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101 Things to Do to Live a Happier Life

Updated: May 30, 2021


A quote allegedly attributed to the Irish playright Oscar Wilde says " Some people cause happiness whereever they go, some whenever they go". I think it is important to be the kind of person that lights up a room when they enter it. Here are 101 original observations that I have found to be helpful in that pursuit.




1. Let a car merge in front of you during construction season- Enjoy the wave they give you.

2. Park in the farther parking spot, someone needs that closer spot more.

3. Take the smaller piece of pizza, cake or pie.

4. Relearn the art of the handwritten card.

5. If a server or checkout person has a name tag, address them by their name.

6. Never go to a house party empty handed- bring the wine.

7. You can never fail with a well-done charcuterie board.

8. Say “I love you” when you leave your loved ones. Every time

9. Always make enough food for a surprise guest or two.

10. If a song reminds you of someone, send them the song.

11. Always have a vacation music playlist ready.

12. Use the good glassware/plates- don’t store them.

13. Be more concerned with giving your children memories than things.

14. The “just because” gift is highly underrated.

15. Let the inside and outside of your car be a reflection of your professionalism.

16. Fresh flowers always dress up a table or deck.

17. Let your books and the notes/highlights be a legacy for future readers.

18. Know a little bit about your ancestry.

19. Never be stuck without a next book to read/listen to.

20. See movies that invoke emotion, that move you.

21. Don’t forget those old movies.

22. Always thank a veteran for their service

23. Put lights on the deck and use them-your time there doesn’t have to end at dusk.

24. Invest in good shoes.

25. Have a strong “sock game”.

26. Money spent on quality pillows and sheets is money well spent.

27. Be more willing to lose $168 on a bad decision than 168 hours.

28. If you are unsure of your faith, explore it.

29. If you are a believer, be more concerned with living like your Savior than your pastor.

30. Keeping up with the Jones doesn’t help you or the Jones.

31. Don’t wait too long to be concerned with your health-the earlier, the easier.

32. Drink at least 100oz of water per day.

33. Get a favorite coffee and/or tea.

34. Even if you aren’t a “cocktail person”, have a go-to cocktail.

35. Journal until it becomes a habit.

36. Be a loving, supportive sibling-life is too short for petty squabbles.

37. Be extravagant in praise.

38. Live in a “glass house” when it comes to casting the first stone.

39. Have an emergency fund for those times when something inevitably breaks.

40. Know your favorite scent and have it around your house.

41. Become a “kid” at zoos, museums and parks.

42. Have a well-stocked bar for guests-not just what you like.

43. Invest in younger men or younger women-your experience has merit.

44. Find a place in nature to escape to frequently.

45. Light the candles-they aren’t just for decoration.

46. Be the first one up and get the donuts.

47. Get comfortable with your singing voice and SING.

48. Find a favorite author or authors. Be inspired by their writing,

49. Live as today was your last day. Set goals until you are a hundred.

50. Develop a friendship that is the “2am friend”.

51. Step out of your comfort zone often.

52. Be a friend who speaks the truth in love.

53. Tip well- even if the food isn’t everything you dreamed it would be.

54. Learn enough about yourself to know how you de-stress.

55. Leave the curse words in the dictionary.

56. Help fix a flat-even in the rain.

57. Let your kids know you will always be their DD, no questions asked.

58. Don’t let your words go unsaid- verbally or in your writing.

59. Choose people over your phone.

60. Wear the Christmas sweater/suit.

61. Make the holidays a big deal but remember the real reason for the holiday.

62. Work harder on yourself than you do on your job.

63. Learn to say no to good things to say yes to great things.

64. Don’t be so in love with your “stuff” that you can’t lend it out.

65. Enjoy live music as often as you are able.

66. Always buy the lemonade/candy bars etc from a kid‘s homemade stand-pay a little more.

67. If two tip amounts enter your mind, always tip the higher amount.

68. Be an unabashed fan of your favorite teams.

69. Always put the art on the refrigerator

70. Make your home a place to relax, unwind-regardless of how simple it is.

71. Be known as the reliable friend, employee, group member.

72. A great mattress will pay for itself in quality sleep hours.

73. Be able to keep a plant alive.

74. If you have a great recipe-share both the recipe and the finished product

75. Be vivacious in your love of life.

76. Set goals, write them down and then follow-up.

77. Admit mistakes quickly and work to resolve them quickly.

78. Be lavish in appreciation.

79. Always carry an umbrella and hold one for someone whenever you can.

80. You do not have to overspend to look neat and put together.

81. It is a great quality to strive for more only if you are also grateful for what you have.

82. Two ears, one mouth- try to live with that ratio.

83. Get comfortable with the “extra mile” philosophy.

84. Bring out the best wine for guests.

85. If you play an instrument, share that gift with others.

86. When you send birthday or anniversary wishes on social media, go beyond the basic

87. Always have a winter “survival kit” in your car, your partner’s car and your kid’s car

88. Carry a $100 bill with you for the feeling it gives you to just have it.

89. Get to know your hometown- be willing to show people around.

90. Do something to raise your heart rate at least five times a week.

91. Don’t settle for a mediocre relationship with your partner or kids.

92. Make a person feel amazing on their birthday.

93. It is more important to make the other person feel as they are the most important person in the room rather than making them think you are.

94. “Age is just a number” is more than a saying; it is a lifestyle.

95. Do not skimp on the presentation when giving a gift.

96. Things that should smell good- you, your car and your home.

97. Being sentimental does NOT equal being sappy.

98. Never underestimate the joy of a board game or card game.

99. See as much of the world as you can comfortably afford.

100. Do not let debt be your master.

101. The person you receive the most feedback from is yourself. Make sure your positive soundtracks outnumber your negative ones.

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