about it. But your name can never be taken away. It stays with you forever, so you have to take extremely good care of it. A persons name is the easiest thing to soil.

Remember back when you were young, and there was always this kid that would pick on you or your friends. This kid made your stomach turn, and it wasn’t just the kid. Anyone could just mention the persons name and your stomach would turn. That name had been soiled for you.
Other soiled names would be:
         Adolf Hitler
         Saddam Hussein
         Timothy McVeigh

All of these names can have different effects on people. Even cause people grief. Yes, grief. Just by hearing a name.

Take care of your name. Make sure that the people you meet and talk to daily know by the sound of your name what kind of person you are. Don’t leave anyone with a sour taste for your name. Its the only thing you can really keep with you.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

– Jay-T out

You like sleep, I like sleep, everyone likes sleep, even though we don’t get near enough of it. Now, why is that? Are we just so wrapped up in everything thats going on that we can’t find enough time to re-charge our batteries? I know, I know. You have school, a part-time job, mountains of homework, friends, chores, etc. So? Are you willing to risk your health and happiness to keep everything on your plate? I think it’s time to cut something. Of course not work, or school, but something less important, like Facebook.

Here are a couple facts that make make you a little uncomfortable:

*17 hours of sustained wakefulness (that means staying awake for a long time without naps) leads to a decrease in performance equivalent to a blood alcohol-level of 0.05%. (That’s buzzed, guys)

*Any time less than 5 minutes to fall asleep at night means you’re sleep deprived. The ideal time is between 10 and 15 minutes, meaning your still tired enough to sleep deeply, but not so exhausted you sleep sleepy during the day.

*(You may be too young to remember these example)The 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill off Alaska, the challenger space shuttle disaster, and the Chernobyl nuclear accident have all been attributed to human errors in which sleep-deprivation played a role. (AKA, you could KILL people.)

*NRMA estimates fatigue is involved in 1 out of 6 fatal road accidents. (That’s a lot!)

*Exposure to noise at night can suppress the immune function even if the sleeper doesn’t wake. (As in, if you have the radio and TV on, it’s bad because your not getting enough sleep.) Unfamiliar noise, and noise during the first and last 2 hours of sleep has the greatest disruptive affect on the sleep cycle.”

*The “natural alarm clock” which enables some people to wake up more or less when they want to is caused by a burst of the stress hormone adrenocorticotropin. (Thats bad.) Researchers say this reflects an unconscious anticipation of the stress waking up. (As in, your are WAY too stress and need to relax or else you won’t get much good sleep.)

*Tiny luminous rays from a digital alarm clock can be enough to disrupt the sleep cycle even if you do not fully wake. The light turns off a “neural switch” in the brain, causing levels of a key sleep chemical to decline within minutes.” (This means night lights, lava lamps, and bright alarm clocks are bad. If you need a clock, have it facing away from you.)

*To drop off [into sleep] we must cool off. Body temperature and the brain’s sleep-wake cycle are closely linked. That’s why hot summer nights can cause a restless sleep. The blood blow mechanism that transfers core body heart to the skin works best between 18-30 degrees C. But later in light, the comfort zone shrinks to between 23-25 degrees C – one reason why older people have more sleep disorders.

* After 5 nights of partial sleep deprivation, 3 drinks will have the effect on your body as 6 would when you’ve slept enough. (So, having 3 alcoholic drinks is worse when your tired than when your not.)

*Teenagers need as much sleep as small children (about 10 hours a night) while those over 65 need least of all (about 6 hours). For the average adult aged between 25-55, 8 hours is considered optimal. (SEE!)

*Some studies suggest women need up to an hour’s extra sleep at night compared to men, and not getting it may be one reason women are more susceptible to depress than men.

*As a group, 18-24 year-olds deprived of sleep suffer more from impaired performance than older adults.

Lighthouse
(http://www.abc.net.au/science/sleep/facts.htm)

Happy Honkers

Posted: March 8, 2011 in Blowin' Steam

You know those people who constantly honk their car horn like it’s a toy? They honk to say hi, to annoy their kids when they pick them up from school, to get attention, etc.

Do they know how many accidents are caused because of someone like this honking their horn? It’s extremely dangerous. I don’t know about you, but if someone behind me honks their horn I’m either going to stomp on the brake or push on the gas. This is especially dangerous with new drivers because they are still unfamiliar with the ways of the road. It’s not just dangerous for teenagers, but the elderly as well because their reaction period is slower.

People need to realize that not everyone drives like them and they need to be patient. Maybe they should just make more time from point A to point B instead of taking their anger out on their car horn.

It’s happened to all of us: sitting at a red light, changing the radio station or just looking off in the distance and the light turns green. The person behind you seems to waste no time at honking at you to move and the light only changed .5 seconds before. Congratulations, your in a hurry, deal with it. Some people would like to be safe and not get into an accident with the person who just ran a red light. Or maybe you were the one who ran a red light because someone behind you honked. Or you hit someone on the cross walk because they were stupid enough to not wait for the “walk” sign and the car behind you got antsy.

Next time your in a hurry, don’t resort to your car horn, it can cause more damage than benefit in the long run. Who knows, maybe the guy you honked at jumps out of his car and decides to tell you what to do with that horn.

~Lighthouse.

Gotta Give and Take

Posted: January 29, 2011 in Blowin' Steam

This is a dose of dumb-proof relationship advice.


 

When your in a relationship and you actually want it to last, you have to give some to get some. Yeah, sometimes you give and give and give to avail. But eventually your significant other will see through the fog and realize how fantastic you are.

There is a couple in one of my classes who have been together for about a year. At the beginning of the school year they were happy-go-lucky. Now? Not so much. They are both involved in sports at my school, and he bent over backwards to be at all of her games in the fall. But when he wanted to stay at his house a night before a big tournament, she flips out saying how he was being unreasonable. She wasn’t willing to sacrifice her comfort at her house to be at his, even though he would stay at her’s. Their relationship is very strained right now, but I wish them the best because I haven’t seen her this happy in a while.

On the other side of me, in the same class, there is another couple and they have it figured out. Cheerleader and Football player. She isn’t the slutty type, and he isn’t the jerk type. He is always supporting her at tournaments and she’s at every single game, whether she has to be or not. She recently went to Nationals and he went right along with her, even though that meant he had to spend hours calling people to cover his shifts at work.

Maybe for you it is as simple as finally spending time with her parents, even though you disagree with everything they stand for. If would mean more than you think to her.

The give-and-take method is never guaranteed to work, and you may end up giving entirely more than you get. Just make sure you are not being taken advantage of. Word it like this: “If I do _______ with you, will you do _____ with me?” There may be some huffing and puffing, but if you really care about each other, it will work out.

Good luck!!

-Lighthouse

It was a scorching summers day out on the lake. Our boat had just set sail and we were having fun being out on the water. After about an hour or so, we were all hot, hungry, and dehydrated, so we decided to make our way back to shore. Since there was no wind to be found for the sail, we were using a small motor, but as we decided it was time to get to land, with almost perect comic timing, the engine stopped. Out of gas.

Franticly we searched around for the extra fuel tank, as the captain just sat in his seat as calm as the wind. When we came around to finding the extra tank, it was, to our dismay, completly empty. Being first time sailors, we were running around like chickens with their heads cut off, trying to comprehend why there was no gas, and why the captain was so calm about it.

“How are we possibly going to get back?” we asked him, “Theres no gas, no wind, we have no paddles, and we’re a mile from shore!”. The captain stood up and looked at us with a smile. He explained, “The wind always has a tricky mind of its own. It comes and goes whenever it feels like. Its just like life, it has its ups and downs,” Then he looked up at the sail, “But we always have to remember: No matter how bad life may get, the wind will always come back to fill our sails.”

At the very second that he said that line, as if he were a messenger from god himself, the wind came back. It was stronger than ever and we were able to make it to shore in no time. I will never forget that day. It has shown me alot more about life and what is to come.

-Jay-T Out

Hump as in the middle of the week. Get your mind out of the gutter.
*Facepalm*

Yes, exclaiming this throughout the hallways and streets of the university may get you a few less than desirable looks, but dont be afraid!
You never need a reason to celebrate life. Everyone can use a bit of random happiness stuck in life’s collage of stress and frustration.

There was an old radio station that I used to listen to back at home. It became a part of my routine everyday to finish with class and be as frustrated as possible and then hop in my car and turn on the radio. Everyday as soon as the radio program started, my favorite DJ would exclaim as loud as humanly possible, “HAPPY MONDAY!!”, or “HAPPY FRIDAY!!”, or “HAPPY HUMPDAY!!”. No matter what kind of mood I was in, he was always able to bring a smile to my face.

Now that I’m at college and hundreds of miles away from home, and my radio station, I make it a point to yell “Happy Humpday!”, or any day of the week, to at least one person each day. Try picking up this habit and see how many smiles you can bring to frustrated faces each day. You might have some laughs or even make new friends.

So HAPPY HUMPDAY from Doublefacepalms, go out and spread the joy!

-Jay-T Out

Aaron Lewis – Country Boy Official video
From youtube.com 11-22-2011

Aaron Lewis did a great job at this song here, but I feel that there are some points that need to be clarified with the general public concerning their status as a ‘country boy’.

Having the ability to relate to some of the lyrics in this song does not make you from the country. Many people can relate with many songs. Being from the country does not make you a country boy. Its a lifestyle and identity that is quickly being flooded by the fashion industry of the US.

Just because you know where an old dirt road may cross the general vicinity of your living area, does not mean you were born in the country.

Just because you own a truck, some camo pants, and have touched a tractor, does not give you any special right to call yourself a country boy. No, having great-grand parents that have a tractor does not mean that you own one. Even if you leave the comfort of your moms tit to go ride it once in a blue moon.

The most disturbing part about this video’s reactions that I often see are the praising and agreements with the stanza near the beginning.

“I rarely drink from the bottle,
but I’ll smoke a little weed.”

Smoking weed definitely does-not under any god-given circumstance make you, the wimpy dark clothed outcast pot-head, a country boy.
Smoking weed does in-fact, but is not limited to, reinforcing any previous acquired statuses as total dipstick, retarted monkey, and imbecilic turd licker. It also shows that instead of knowing the fruits and traps of nature, like a country boy would, you have been corrupted and tricked by society to fall into the butt-crack of stupidity.

Stop claiming that because you like this song you are a country person.

-Jay-T Out

Cut from facepunch.com:

Caution: Wall of text. There’s no tl;dr for this one.

Do you want to be happy? That may sound like a silly question to you, but before you can work to achieve happiness, you must be sure if you really desire it. There are alternatives to being a happy person. If you’ve given up on the world, on the human race, or on hope, you probably don’t want happiness. Instead, you may want to live a step back from the colorful side of life, viewing it with your cynicism in an area full of grey. Personally I don’t empathize with it, but some people choose that lifestyle to be better artists, because that’s how they’ve been
raised, or because they have low self-esteem. Either way, I hope to provide some insight with you on how to
reach happiness. I’m going to break what makes you happy down into three simple categories.

If you have decided that you’d like to be a happier person, first you must examine your life right now. I recommend that you create a list, mental or physical, of the most meaningful parts of your life. It can be something small, like Cheerios, or something bigger, like a relationship with a person. There is no limit. Try to make each thing simplified, though. If you’re going to list, “Playing soccer with Joe,” list them separately as, “Playing soccer” and, “Joe.” Then make a list of the things that bring you the greatest sadness, boredom, or anger that have a say in your life. Again, it could be small, like having to clean after a long day, or it could be big, like how you feel about your
self-image. Got those in front of you, or clearly defined in your mind? Good, that’s the first step. Take your time. There’s no need to rush this. It takes a while for me to think of all of the things that make me happy.

Now look at the things that make you happy. Ask yourself, why do they make me happy? Try to spend a bit of thought on it, maybe seeing if there’s more than what’s on the surface of your reason that comes to mind. By the way, and this doesn’t have to do with my main point but it’s fun to ponder, how many of your reasons make you happy because they benefit you in some way, not someone else? Once you’ve done this, you’ll be able to see more clearly, is it more the people in your life that make you happy, doing activities that make you happy, or having things that make you happy? What did you list the most? People, activities, or things? Or, did you make a list that’s balanced between two or even all of these categories? What do you value? Now you’re looking at happiness in a different way. The isolated parts of your list are coming together. Your perspective is broadening.

If it’s the people that make you the most happy, you value your connection to society. Having relationships with more than a few people makes you feel involved in a community/communities. Relationships give you a sense of belonging and significance in the world, which is, to some degree, comforting to you. You like security, knowing you have a support group; you have people to fall back on. You may enjoy being there for others, like being the one people go to for advice. If it’s the activities that make you the most happy, you think of movement as the necessary flow of life more than others. You might feel your club activity or volunteering makes your life more purposeful or gives you a more complex character or fulfillment. You might be afraid of letting life go by while you’re wasting your time, slowing down and being immobile. During breaks, you might enjoy the beginning, but after a while, you’ll feel restless. If it’s the things that make you the most happy, you may have an unstable home environment or a degree of inconsistency in one or more aspects of your life. You can always see your things, touch your things, and they will look and feel the same. They won’t go anywhere you don’t put them, they won’t grow, they won’t change, and they won’t ever leave you. They are your shield as well as your constant. You may also be a person who likes to be in control. The people in your life cannot be controlled. Activities can only be controlled to a certain extent if you are the person or one of the people arranging them. Objects are manipulated by your will, and if the things are entirely yours, solely your will.

If you relate to one area strongly, that’s okay. If you relate to all three just about equally, that’s also okay. There’s no answer that says you’re a balanced person, or that you need to increase a part of your life. This is just to reflect a bit deeper on who you are.

To improve your happiness with people:

Try to fix any bridges you may have burned or that others have burned. Sure, you might love to hate someone, or you just can’t think of the thought of seeing their face(s) again. First off, if you love to hate someone, that might be fun, but it’s not nearly as fun (or as healthy, in my experience), as indifference towards them. You don’t need to see their face for this process or even talk to them. This depends on how you want this relationship to change. It needs to change in some way, but the choice is yours. You can completely eliminate it, or you may try to repair it. Either way is better than leaving loose ends, hurt feelings… and staring at ashes of where a bridge used to be. You know what I mean.

If you want to repair the relationship, you’ll need to talk to the person. It can start with a letter or a phone call (but try to avoid texting- not enough characters or you’re not saying enough). If there was an incident that was your fault, apologize. Even if you don’t feel entirely sorry, swallow your pride temporarily and get it over with. You once liked this person for a reason, right? If it was there fault, you obviously somewhat want to forgive them. You need to fully accept future contact with this person after they’ve hurt you/someone/something that matters to you. Send them a note that you forgive them. It doesn’t have to be mushy and gushy. It can be formal. Just reach out and get it over with- I’m sorry, or I forgive you. If he/she chooses not to respond to you, then you can just let the relationship go, knowing you tried. There will be no “what if” lingering in your mind later on. If the relationship continues, hold no hostility, bitterness, or resentment toward the person. It’ll make your efforts go to waste. You’re working on a clean slate, here. Leave the past in the past. For this to work, you have to ask yourself- is it really worth it?

If you want to let go of angry feelings toward someone and terminate the remains of a relationship, you need to decide whether or not you want to contact them. If you want to contact them, I recommend not doing this face to face or over the phone. If you see them face to face, hand them a letter and then walk away. Write them an
e-mail. What you should say should not be mean. As easy as it could be to insult them, to get back at them for whatever they’ve done to you, don’t. Take the high road and be the better person. It’s not as fun, but it shows you have a higher character than they do. You have integrity. It can go something like, “I’m sorry that what happened between us went the way it did. I would prefer if we didn’t associate with each other for the time being. I feel it would be easier on both of us. Please do not contact me in the future.” If you don’t say anything hurtful, it can’t be used against you, and it won’t be awkward anymore.

If you don’t want to communicate with them, then you need to let go of them in your mind. Picture the person as vividly and as detailed as you can, standing before you, head to toe. Now, picture one of three things.
1. Picture them turn around and walk away from you until you can’t see them anymore.
2. Picture an eraser. Erase them, bit by bit, until all you’re staring at is blank space.
3. Picture them shrinking, getting smaller and smaller, until they vanish.

You only need to do this once, but take your time and do it well. Then, begin to let go of your emotions towards them. Quit thinking about how they’re mean, how they hurt you. The way to do this is to realize that they’re just not worth it. You’ve got better things to do with your time. You have better things to think about. They’re going to live on without you. They already have suffered a loss. 🙂 No, seriously! Valuing yourself doesn’t make you egotistical or cocky. Anyone who thinks that are just caught up in the hype of a lack of self-esteem being a cool fad.

So enough on those broken bridges, now that they’re under reconstruction. Let’s focus on the positive bonds you’ve already formed. Your friends, your family, even acquaintances- relationships from all three of these groups are important to your happiness, so why not strengthen them even farther? I find that even if you’re already close to someone you’ve known for years, you can still somehow find an unmade connection, connect it, and be even more close. With your friends, say something a bit farther out there than you normally would. Do you love your friends? How often do you say it? Just say it, “I love you,” or something like that showing how much you care. Be sincere and keep a straight face. They might respond by making a joke out of it or acting like it was weird of you to say, but don’t be discouraged. That doesn’t mean you failed; that means they didn’t know how to handle upfront affection. They’re still going to remember that fondly.

Why not get a bit closer to those acquaintances? Invite them to something a group of your friends are doing, or make an effort to have a longer conversation with them. Be careful that you haven’t judged them entirely on their first impression; they may make a lovely friend, even if they didn’t reach out to you when you met them. Maybe they need that extra push. Not that you should be pushy, but that sometimes people who are shy or aren’t as confident can’t initiate a solid friendship as well. Not only will you create a potentially stronger relationship by reaching out, but you’ll have gained experience socializing in a way you might not be the most comfortable with, which can be looked at as prep for the work environment.

As much as we all love and are addicted to our mp3s, cell phones, laptops, and all of those other attention-sucking devices, they can be a burden on parents, siblings, cousins or other family members who want to spend more time with you. I’m not saying you should cut back to so many hours per week or something like that, because I couldn’t do that, but if your family member is acting particularly lonely or bored, you should consider pausing what you’re doing for a while and playing with them. Yes, playing. Get out a board game; you’re never too old for Scrabble. Sure, you can bond by working together on chores that need to get done, but once and a while you need to enjoy relaxing and non-dishwasher soap related excitement, too.

Exercises you should try:

1. Say, “I love you,” a lot more to people you care about and love, whether that love is romantic or platonic.
2. Complement the people in your life. Strive to complement three times a day.
3. Learn some new jokes (clean jokes, in case you’re in a professional setting) that you feel comfortable telling. They’re great as ice-breakers, and a laugh is best shared among friends anyways.
4. friends you’ve known longer, bring up old memories and try reliving them again. This is usually very funny if you choose the right scenario.
5. Plan for the future. Plan activities that will come years down the line, like a road trip to a favorite travel destination, or going to the Olympics. Even if it won’t happen, you’ll have that tie with them that’ll make you closer. My old best friend for years, Jane, and I planned a road trip across the country and made little jars to save money in for years. It won’t happen, but we both remember that time with love.
6. Smile at your friends more often. Be careful that you don’t only come to them to complain about your day or seek advice.
7. Try to say hi to a new person at least once a month. Even if you’re in a coffee shop and you see someone sitting alone, be friendly. You might make even more friends that way.

To improve your happiness with activities:
Your strength is probably when you’re in a public group setting, and your weakness is probably when you’re sick with a cold alone at home with nothing but a TV to keep you company. You probably try to get up and get paperwork done with snot coming out of your nose, right? I’m going to provide some insight into embracing your strongest talents as well as your weakest ones, and what to do when you just can’t or shouldn’t do anything.

What’s that thing or two you’re really good at doing? Drawing? Helping animals? Paintballing? Whatever it is, you’re not doing enough of it. That’s the mentality you should have. Even if it’s your job, even if it’s your business, your career, you haven’t done enough yet. When asked what they consider their best painting to be, many artists say, “The next one.” You should always be striving to do more. The moment you get comfortable is the moment that someone’s going to start doing whatever it is better than you and take your place. This will make you the best that you can be. You must be motivated, and never get comfortable with your level of skill. Strive to be more.

Was there ever something in your life that someone had you try to do or that you set out to try to do and failed miserably at it? Yep, it’s a burned bridge again, except it’s not with a person, it’s with a moment in your past. Did your horrible first grade art teacher give you an F on a drawing project, turning you off from the thought of drawing completely? Did someone close to you completely shoot down an idea for a club you were going to start? Face your fears and go back to it. I can guarantee you’ll do better on it now. For one thing, time makes all of us better. You’ve gained experience down the road. For another, it won’t be your first time trying it. Go back into it seriously, even if it was something that now seems ridiculously simple. Don’t let your fear overtake you. You are going to feel so amazing when you get that well deserved sense of accomplishment. Even if you still don’t do it completely how you would have wanted, try to let go of the perfectionist tendencies for a moment and realize that you did better. Also, this is not something for your friends to criticize. Don’t show it to them, or explain, if it’s something that includes other people, that you’re not looking for feedback. The world doesn’t need to judge you 100% of the time.

You also have those talents that are sorta developed, but they’re not really going anywhere and you haven’t given them enough time to progress. This may be because you don’t know enough about them to really see if you like them or not. Our, they’re something a bit more difficult. Even if it’s not as fun as the thing you’re amazing at doing, you should set a block of time out at least once a week to work on these activities. Then you’ll at least be able to fairly judge on whether it’s something you’d like to continue, you’ll have more experience and will be able to have conversations on the subject. Don’t knock it until you try it though, right?

There’s going to be some days when you look out the window and it’s just pouring outside, or you’re down with the cold or flu, and you really just need to stay indoors and probably rest. These days, if I let them, I admit, make me feel like I have cabin fever. I’m going to share what personally helps me. If you need to stay in bed and you feel like you’re missing everything and the weight of the world is piling on top of you, make a list of all the things you need to get done. Then write down the dates of when you’d like to get those things done. Then reevaluate it. Some of those things can wait, can’t they? How about getting some help from friends or family to get some of those items tackled? Release the stress and look to others. You are not responsible for everything, and you don’t need to be. Focus on getting well. Would you rather your sickness or reason to stay in bed be prolonged, keeping you from your things longer?

If you’re simply trapped in your house for whatever reason and you want to get stuff done, first eat. That may sound silly, but when I’m very busy I actually forget. Get a good meal in you first. Then, again, make a list of all the things that need to get done. This will keep you from trying to do it all at once, which will be counterproductive. Rearrange your list to go from most urgent to least urgent. There you go- now you have an order to tackle things in. Blast some good music, turn on lots of lights or open the windows if it’s bright out, and get it done. Don’t forget to take breaks and do things you enjoy! Having fun can be an urgent matter, too.

Exercises you should try:
1. Use a planner. I can’t stand them, but I use them anyways because they’re helpful. If you don’t want to use a planner, use a calendar you can hang on your fridge.
2. Try something like meditation. Even if you don’t want to completely meditate (it’s hard to have the patience for it), take some time every so often to do nothing (nothing doesn’t mean browse the web) and unwind your brain. You don’t have to think every moment of the day.
3. Pack more protein snacks and carry a refillable water bottle. Busy people sometimes have trouble with their diets because they’re rushing around, subject to vending machines. If you bring protein snacks, not only do you not have to spend money out, but you’ll have more energy. The water bottle will be better for the environment and you might drink less soda, which is never a bad thing.
4. Ever forget to look at those reminders you write for yourself, which makes the whole operation pointless? Keep the post-it notes on your bathroom mirror. You won’t forget to look at them that way.
5. Try to spend more time outside. Even casual sunlight exposure can make a person feel better.

To improve your happiness with material things:
Your “best friend” might be your mobile phone, your iPod, your laptop. (That’s not an insult- sometimes I say it msyelf!) You get very real happiness from interacting with a game, rather than with a person; you might prefer shopping at the mall alone rather than with friends because you don’t care about the social experience. There’s nothing wrong with that, but you might find that your wallet cries in pain from being so skinny every once and a while. Have a super high paying job, so it’s not really an issue for you? Great! But even so, there’s still ways you can manage your money to make it stretch longer. This section will be a bit shorter, but you can feel free to contribute what you’d like.

You may have the compulsion to buy that new iDevice as soon as it comes out. It’s shiny, it’s thinner, it has more features, it comes in a new color! I don’t blame you. Still, if you want just a little while, you’re going to get it cheaper- we all know this. Yet so many people still buy the new thing the day it comes out. Why? Is it because of impatience, wanting to keep up with the latest and greatest? Before you get something right away when it’s released, ask yourself the origin of your desire for the product right now. Ask yourself, what’s going to happen if I wait a week? Two weeks? Two months? If you recognize what you’re doing and reflect on it, you might see that the world won’t end if you buy it a little later on- and your wallet will thank you!

But let’s say you do want that new iDevice right now, even after thinking it over. You can’t afford that all at once, right? Now I’m not going to get into credit and debit and yah de yah, because you already know that already. Go with me here. If you like to have nice new things, you need to learn how to save your money. Create a budget and see how much you can put away per paycheck, per month, whatever you choose, comfortably. If you put away a little along and along and resist spending it on impulse items, not only will you learn to live more efficiently, but you’ll be able to get that new iDevice or Android or whatever. (Not trying to be partial to Macs here, promise.)

Exercises you should try:
1. Cut coupons. Yes, you might be made fun of for acting like a 60 year old woman, but they can go a long way. However, be careful you only use coupons on things you already buy, not buy new things because you have coupons- that will be counterproductive.
2. Recycle cans. I don’t do this because I don’t buy as many canned drinks and such, but my boyfriend goes through them fast and gets cash from them once a month. Not only will you get more money but you’ll help the environment, which is something to feel good about. 🙂
3. If you need to, get on food stamps if you’re not already. My family went for years without signing up for them when we could have been getting free food each month, and that was not smart at all. Don’t be afraid to ask for help.
4. If you have an artsy side, craft. You can start by giving your first handmade creations to your beau or mom, or anyone in your life who you know will appreciate anything you give them. Then as you progress in your skills, you can develop personal tastes in what you like to make and make things that are worthy to give to friends and coworkers. Even though you have to buy the materials, most likely you’re going to spend less money than if you bought things for others. Not to mention you can find materials to use for free. I made a very detailed dreamcatcher for my boyfriend for his birthday from feathers I collected for months. They’re so much more meaningful that way.

I’m not done yet. As much as this helps, you have to work on eliminating negativity in your life for your journey to happiness to come full circle. You won’t be able to eliminate contact with certain horrible people in your life and you won’t have to stop paying bills, but you can still cut back on your sadness and worry. It can even start with how you act here on Facepunch. If there’s a user you’re having a quarrel with, back away. Do you like to argue? Do an experiment and avoid it for a few days. See what happens. Chances are you might find that you don’t miss it. Do you have a self-destructive friend? Remove your ties to them if they’re just dragging you down. You’re not obliged to save the world- if you try, it’ll just take you down with it.

Another thing that has helped me is to open my mind to change and develop a more global viewpoint. Embrace customs and people of other cultures. Put in more effort to learn about them. Your world is bigger than your home, your town, your country. Reflect on your morals, your principles. Were they taught to you? Which ones do you really believe? These are the things you live your life by, so examine them, and see if you want to perhaps change them. Open your mind and your heart to principles from other cultures and take what you can from them.

This guide isn’t meant to prove that I’m right and I’m not saying I know everything about the world or that this guide will help everyone. You might feel that this doesn’t completely apply to you, but I encourage you to take what you can from it. I put my heart into writing this, so I hope I can spread a bit of happiness in return. Also, this thread is meant to start a discussion. Talk about the things that make you happy, your happiest experiences, or what you think of what I’ve posted. How important is happiness to you? Love, breathe, enjoy the sunshine. Have a happy day. 🙂

-Facepunch