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Happiness as a Second Language

Misery May Love Company, but Your Company Should Not Love Misery

Valerie Alexander | Posted 05.21.2016 | Healthy Living
Valerie Alexander

All it takes is a little thought, effort and commitment, and any workplace can reduce costs, increase productivity and maximize profits by making happiness a priority

What Amazon Fails to Understand About Readers (...and Authors)

Valerie Alexander | Posted 02.17.2015 | Books
Valerie Alexander

I don't want my new relationship with a book, with all its promise of knowledge and thrills and emotions, to start with the action. I want that slow build of courtship that leads to longer and deeper satisfaction, which only a few "get-to-know-you" pages can supply.

Unhappy People Can Rain on Anything -- Even Coffee, Pirates and Free Doughnuts!

Valerie Alexander | Posted 11.20.2014 | Healthy Living
Valerie Alexander

Exactly one year ago, a study came out from researchers at Beihang University in China examining more than 70 million tweets from 200,000 users on Wei...

For Happiness, the Delete Key Is Your Friend

Valerie Alexander | Posted 11.09.2014 | Healthy Living
Valerie Alexander

Recently, I had to ask a friend for help. This person is in a position to help me, with very little sacrifice, and yet, he said, "No." He had a long e...

The Power of V-Day and Why #BringBackOurGirls Is Not Enough

Valerie Alexander | Posted 07.22.2014 | Women
Valerie Alexander

These actresses find depth and strength and power that surprise even themselves when they begin not so much delivering Eve Ensler's words, but channeling them.

#FacebookFail and the 'We Know Best' Folly of Corporate America

Valerie Alexander | Posted 07.16.2014 | Business
Valerie Alexander

CASE #1: The first "grown-up" shoes I ever owned was a pair of faux-leather black pumps from Kinney Shoes that I got when I was 11. I loved them so m...

Let Them Eat Cake!

Valerie Alexander | Posted 06.23.2014 | Healthy Living
Valerie Alexander

We are all going to die. Our parents are going to die. There is nothing any of us can do to stop that. So if you truly love someone, help that person find the most happiness they can during their time on this plane of existence, even if that shortens it slightly. I'd rather have five good years than eight lousy ones.

Choosing Happiness Over Fear, and How One Family Turned Misfortune Into a Mitzvah!

Valerie Alexander | Posted 06.11.2014 | Healthy Living
Valerie Alexander

Is it too late to get your deposits back? Don't marry the wrong person. Throw a party instead, host a reunion, feed the hungry. Celebrate the awesome achievement of choosing happiness over fear! Let others manage their own reactions, and if they want to judge you, let 'em.

My College Dreams Are Finally Coming True (and I Graduated Two Decades Ago)

Valerie Alexander | Posted 05.23.2014 | College
Valerie Alexander

If a young person in your life is college-bound, make a big deal of it! Have an acceptance dinner, throw a college shower to give her everything she needs. Pair that teenage matriculant with an older, college-grad family member to be a mentor, confidant and friend.

Why in the World Do We Need an International Day of Happiness, Anyway?

Valerie Alexander | Posted 05.18.2014 | Healthy Living
Valerie Alexander

Why should rabid capitalists like us care about anyone's happiness but our own? Think of it as enlightened self interest. Dozens of studies in the past few years all reach the same basic conclusion on this point -- happiness is achievable, and a happy society is more profitable.

Hey, Let's Stop Being Idiots, Okay?

Valerie Alexander | Posted 04.30.2014 | Green
Valerie Alexander

In Los Angeles, since Jan. 1, we've been struggling to overcome the horrors of the Great Grocery Bag Upheaval. To sum it up: Our leaders have banned plastic grocery bags altogether and now require shoppers to pay for paper bags. Oh, the humanity!

Don't Drive Yourself Crazy! Here are 5 Ways to Drive Yourself Happy -- Every Day

Valerie Alexander | Posted 12.09.2013 | Healthy Living
Valerie Alexander

If you're stuck in traffic, getting stressed out about it will not change your circumstances. Life's a journey, not a destination, so do what you can to enjoy the ride.

You Are Not a Unique Snowflake

Valerie Alexander | Posted 11.20.2013 | Healthy Living
Valerie Alexander

It's the whole blanket of snow that makes the world beautiful, and we need every flake to be part of it. Including you.

To Me, Mean Pictures Aren't Funny (Even the Really Funny Ones)

Valerie Alexander | Posted 11.11.2013 | Healthy Living
Valerie Alexander

That is a human being in that picture. A person who got up that day, got dressed and left the house without ever thinking it would make her the subject of public ridicule, simply because her shorts are too tight.

Stop Eating Frogs! Just Be Happy

Valerie Alexander | Posted 10.30.2013 | Healthy Living
Valerie Alexander

Instead of fixating on how much you dread a task, and forcing yourself to do it first, try changing your mindset about the supposedly unpleasant thing you have to do. Decide in advance that performing that job will make you happy, then come up with a list of all the ways that will happen.

Coming Out of the Closet for Happiness

Valerie Alexander | Posted 10.27.2013 | Good News
Valerie Alexander

I was afraid that fact might cost me book sales. I was afraid that people who cling to the belief that they have the right to define the marriages of total strangers might not buy my little happiness book if they knew where I stood on the issue.

You Can't Predict the Future, Which Should Make You Very Happy

Valerie Alexander | Posted 10.24.2013 | Healthy Living
Valerie Alexander

The future is uncertain, so be happy now, regardless of your bad day, week or year. Next time you can't find a parking spot, or miss a plane, or have your plans hindered, before you get mad, remember that this could be the best thing that ever happens to you

Four Rules of Happiness That You Can Ignore

Valerie Alexander | Posted 10.01.2013 | Good News
Valerie Alexander

Happier people are more productive, live healthier lifestyles, make better parents, and so on. But have we gotten to the point where happiness is a burden? Where the things we're supposed to do to "be happy" are causing more stress than joy?