Monday, May 14, 2012

How To Be Happier

Happiness doesn't come to those who sit back and wait for it.
It comes to those who fight for it.

1. Unless you make make being happy a priority, it might pass you going in the other direction without you ever realizing it.
(Lake Pichola, India. 2007. All photos by LBG.)

So start small. Do something positive for yourself tomorrow morning, whether it's fixing yourself a healthier breakfast, talking to someone gently instead of grumpily, or just closing your eyes and thinking about nothing for ten minutes.
(Home, 2012.)

2. Try your best not to get caught up in the ridiculousness of life. 

It's easier than ever these days to get sidetracked by meaningless pageantry and unnecessary drama. All it does is surround you in a fog of confusion and obscure you from your goal. When this happens, step away from the mist and focus on what matters.

(Rishikesh, 2007.)

Think of the funny way your dog sighs when he's sleeping. Think of the delight on your friend's face when you gave her those wildflowers. Think of how few ingredients you really need to make a simple delicious meal. 

(Home, 2012.)

3. Remember that chaos is in the eye of the beholder. 

This is a photo of a peaceful morning in India.  
(New Delhi, 2007.)

And this is a photo of hardly any traffic to speak of.
(New Delhi, 2007.)

Chaos only becomes frustrating when you choose to look at it that way. Change your attitude and who knows what you might discover? (Penicillin, Post-Its, Velcro and chocolate chip cookies, for starters.)  

Even better, start collecting chaos. But limit it to the stuff that really speaks to your soul. You'll be surprised what you learn about yourself.  
(Home, 2012.)

4. Remember that a ray of light is easiest to spot when it's surrounded by complete darkness. 

Don't let tough times get the best of you. This is easier said than done, I know. But don't give up. Put your trust in something bigger than yourself, turn on some good music and keep looking for the light.
(Rishikesh, 2007.)

You can start by practicing at home.
(Home, 2012.)

5. Remember that even a palace garden is sown and nurtured one square inch at a time.
(Udaipur, 2007.)

Every dream starts out small and fragile and a tiny bit scared. That's why you're there -- to water it and feed it and encourage it and never lose sight of the ultimate vision. There will be a million steps along the way. Take pride in checking off each little one.
(Home, 2012.)

6. In India, they have a saying, "Everything will be all right in the end. So if it is not all right, it is not yet the end."*
(Jaipur, 2007.)

*Line stolen from "The Exotic Marigold Hotel" trailer, which I absolutely cannot wait to see.


Chic Delights said...

All so true. Amazingly colorful pictures. Seeing beauty in everything even amid the chaos! Love that! Thanks for reminding us. May you have a great week.

Karena said...

Lisa thank you so much for this poignant post right is just what I needed!

I want to invite you to come and see my interview with Tina from The Enchanted Home!

Art by Karena

Rosemary Q said...

Thank you for such a beautiful reminder to be happy. I love the quote at the end.

Pamela Terry and Edward said...

All so deliciously true! Especially that bit about the dog sighing. My shoulders relax every time Edward does that.

And I'm right there with you on the Exotic Marigold Hotel! This week! Wish we could go together and eat gummy bears!

Jane said...

I love that saying about the end. So true and so Indian. The way I look at this is that it takes a huge amount of energy and effort to be angry and shouty, rude, sad or passive-aggressive.

It is actually easier to be kind and gentle and smile. And I also agree that you must choose happiness, and fight for it.

pve design said...

Last week, I invited my neighbors over for dessert. I made a lovely pot of tea and had a dessert buffet after a chaotic day it provided so much happiness. One man, 95 - 2 doors down came as I spotted him in his yard cleaning leaves and debris. He was so interesting.

We can all invite happiness in our lives by sharing it with others.

My dog Bentley makes the most wonderful sigh and reminds me daily to sniff, to stroll and to simply love and jump for life is good. Happiness is indeed something to welcome and to embrace.

harriet said...

This is a really lovely post -- I am with you all the way. The film is wonderful and you will love it. Thanks -- it's so rare to read anything positive these days. I love India too.

Helen James said...

what a wonderful way to start my day ! thank you Lisa,

Jeanne Henriques said...

Stepping away from the mist and the raindrops on a train to London and loving your post. It made me happy. :)

Nancy // and while we are here said...

I love your blog!!! Those pictures are so full of beauty and colour. I can scroll up and down again and again... wonderful post!

And btw, I came across this saying, when Shah Rukh Khan was at the Berlinale Film Festival few years ago and was asked in an interview about Bollywood film endings. Since then I have it posted on my Computer screen. :) It is a wonderful saying.

Greetings from Berlin!

DM said...

incredible post, truly! so important to not get sucked into the negative parts of this world.

and if i didn't already want to go to india desperately, now i want it all the more!! thank you!

Emily said...

Happiness is a choice!
I have someone who NEEDS to see this post and I will be sharing it with her today.
Can't wait to see the movie too.

ASL said...

UGH! gummy bears?!?!?!
i'm 47 and i'm on day 2 of braces! yes, braces :-) YES YES YES LISA to this awesome post! Can't wait for the movie & my trip to INDIA in 2013. lisa from japan

Anonymous said...

Beautiful post, really lovely. Thanks.

Lisa Borgnes Giramonti said...

Pamela RG:
You go girl!

Will check it out asap. xx

Love your name so much.

Pamela Terry and Edward:
I wish we could see it together too! Email me after you see it! xxx

You are a shining example of that! xxx

That is the absolute loveliest thing ever! How touched and happy everyone must have been. You RULE. I think I need to do that as well! Hug Bentley for me. xxx

Now I am even more excited to see it!

Helen James:
Anytime! xxx

Jeanne@Collage of Life:
Your comment has made me happy as well. xx

Little Pink Cakes:
Oh, stop. Shah Rukh Khan is a GOD. Love him! Your comment makes that quote even more special.

Go when you are able. You will never regret it. It is nothing less than transformative.

I hope she reads it too. Sending my best thoughts to her. xxx

Lisa from Japan:
Gummy bears are in your future along with a splendid smile! And oh, you lucky duck, going to India -- I'm so envious! xx

Kathy Peck:
Thank you so much too! xx

Julie said...

Just a stunning post. The part about the palace gardens is a very apropos reminder these days. Keep up the great work.

Vava (aka Virginia) said...

I choose joy.
A snippet of joy is always seen on your blog!

Anonymous said...

MMMM LOVE THIS POST:) so beautiful.
I like your blog and Im following..I hope you follow me also:)

have a great week.

LOVE Maria at

Notes From ABroad said...

A lovely post !
I love the photo that shows the traffic with the title, Peaceful morning LOL .. my husband lived in India for some time and he knows about the sounds of life in India .. he got a kick out of it too.besitos, C

Remi said...

Lisa - What a simply wonderful post. I am so glad that I found your blog recently. It is just lovely: full inspiration, creativity, beautiful photos, adventures, and fun. Thank you.

helen tilston said...

Hello Lisa

A beautiful reminder for us.
I love "put your trust in something bigger than yourself"

Have a wonderful week


Angeli said...


Thank you for bringing back the magic and beauty I felt in India. I want to go back again and again.
Thank you for your joy and inspiration you give us.

I cannot wait to see the movie either!


Angeli said...


Thank you for bringing back the majic and beauty I felt in India. I want to go back again and again.
Thank you for your joy and inspiration you give us.

I cannot wait to see the movie either!


Rocio said...

Thank you Lisa,
I was in need of a post like this one.

Take care xx

Lily said...

What a generous gift you've given us of your gorgeous photos and lovely philosophy!
How to be happier... read this blog!

ladylovings said...

I love the beautiful!!! It is amazing what you can do with nature!!!

shiree segerstrom said...

Amazing images and wise sentiments. Thanks for the pep talk! Shiree'

Sandra Sallin said...

Just seeing the movie will make you happier. It is a pleasure and a delight.

The quote from the movie brings a smile to my face as does your post. The post made me take a deep breath and smile.


home before dark said...

I think this is your very best post. I always say it is your job to make yourself happy. If you leave it to someone else, your happiness is being held hostage. Who wants that?

Loved the Indian calm. A colorful meditation.

24 Corners said...

Miss. Ginger is snorting and snoring as we is music to my ears!
Bless you for such a timely, much needed post...beautifully written and shown.
xo J~

24 Corners said...

Lisa...forgive me, I had actually visited you initially to point you in the direction of Susan Branch's blog...she's touring Englad and she's just done a sweet post on 'Charleston'...thought you would enjoy it. I was so thoroughly distracted by your lovely post though, that I'd forgotten to mention it in my previous glad my brain gave me a little reminder nudge!
xo J~

kim at northerncalstyle. said...

Lisa, One of my very favorite posts! This is simple, but perfect! I need to print this so I can look at it each day.
Brilliant and loved the photos.

Have a good weekend!


Maryann - Interior Salvage said...

Sometimes you stumble upon a post like this and you read through it quickly...yada yada yada

Today, this lovely post found me and I read it every so slowly and then again. It was just what I needed.

Thank You for such thoughtful words.

Ellie said...

I am happier already. Thank you.

Sharron said...

The top quote clinched it - I sent this to my friends...Lovely, lovely post. India has been on my bucket list for a long time! Can't wait to see the Marigold Hotel movie.

quintessence said...

Such perfectly paired photos and sentiments - wonderful thoughts for a gray rainy procrastinating-worthy day...

Coulda shoulda woulda said...

I will be sharing #6 with my friends


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