Is your glass half full?

What will you do to make yourself happy today?

It’s a question I sometimes ask people, an extension of a question I’ve made a habit to ask myself each day.

Sunday Baroque listeners frequently say the music on the program makes them happy and provides mental and emotional nourishment. Recently a listener told me he likes Sunday Baroque, in part, because he can hear the smile in my voice. What a heartwarming compliment! The smile in my voice is my authentic self, because I love my work and I love connecting with listeners. I am also keenly aware and appreciative that I’m naturally hardwired to be a happy and optimistic person. Producing a music program for people who enjoy it gives me great joy and satisfaction, and I nurture my natural inclination to be positive with other activities and personal connections that support and enhance my happiness.

Most of these are the “small picture” things … get some exercise, chat with a friend, listen to music, play my flute, read a good book, play with the cat, try a new recipe, plan or complete a project, watch a silly movie or video that makes me laugh or provides food for thought. These are simple tasks and simple pleasures, and they are things that contribute incrementally to giving me happiness each day and over time. They provide order — and disorder! — that is pleasing and gratifying. They also give me a sense of satisfaction, as well as a sense of some control over my fate. When I look back over days, weeks and months, I see evidence that I can steer the course of some things that are most important to me and I need not settle for having regrets.

There are plenty of studies demonstrating that optimism is good for one’s health. Even people who are not necessarily hardwired for optimism can tweak some of their behaviors and change their internal narratives to see things through a more optimistic lens.

What about you? Is your glass half full or half empty? What do YOU do to make yourself happy?


4 comments on “Is your glass half full?

  1. Raymond Harrison on

    Thank you for your wonderful post! My glass is always full, but Life keeps slipping in and sipping my nectar. Optimism is fullness, and yes, it is those everyday seemingly small pleasures that truly are the important ones: listening to music, feeding the birds, playing with the cats, reading good writing, writing new poems, watching the birds in the garden, taking nature photographs, enjoying a home-cooked meal, listening to the rain, landscaping in the garden, attending a drama, attending a live musical concert. I recently attended a concert by Ross Daly and Kelly Thoma who are world class musicians and composers living on the island of Crete. They only travel to the US once a year for ten days and they are not to be missed. They specialize in playing the Cretan Lyra which is apparently the precursor to all European stringed instruments. Optimism is an interior state of mind. The Optimistic Mind creates the Optimistic Society. When Creativity reigns as the center of our consciousness, ecstasy and optimism result. In the current time, the Optimistic Mind is fighting against the Opportunistic Society. I hope we will arrive at the realization that a life that honors Nature, Spirit, Art, Creativity, and Optimism is our greatest human opportunity. Thank you for your wonderful program.

    • Suzanne Bona on

      Your glass is always full, too! I love to hear this! Thanks for your lovely comment.

  2. Ed G. on

    I’ll paraphrase Leonard Cohen, when he was listing all the antidepressants he had taken over the years & the analysis he had been thru, yet he couldn’t help but notice that “happiness kept creeping thru”…..
    I’m kind of like that, I don’t have to do anything “special”, it just keeps creeping thru (since I was a kid!).

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