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It takes Happy to make Happy!

by Lisa on January 7, 2011

I have a theory!  Actually, I have many, but this is a really good one (if I do say so myself).

Do you know the saying, “It takes money to make money?”

The concept is that if you have money to start with, it’s easier to make more.

Now, I like to apply that to happiness and state of mind.

It takes Happy to make Happy.

When you learn about meditation, positive thinking, lifestyle improvement plans, stress management techniques…

Don’t save them for when you need them!  Practice them and bring them into your life when you already feel good. That way, when you feel crappy, you’ll be more able to access those tools and thought patterns—if you try and start using them when you feel down or stressed, (1) it’s more difficult and (2) you may not even want to.

Remember when I wrote about this: Dance Your Blues Away and Your Health Closer?  Meditation is not just sitting quietly in a room and emptying your head—it can be the complete opposite! Practice it when you feel good or great, and when you’re down or stressed you’ll be able to access it much more easily.  We could delve into the concept of neuroplasticity here, but I’ll spare you :)

One thing I do? Make lists (in my head, usually) of things that make me feel good. Sometimes they seem simple, but they’re still things that make my life good.

Friends. In case you've just met me, that's me on the left, and my longest-lasting friend Kyle from on the right

College Roomies!

The LA cousin (who is shooting a show in Vancouver right will come out this spring on AMC--I'll keep you posted!)

My fabulous super awesome BFF, who indulges me and supports me and every crazy thing I come up with (and every mess I make!)

My sister, who was in my life for 25 years...

...before she left this amazing little lovey in my life...

...who has turned into THIS! My 7 year-old BFF. He owns my heart, even when I can't get him to stop saying the word fart.

Clearly, I am One Lucky Duck! :)

Obviously, I’m happy about a lot more than this, but today…this is what happiness feels like.  So I started out feeling good today, and now I feel even better :)

I’d love to hear what makes you happy.  If you had to practice feeling better when you already feel good…what does good look like in your life?

Just remember…

Sometimes you’re the windshield…

...and sometimes you're the bug.

When you’re feeling more like the windshield…practice feeling even better, and you’ll be surprised how much that helps on those days when you’re feeling like the bug :)

  • Beth @ DiningAndDishing

    Lovely post! I always love to learn more about the writer behind the blog :) .

  • Kristina @ life as kristina

    aww-this post makes me want to cry-I love it. You look so much like Jen:)

  • Stefanie

    What a great post Lisa! I honestly believe those are words to live by: it takes happy to make happy! The power of positivity is huge!

    And I LOVE LOVE all of your pictures. You’re so gorgeous and I feel like I know you a little bit more now. :)

  • Erica

    SO true. “think happy thoughts” :) . It change your mood around in a minute. I have SO many things to be grateful for – my health, my family, friends, incredible husband, puppy dog, etc etc. I could literally go on all day. It was great to learn a little more about you

  • Christin@purplebirdblog

    What a sweet post! You’re gorgeous, and so is the kiddo. The last picture made me laugh! :)

  • Kate (What Kate is Cooking)

    I loved this post and I definitely agree with it! Your happiness is contagious :)

  • Kyle

    I love it! We need a better photo of the two of us, though. (Ok, a better photo of me… you look fantastic, as usual. :) )

    I've been saying for a long time- smile at yourself in the mirror before you walk out the door in the morning. Starting the day feeling a smile on your face and seeing one too will just make the day begin well and set a good feeling and intention for your day. (Intentions? That's a familiar yoga word…)

    Happiness can certainly be contagious! You've started my day off well. Looking forward to our fun plans this weekend!

  • Heather (Where's the Beach)

    Oh I love the idea of have happy to make happy. Great post and love all the pictures and telling us a bit about who's who (especially for us new readers).

  • TxGrThmb

    Love cilantro………………do you think when we crave or really love a food, it's our bodies telling us that we need it to some degree? I put cilantro on sandwiches instead of lettuce even. Thanks for all your great stuff.

  • Stephanie

    hah! That windshield picture is just toooo cute! I'm at the happiest place in my life and positive thinking is truly what's gotten me there. That plus the three bestest kiddos and the greatest bf a woman could ask for doesn't hurt either! Great post…it made me….HAPPY. :)

  • Stefanie (The New Healthy)

    Wah, I just added a comment and I'm not sure where it went! So I'll do it again.

    This is a great post! I truly believe that 'it takes happy to make happy' are words to live by. The power of positivity is so great! :)

    I LOVE all of your photos! You are so gorgeous and now I feel as if I know you a bit more. :)

  • Lisakthrives

    Maybe we can photog ourselves this weekend :)

  • lindsay cotter

    I couldn't agree more. And practice makes perfect!

  • Angie

    I love that scarf and the 'lil bug on the windshield!!

  • Lisakthrives

    I definitely think there is much validity to that theory—our bodies are

    super intelligent, we just have to learn how to listen to them more often!


  • Lisakthrives

    Thanks for being a new reader :)

  • Lisakthrives


  • The Cosmic Cowgirl

    My motto for about twenty years has been: “The place to be happy is here, the time to be happy is now.” I have this posted on my front door, my classroom, my day planner, etc. Works for me.

  • Lisakthrives

    Thanks Stefanie, I really think you're right–positivity is the key to a lot

    of great stuff in life :)

  • Christina

    you have such perfectly toned arms!!!

  • Lisakthrives

    Haha, thanks!

  • Lisakthrives

    Oh man, that scarf is my fave! I bought it in Santa Fe, and thought I was all fancy…and then came home and saw it in the mall.

  • Lisakthrives

    Yep—it's all about practice!

  • CathyK

    great photos, lisa! i loved seeing the people in your life who make you happy. and you are right: this IS a pretty darn good theory that you have proposed!
    i've started trying to notice and appreciate moments where i am just happy in the moment. definitely my two nieces make me happy…well, being with friends and family in general bring happy times!
    have a great weekend!

  • Madeleine @ Stepping to the Bright Side

    Wow, Lisa, thanks for this. It’s a perfect day for me to get this advice :) Love the photos of your loved ones!

  • Healthy Chocoholic

    That's a really awesome philosophy!!!!
    Great post! =D

  • Kayla

    I really really like that! It takes happy to make happy, that's something I need to hang on my wall!

  • Maryann

    You are gorgeous! Love all the photos :)

    Making lists= so therapeutic to me! Same with music.

    Other things that make me happy: friends/family, the bf, laughing, and good food!

  • Lisakthrives

    Thanks Cathy. Have a great weekend!

  • Lisakthrives

    Great list—good food is definitely high on my list too :)

  • Katherine: Unemployed

    fake it till you make it!

  • Katie

    Beautiful Post!

    Happiness to me is living my life to the fullest, not sweating the small stuff, giving it my all, being good to all, never losing touch with my inner soul, and just loving life : )

  • Cyndi @ Weightless Life

    What a great post! I love the idea of taking concepts from other disciplines and applying them to happiness. It takes happy to make happy sounds like a great mantra to have.

  • meri

    I think you hit the nail on the head here- the more I reflect on the blessings and the joy in life, the happier I naturally feel. Happiness grows more happiness :)
    This is a very sweet post! Good mood to be in now for the weekend I think.

  • Lisakthrives

    I love that—happiness grows more happiness!

  • Lisakthrives

    What a great way to live :)

  • Lisakthrives

    I use that saying a lot sometimes :)

  • Peggy Labor

    Aww! Love all of those cute photos! I'm definitely working on my positive attitude and completely agree with you that starting out and keeping positivity and happiness is far more enjoyable than to walk into something negatively!


    I loved reading this! At work (I work on a a transplant unit in a hospital) I always tell this to my patients. I say “when you have a cold if you walk around saying 'waaah i feel like crap' then you're gonna feel like crap' (I don't actually say crap, haha), but if you say' you know, I do feel OK today, then you're already up the hill'. Perspective is everything :)

  • Lisakthrives

    I agree! It really is all about perspective. Sometimes it's tough for

    people to see that (when they're “stuck” in a negative perspective), but

    it's so true :)

  • Madeline

    Such a cute post! I've never heard that “windshield” quote before!

  • Lisakthrives

    I can't remember where I heard it, but it cracks me up!

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