Happiness is Not Reading Happiness Quotes

I went looking for happiness quotes and found them all irritating, in the same way that I find self-help books with titles like “Ten Stupid Things You. Do. To. Mess Up Your. Life” annoying as hell.  (Also extra periods in my sentences, but that’s another post.)  The last thing I need is some probably. dead person telling me that any state of being I am currently experiencing that is not happiness is all my fault.  The dumbest one was “If you aren’t grateful for what you already have, what makes you think you would be happy with more?”  Well, if I’m short on something, having more would make me happier, right?  I mean, come on.

My gift for you this Sunday is no damn happiness quotes.

What made you unquotably happy this week?

77 thoughts on “Happiness is Not Reading Happiness Quotes

  1. My partner and I had lunch today at a Buddhist temple’s cafe. It was lovely: good food, good company and a beautiful peaceful setting full of artworks.

    On your theme of happiness quotes … We wandered round the temple’s shop first and one of the things for sale was a book of daily reflections. Today’s was about depression and how it comes from over attachment. They had a list of 6 steps to fix your depression. Step 1 was to cultivate your positive disposition. I.e. make yourself feel happier. I was so disgusted I didn’t read the rest.

    I guess I shouldn’t be surprised about Buddhism having dreadful trite daily reflection books. God knows I’ve read enough dreadful Christian ones over the years. But I’d expected better.

  2. Oh, another thing that did make me happy was all the news and stories this weekend about the moon. Great to be hearing so much about the ingenuity and sheer excitement of the Apollo mission and the number of people involved in getting it to happen.

  3. Slept Saturday, not productive, but it was a long week and so went from burnt out to functioning.

  4. Yesterday’s rest did me some good. Thanks for all of the tips about anger.

    Quotes about happiness tend to be the “Cliff notes” version of the actual discourse. It takes time and reflection on deep reading (or learning) with real thought being put into making changes.

    About making a change, see – https://youtu.be/Lp7E973zozc I found this video recently but only watched it yesterday. I am somewhat wary of messages from people like Mel Robbins and Simon Sinek but I thought this TedXTalk to be quite useful. MMV especially for Spoonies. Sometimes you just can’t force y’self to do sh*t. And that’s ok.

  5. Not a happy week in our household….we were given a completion date by purchasers’ advocates (Isle of Man speak for conveyancer) of July 18 and budgeted for that – then everything went insanely quiet and then we were bombarded by last minute piddling nonsense by the same people who were hustling us to complete, of course we did not complete and now we have totally no money. Richest person in the house is 16 year old who has been paid £50 for cat-feeding and dog walking.

    It’s not the money bit that kills me – it’s the fact that we are not in control and dependent on a bunch of nit-picking numpties to finish what should have been done weeks ago. Sigh.

    And am still working on a very turgid review document for school instead of reading good books and chilling. Argh.

    1. Wow, that sounds…messy. Sending you strength-hugs and hope things will get solved in the best way possible very soon.

    1. That’s got to be my #1 Granny Weatherwax quote. My personal twist is, when asked by a salesperson how I am today, to reply “Well, I didn’t die again today.”

      I’m surprised by the number of people who interpret this as my having died before. No-no-no, I’m just maintaining my long string of not expiring. Although I suspect I am past my best-by date.

  6. My generator has been chugging away since Friday night. Since there are thousands of people without power, and the power company is not even giving out estimates any more, I am DEEPLY thankful and happy the that DH talked me into spending the money for this thing a couple years ago. We have a well, so no power means no plumbing….SO HAPPY!

    My co-worker’s mother is famous for texting without proofreading. Last week she ended a text with “Tell everyone I said ‘help!'” With the way the world has been lately, I found this satisfying on some strange level. Sometimes that IS what one wants to say.

    Have a bunch of time off coming up. Not so excited about not being paid for more than a week, but happy about the projects I am planning to do in this time.

    1. I too am happy for my generator. We also bought it a few years ago, during the ice storm that knock out SO much power. I am also happy I’m on city water and have a gas water heater, so, I have plumbing with warm water for showers.

      I have some hope and potential for sadness. A Consumers Energy truck was outside & I talked to the dude. He said a switch is out and it is a 5 minute fix. The sad is because he can’t do it. He was trying to get someone to come and fix it. So, instead of getting my power back on Tuesday around 11:30 pm, I might get it back today!

      May yours come back on soon Jennifer!

        1. Watching “Person of Interest” My hubby is gone all week (😢), but I can binge watch (😁). Cross stitching, and almost done with a fun project! Today has been fun!

        2. We have a Champion brand generator. We use it for camping, because I’m spoiled and like having power. It works beautifully for our needs and runs on gasoline.

  7. Happy to be home , in my own bed at night, it gets dark outside therefore I can sleep instead of 24 hrs daylight. Husband is recovery well from knee surgery, third one in a year
    , sheesh, it took two orthopaedic surgeons to get this right.

    Saw my darling granddaughters.

  8. Hum… Useless happiness quotes… I.M.H.O. these are as pointless as health tips on line. “If you get more sleep you will have great skin, a gorgeous body, lots of money and sex, and your life would be perfect.” (I swear I read this just before this blog on an exercise site). If a happy, healthy life was that simple, what will us writers ever write about?
    (Sleep starved protagonist takes vengeance on those in slumber… Whahaha)

  9. Happy my DH and DS are coming home and happy to have one more day of alone time first.

  10. Had a lovely time rejoining the gardening club I used to belong to. Knew half a dozen people, and was made very welcome.

    It looks like I might manage a holiday after all, revolving round a week cat-sitting for a friend in Surrey. I’m keen to visit lots of gardens, including RHS Wisley, which is nearby, to finalize my choices for wall plants and fruit. It would be at the end of August/beginning of September, which would be ideal for garden visits.

    Working out the logistics for this has also made me realize I should postpone the shed conversion (to summerhouse/growing space + storage) until next year. Feeling very relieved.

    1. Hubby and I recently saw an episode of Escape to the Country in Surrey. Very pretty. Can see why you’d like to go, Jane:)

      We have been watching a bunch of the shows from all over the UK and see lots of breathtaking gardens. So lovely and the house hunters are always so keen to find places for long walks, which is fab but we always wonder if the folks have to worry about bears and ticks and such like we do here because nobody ever mentions any, lol. Really the show makes all the UK seems ideal, the theme music is kinda Downton Abbey, and the bits of history thrown in are fun so pretty much every area comes off well.

      1. Well, not quite paradise – but there are loads of public footpaths (and loads more which need adding to the official maps), and no bears or wolves. There’s only one venomous snake, the adder, and it’s not common – I’ve never seen one. We do now have ticks carrying Lyme disease, unfortunately, though I don’t think it’s as widespread as in the States.

        I found going for walks in the States and Australia rather nerve-wracking: I felt I didn’t have the necessary common sense to deal with anything dangerous if I encountered it – which luckily I didn’t. I was even nervous about gardening in Australia, what with the fatal spiders and snakes; plus the leeches. Just a British wimp.

        1. Lol. I’d be right there with you on the wimp re snakes/spiders thing:)

          And thanks for info re bears etc. Makes sense now why so many folks say they can walk in the forest for hours there. That and your super rail service seem to make country living even more appealing.

  11. Platitude
    Description: A platitude is a trite, meaningless, or prosaic statement, often used as a thought-terminating cliché, aimed at quelling social, emotional, or cognitive unease. Platitudes have been criticized as giving a false impression of wisdom, making it easy to accept falsehoods: A platitude is even worse than a cliché. Wikipedia

    I have this sudden urge to sing Jimmy Buffet songs about changes in latitude, changes in attitude.

    I am happy this week. I’ve been to my PCP three times (since June 17), had my meds adjusted, threw out the self-prescribed supplements (potassium too high!), started my Social Security, paid off all my credit cards except for the newest (Best Buy) which I will when they send me the first bill, and it is take the dotter to dinner and shopping Sunday, my favorite therapy.

    Also, it’s the annual Grampa buys all the back-to-school supplies Sunday! It just adds to the shopping bliss.

    What. could. possibly. go. wrong?

    1. Do the grandkids have a shelf by the door where they can drop their stuff off, put their homework, have their backpacks at bedtime ready to be grabbed in the morning? Makes it much easier for parents to check for messages sent home requiring signatures or money, etc. Might be a really practical back-to-school item, whether built-in or simple bookcase.

      1. The dotter has some such arrangement. We might have gotten more on Sunday, except she begged off from replenishing school supplies until she inventories last year’s unused stock and compares it to this year’s “requirements.”

        Instead, it became take the twins to Target and outfit them with BTS apparel Monday, with a stop at Chipotle for keto-friendly dinner stuff. The twins made their own pizza at home.

        My beloved child spent hours and hours setting up my new cell phone, not finishing until hours after her bed time. I have a new cell phone. Old dog, new trick.

        1. And now it is take the tenth grader to Target and Walmart and outfit him with BTS apparel Tuesday… without mom. I left the dotter home with the twins and took her eldest shopping for shirts and shorts and shoes. Also long pants and a hoody, but those don’t alliterate.

          That just leaves the seventh grader, who is going through an antisocial stage and didn’t want.

  12. Happiness today is working AC units in the house. I don’t even know what temperature it is but I can tell it’s darn uncomfortable outside with no one walking or God forbid running. Those that can have taken to their boats to try and cool off. The talk about bears brings up stories of bears getting into swimming pools on the news which a few years ago were unheard of locally.

  13. Love this! There are so many sappy “don’t worry; be happy” quotations around.
    Here is my best thought on happiness and it has worked pretty well for me for quite a while. Hmmm. I am wondering if it will sound sappy and stupid too. Well, I leave that for you to judge.

    I call it “thing and not thing”. It is akin to the philosophy of the Stoics. (Not “stoic” in the sense of dogged persistence, but in the sense of the book title, A Guide to the Good Life; the Ancient Art of Stoic Joy – great book BTW.)

    Here are two examples:
    When it is summer I really work at enjoying the heat the best I can and remembering to enjoy not being cold. Also flowers and going barefoot. In the winter I do my best to remember to enjoy not being too hot, but enjoying the chill. Also warm socks and fires and beautiful snow.

    Example 2: When I am with my family I work at enjoying my time with them – we will not always be here – and I do enjoy it. When I am on my own I enjoy the solitude and quiet to focus on what I want to do.

    Thing and not thing. If we can enjoy both the thing and the not thing, we can have much more enjoyment in life. If you feel like shooting this down, I will not be offended. Just saying, it works pretty well for me.

    1. I like this. I try to keep in mind, with things I’m not thrilled about, that there is usually an alternative that also doesn’t thrill me. Like 90+ degree heat now vs brutal cold in the winter. Too much rain vs. drought. Loneliness vs being stuck in a bad relationship.

      It can always be worse, and probably is for someone.

  14. I am happy that the excessive heat and humidity has finally broken here. After doing laundry and picking blueberries (14 1/2 lbs now in the freezer for use over the winter) I am sitting in my hammock swing in the shade (for now, it’s going to be in the sun within half an hour) with a lovely breeze blowing and keeping the mosquitos at bay.

    We had a strong storm come through yesterday evening, with horrendous winds and rain; a lot of tree branches are down and a funnel cloud was spotted a few miles away. As far as I know, there were no serious issues. But…it brought nicer weather behind it! And the best part is that the nicer weather came in in time for part of the weekend.

  15. A plumbago auriculata that I saw reminded me that I used to grow them and when really cold weather wiped them out one year, I did not replace them. And they were gorgeous and I loved them. So I went to the local nursery and the guy at the counter said he wasn’t sure what they were. But they probably did not have it but he would check. They had one in the tropical house and I bought it. And next year I am going to buy a rotheca myricoides ugandense, also called a blue butterfly bush. I really need a place to overwinter these things.

  16. Happiness is shredding a lot of paper stuff I don’t need and organizing the stuff I do.
    Happiness is making coffee ice cubes so my ice coffee won’t get diluted.
    Happiness is my sister coming in from Virginia for a few days starting tomorrow.

  17. I went and saw Hamilton with my son yesterday (finally!).

    It made me happy – both the show and spending quality mother-son time.

    It also made me cry, which was unexpected since even with my loose grasp on history, I knew how the story ended.

    I came home and listened to the soundtrack (and cried again).

    It was a good day.

  18. Today I took the trash out by myself, which entailed going down a flight of stairs. This is the first time I’ve been able to do this in six weeks, since the surgery. Feeling that independent made me really happy.

  19. I had cataract surgery on Tuesday and can now see, which makes me very happy. Especially since I’m off to NY on Tuesday for #RWA19, and the whole not-being-able-to-see-people’s-faces thing would have gotten old pretty quickly. 🙂

    1. Semi-alarmed here, Carol. Your doctor’s given you permission to fly this soon after surgery? Of course, happy about the whole *seeing* thing. I remember the feeling … plus now no glasses or contacts, yay.

      1. Yes, it’s not “real surgery” in that it was twilight sleep and no gas bubble in my eye. I saw my doc this morning and am healing beautifully.

  20. Cleaning out and reorganizing three drawers (silverware, other utensils, small tools, etc.) in the kitchen. Yes, I was avoiding plotting my next book, but they still really needed it and they look SO pretty now. Either threw away or packed up to donate a bunch of things that I never really use. Or had triplicates of. I might have a kitchen doohickey problem.

    But clean and organized makes me inordinately happy. At least as long as it lasts.

    Happy for AC in the heatwave.

    But my biggest happy was getting some advice and brainstorming help from one of my online author friends (Donna Andrews) who writes mysteries. I’m starting a cozy mystery, which is WAY outside of my usual writing zone, and it was lovely to be able to tap into the brain and experience of one of my favorite (regular) mystery writers. She is such a sweetheart, and I feel slightly less like hyperventilating now. Plus very fortunate in my author friends.

    1. I did two of the deep drawers under my bed – got rid of a ton of tank tops and tee shirts and can now actually find the things that I wear. It’s such a satisfying feeling, isn’t it?

  21. I had a happy day yesterday. I had a pool party for my birthday and my son drove home 2 hours from college (he’s doing an internship) to see me for the day. My brother and his family drove up 1.5 hours from south Jersey to see me. And my friends and family all came. We were in and out of the pool from 3 until 11:00pm. Oh, and there was ice cream cake, too! Who says you’re too old for a birthday party? 🙂

  22. Barbara Ehrenreich wrote a really good book about the problems with the relentless push for positivity. Bright Sided: How the Relentless Promotion of Positive Thinking Has Undermined America. I loved this book — great social history and critique of the positivity industry (plus a strong defense of us critical thinkers!).

    I had a complicated week, with plenty of lows as well as some great happy moments. A quick list of happy bits: I went hiking yesterday, which is something I really need to do more; My manifesto has over a hundred footnotes, which is probably the sign of a very disturbed mind, but makes me cackle and rub my hands together with glee; Both dogs went to the vet for some annual check-ups and booster shots, and the big dog (who has had a very bad reaction to a previous shot, so we are always nervous) survived everything AND got to french-kiss a vet student; There are some tall lidded pots in my mind, demanding to be made, so I need to get to the pottery studio this week and pull them into being. It’s a good list.

  23. My mother used to say “if you don’t have anything nice/good to say, then don’t say anything at all.” So perhaps I won’t say anything today. It’s not that things are bad, it’s just heat makes me cranky and I slept too much today.

    I need to get out of my own head. Maybe I’ll go tubing tomorrow. Is it dangerous to go tubing alone? There should be plenty of other people on the river.

      1. That was Alice Roosevelt Longworth’s “If you can’t say anything good about someone, sit right here by me”. Another quote was when Senator Joseph McCarthy met her and said he would call her Alice and she replied “Senator McCarthy, you are not going to call me Alice. The truckman, the trashman and the policeman on my block may call me Alice, but you may not.” She was a fascinating woman who was banned from the White House several times because of her witticisms at the expense of the current president.

  24. I’m soooooo happy that the heat broke! The humidity is still high, but that is due to change tomorrow. And I don’t find humidity very difficult if the heat is not high. Whoopee!

  25. Positive platitudes EVERYWHERE at the garden nursery I visited yesterday for fairy garden article. Made me grumpy. Kept focus solely on the ‘whimsical’ paraphenalia.

    On evening this week in the park, saw the best production of “As you Like It” we’ve ever seen. Globe outdid itself in a non-showy way — directing, casting, acting, costumes, sets, music. Magic.

    Tuesday, we went in-store with designer and chose appliances and fixtures for kitchen/bathroom demo and build. Thursday, we *may* have found a general contractor. Friend-recommended, and OMG I can see why. Within six seconds he and designer were chatting away exchanging technical details. They speak each other’s code. Of course, all of this happened because of months of back work and selections all made, so we ALL could know what we’re talking about in a very confined/defined way. Prep work is everything.

  26. I think the best I can do is contribute some Sondheim lyrics.

    Once upon a time I had plenty of nothing
    Which was fine with me
    Because I had rhythm, music, love
    The sun, the stars, and the moon above
    Had the clear blue sky and the deep blue sea
    That was when the best things in life were free

    Then time went by and now I got plenty of plenty
    Which is fine with me
    ‘Cause I still got love, I still got rhythm
    But look at what I got to go with ’em
    “Who could ask for anything more?”
    I hear you query
    Who would ask for anything more?
    Well, let me tell you, dearie

    Got my diamonds, got my yacht
    Got a guy I adore
    I’m so happy with what I got
    I want more!

    I am happy this Sunday because it’s been a not-terribly-hot weekend, I’ve gotten a f**k-ton of work done on the backlist, and the DH took us out for brunch today. Also, Maker’s Mark with Apfel schnapps. Hic.

      1. It’s a great soundtrack, plus of course ‘I’m Breathless.’ This particular song is a bitch to sing until you really really know it. Me and my iPod, long-ass commute, oh baby. 🙂

  27. I am happy the upstairs AC is working. I can’t sleep when it is that hot so I slept downstairs on the sofa for a couple of days. We have a comfy sofa but I missed my bed.

    One night I got woken up at 2AM by the cat patting my face wondering what I was doing in the wrong place.

  28. Okay, I’m gonna do update this week. I just got back from a storytelling festival and that was fun. Sadly I missed out on a karaoke party, which I found out after I got back to civilization because I was out of cell range all weekend. *pouts*

    This week in crush news: he touched me on the back when he did not need to, liked a song I did at karaoke, talked to me outside for an hour after it was over but then went to bed (so not till 1 a.m. but still good). I got a photo of him in a silly hat that is cute. I missed him all weekend even though I know he’s not missing me yet, sigh. I hung out with a cute dog he would have liked and now I’m trying to think of some excuse to show him the dog photos.

    I’ve been taking a storytelling class and have been utterly brain dead to come up with anything that isn’t crush related. I finally gave in and wrote something this week about living in limbo on this topic. I just feel like I have to exorcise the damn idea so I can move on with something ELSE in storytelling life….so I blabbed that I have one and what it’s like to 35 people that showed up at open tell, some of which I knew (and aren’t likely to say and aren’t in my town anyway) and some that did not know me so who cares. I made instafriends with one girl in the same situation, we’ll see if she contacts me since I gave her my info.

    On the one hand, it’s kind of dumb to blab…on the other hand, lord knows he’s never going to run into any of that crowd so I feel pretty safe. Like here, really. If it’s not on Twitter or Facebook it just doesn’t get around any more. I just felt like I had to spit it OUT this weekend, sigh.

  29. Last evening, Stanley the cat decided he wanted to nap on my lap. Serious, head down, nosed tucked in napping – straight down my legs. Once he was asleep, I could resume my knitting. It made me happy that he is that comfortable with me. He’s been an indoor/ outdoor kitty for a year now.

  30. For a month now I’ve focused on taking my daily walk in the morning, and it allllllmost feels like a habit.

    And when I got home from today’s walk, there was an email from a client saying the copy I’d sent was perfect.

  31. Highlight: The projection of the Apollo Saturn V rocket on the Washington Monument last week. Also dinner out with a couple of sets of friends.

    Lowlight: Mom is 3-4 weeks away from being able to full-on walk because her incision is still healing. I nearly cried when the doc said it. Not because I’m a nice person who is sad that my Mom still can’t resume her normal life, but because I am really tired of living out of a suitcase at her house and having to schedule my days around her 3 meals a day. I just want my life and what’s left of the summer back.

    On the positive side, it is healing, just slowly. And now that the bones have healed, I can leave her alone to go to a movie or out to dinner.

    I’ve learned something though–I’m never doing this full-time. I salute anyone who has, but it would make me insane.

    1. When my father died and my mom was 58, she said to me that she was going to have to live with one of her kids because she never had lived by herself. And I said “Don’t look at me”. Even as an adult child we fought all the time.

      When she had her major stroke and had to live in assisted living, I stepped up and handled everything (my siblings were hopeless) and visited her 4 to 5 times a week and took her to therapy twice a week, and car rides, and occasionally out to lunch (not really successful but she liked it). FOR 17 YEARS. We got along okay then but since she could not talk that was a large part of it. She could no longer give me unhelpful advice and meddle. And this consumed my life except for the sister who visited every year and took over for several weeks to a month so we could go on vacation. The other siblings thought it was a great idea if I came to visit with them and provided interpretation skills, which only added another task for me.

      I have never understood how anyone could survive living in the same house with a parent for years at a time. Those people are saints.

      1. I fear that will be my role. I have siblings, but they will not be helpful. And my father is also nearing 80, so while he is very helpful, I can’t leave it all to him. (They are still married but do not live together.)

        1. My grandmother lived with us throughout my childhood. She was mean and selfish and put my mother through hell. When I was in college, Mom finally put Gingi (my grandmother) into a nursing home because Gingi needed constant care. (By then Mom was in her 60s, had been widowed twice, and worked to make ends meet).

          Mom expected me to do the same for her and was shocked when I refused. I found her a great place to live (with lots of music), and I spent as much time with her as I could. She was very happy. I dealt with my guilt instead of wallowing in self-pity and anger. Well, I did some of that, too.

          My advice is to avoid being a victim of anyone else’s view of what is right. Happiness Quotes and assumptions (Doesn’t your mother deserve to be cared for ((by you)) in her old age?) keep you from trying alternatives.

          Okay, now I’ll climb down from my high horse. 😉

          1. When my DH and I got to be in our late 7O’s we were in good health, our DD and her family were in Auckland, our DS in Vancouver. We decided to go into senior housing that would provide care as we grew older. Our DD and DS were very very happy about this as they had ALREADY started to worry!! Try to talk your parents into at least thinking about this. We are content where we are and our “kids” are happy about us.
            P.s.we are on Vancouver island so our DS visits us.

  32. You know when you go for a run in the cold, and you come home and it’s comparatively hot inside so you turn off the heating, and then you think, I’ll just check this email (insert job of choice here) before having a shower, and then it’s two hours later and you’re cold and a bit stiff from running and not stretching and you finally have your shower and it’s pure who-needs-sex bliss?

    That’s what made me happy today. Take that, happy-inspiration quote writers.

  33. I’m very, very happy that New York became the first state to ban cat declawing when Governor Cuomo signed the Bill today!!!

    1. The next time someone tells me to “be amazing” I am going to tell them to “be elsewhere.”

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