Eudaimonia, Hedonism, and Happiness, Oh My!

Everyone wants to be happy – it’s a no-brainer. But what is happiness? The Greek word for happiness is “eudaimonia” which means “having a guiding angel.” In 1776, the Founding Fathers felt it important enough to mention the” pursuit of happiness” in the Declaration of Independence. By the 19th century, economists felt they could measure happiness in units of pleasure, but they learned that money could not buy happiness because a person with twice as much income as another was …

Why Complaining Is Bad for You… but Might Feel Too Good to Stop

My dad was a master complainer. A king of kvetching. He had a symphony of noises and a palette of winces and scowls to make his annoyance known to all. Dad would never have taken part in a growing fad: purple rubber bracelets carved with the words “A Complaint Free World.” Ten million bracelets are supposedly out there in more than 100 countries, although who knows how many are being worn. The bracelet is inspiration for nitpickers, grouches and grumblers …

Online Dating: How About We … Start Again

I suspect most people can remember their first kiss, first date, first love – and have even rated those experiences versus subsequent encounters with rose-colored glasses. How many of us have ended up marrying or living for an extended period with their first love? Or maybe you split up and haven’t heard from them since. I married my high school boyfriend, but not until 20 years after graduation. The marriage did not last (over 60% of second marriages end in …

Mayhem in the Quiet Car

If you’ve ever taken Amtrak, you may be familiar with the “quiet car.” This car (as recently described in a New York Times article) is a haven from the constant noise, music and conversation that invades many of our lives. I myself am a regular quiet car rider. It’s a usually peaceful experience and I use the time to catch up on research reports or read a book. But every so often we experience an “incident.” The Wednesday before Thanksgiving …

The Best-Kept Secret to Weight Loss

Are you ready to learn the best-kept secret to weight loss? It doesn’t involve purchasing a miracle product or submitting to a killer exercise routine. Nor does it involve weighing yourself three times a day or obsessing over every bite you put in your mouth. The best-kept secret is to develop and maintain a happy relationship with yourself. Many of us go to great lengths to please others and develop happy relationships with our spouses, parents, children and co-workers–even strangers. …

On Community

Like many who live in the Northeast, I lost power during Hurricane Sandy. For a week. I’m luckier than some, as I have a generator to at least keep my heat going. But on Tuesday, day two without electricity, my generator died at 6:30am. Within minutes I could feel the house temperature dropping. I don’t panic, I thought, it just meant it needed to be fed oil, right? But OMG the oil was in the garage and with no power …