Today’s mission: joy spotting

This is not good, I have bloggers block. Now you’d think this couldn’t be possible. After all, I spend all day writing about health, how on earth can I not come up with something to say on here? Well the answer to that is, everything I’m writing about now is going in magazines in January and February so I can’t tell you anything about it yet – in three months I should have loads to say (in fact, if I were sensible, I’d be writing the posts now and using that automated thingy to publish them for Valentines day or something) so I figured, okay Helen, why don’t you go back and see what you were writing about three months ago and what made you go ‘ooooooh’ then that the nice people reading this might have missed (I get patronizing when I talk to myself). So I had a look – seems I was in a psychobabbly place this summer. Lots of stuff on happiness and thinking positive……but my absolute favourite tip involved this little gizmo below that I spotted on

The Happiness Blackboard: it helps you feel good about life

It’s a Chinese invention called the Happy Star Blackboard – and seriously cheap therapy. The idea is this, the blackboard represents the night sky. Every time even the smallest thing throughout the day makes you feel happy you draw a little star on this with a white pen. Theory is, the more you stars you start to see, the better you realize life is.

This is good as, as my current favourite happiness guru Dr Timothy Sharp  from Australia’s Happiness Institute recently told me, “ We are very good at suffering the tyranny of ‘when’ regarding happiness.” Ie we say ‘I’ll be happy when I’ve lost a stone/got a new job/sorted out my useless boyfriend (insert your goal here). The problem with that is it means you don’t realize how many times you feel good each and every day before you reach that goal. It’s also well known in happiness circles that the more you learn to look for the good in your day, the more of it you spot and the happier you become.

Personally I’m not keen on the night sky idea, it’s too monochrome for me. I’d want my happy board to be a big white piece of paper with lots of coloured dots all over it as I think that would cheer me up even further whenever I looked at it. Which again proves my point that I should write these posts three months in advance, then I could have added a little picture here of my brilliant abstract of joy. But hey ho, instead, I’ll just tell you five things that have made me happy today and that would have warranted a dot….

1) The fact that the beans on my toast at the café this morning were just that right side of runny/stodgy – you know when you just overheat them enough.

2) That the book I couldn’t decide whether to buy on was right there front centre when I walked into the library this morning. Now it’s mine, for a fortnight, for free…..result.

3) The six people who stood completely patiently and waited for me to hobble past them on the thin bits of pavement outside the library instead of barging past me or forcing me to change direction too fast.

4) Wearing tights – I haven’t been able to bend quite right to put them on until now. I finally don’t have cold feet for the first time in 10 days.

5)  The incredible Leah Dieterich makes me laugh out loud every time as she writes letters to things she appreciates each day. My favourite today ‘Dear Rotten Smelly Kitchen Garbage; thanks for being the result of decaying plant matter and therefore proof I’m eating healthily.’

So come on, what’s been your random moment of joy today?


  1. Sally Brown

    This blog just keeps getting better and better. Thanks for the thxthxthx tip – love it!

  2. healthehelen

    Thank you. Thxthxthx is genius. I’m so pleased she got a book from it.

    Reply this thing on? Talk to me, it's lonely down here

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