Happy Making




Happy MakingRandom Acts of Niceness

5 comments | May 22nd, 2012

chestist soup

(story submitted by Juliet, a chestist)

Complaining about people is easy mostly because they deserve it.  So many people seem to forget that it is nice to be nice which is why when people are it makes such a difference.

Someone I know but who I wouldn't consider a "good friend" just did the nicest thing for me so randomly.  Not only was I appreciative, I was inspired.  I need to be nicer too and I will be.  {end story}

What was your last random of act of niceness?   What can you do right now?  What are you waiting for?

Tell Her One Thing

3 comments | May 16th, 2012

chestist soup

(idea submitted anonymously, by a Chestist)  

We got this from one of you a couple of months back and have had it in our inbox since because we think it's a really good idea ~ we just couldn't figure out what to do.  Then, lo and behold, it occurred to us...do what we always do, post it.  Easy right?  So here's an idea and a story-starter from one of you for the rest of us:

i think it would be really cool to do a mother/daughter thing on OOC, maybe ask people to submit something that they wish they could tell their mom or wish they could tell their daughter

Just in time for next year's mother's day, or maybe perfectly timed for today...whether for your mother, your daughter, whomever, share that one thing in the comments.  Remember, if you share your story maybe you'll help change hers.

And always let us know if you have any ideas about things and stories you'd like to see here @OOC.  We promise to move faster next time.


Happy MakingHope Bounces Back

4 comments | May 16th, 2012


Yesterday was not a very good day.  A bunch of things that were supposed to work out didn't.  Maybe that means they weren't supposed to; maybe I just wanted them to.  Yes, I wanted them to.  At least any one (or two) of them.

The hard part wasn't so much that they didn't work out ~ it was just dealing with the loss of the optimism I'd had that they would.  Optimism and hope are good.  They keep you moving forward.  That's not always a good thing, but it usually feels good even when it's not.  A loss of optimism sucks.  You can quote me on that.

We all need reasons to believe.  We need to believe in what we're doing, to believe in the roads we're on, what we've chosen and not, the hands we've been dealt and not.  When belief gets punched in the nose it hurts and makes you a bit woozy.

Here's the thing though.  I was sitting around, not so much feeling sorry for myself as I was just feeling badly and trying to figure out just why the fuck things couldn't be easier ...

Love & SexLow Self-Esteem, No More.

7 comments | May 13th, 2012

Chestist Shares

(story submitted by Alicia, a 21 yo Chestist, on OOC rewind )

What we love about this is that it's 1 of you talking to and sharing with all of us. Nice, right?  Here's her story:

I've always been a person with low self-esteem and used to think nobody could love me with all my flaws and my negative view of life.

But now I've learned the lesson: you don't have to be perfect to love and be loved back.

I understand life is unique, and I'm the best me. There's no other you in the world, so play your best role. Now I'm with a boy that loves me for who I am and understands beauty is something relative. He thinks I'm beautiful and that I'll always be.

I hope this helps you. {end story}

We love this, and like Alicia, we hope it helps too.  And again, we also want to throw some love to Alicia for writing and caring enough about others to share what she's learned and learning.  That's cool.


#lifestagesHer Last Mother’s Day?

8 comments | May 11th, 2012

chestist sad

(story submitted by Theresa, a Chestist)

This year's mother's day is bittersweet. On the one hand I derive much joy in my own role as mother. On the other hand I must accept that I am losing my mom, whom I admire and adore.

My mother has ALS, a gradual but unstoppable atrophying of her muscles. She lives in FL, I live in NYC- Skype keeps us in touch. It limits how much of her decline I see. But it's still happening, even if I can't see it.  In the last three months she has lost the ability to transfer out of and into her wheel chair. This newly revealed bit of info does not bode well in terms of her beating the "average" ALS patient's lifespan of 3-5 years. She was diagnosed just before my son was born. My son is two and a half.

I am expecting a second son this August, and as mother's day approaches, I have been aware that my mom is unlikely to get the chance to hold him. Perhaps her health will hold long enough for us to visit her and set an infant ...

Happy MakingNever Happier

8 comments | May 5th, 2012

chestist typewriter

(story submitted anonymously, by a Chestist)









My Message: I'm never happier than when I dance. I'm not terribly good at it, but I love it. {end story}

Ok, so here's the thing we love about this.  We love to dance too.  And we suck at it.  So we don't do it very much...because we don't want to look like a jerk. (Anyone see the Elaine Dancing episode of Seinfeld?)  We find it so inspiring when someone doesn't let their inhibitions or not being very good at something keep them from doing something they love.

What's one thing you love doing?  When are you "never happier than"?

What's one thing you might do more of if you thought you were better at it?

Who wants to come dancing with us tonight?  Let's get our happy on!

#chestismsSmacked In The Inner Eye

26 comments | April 26th, 2012

rising podos

(story submitted by Leona Mizrahi, a chestist)

We ran this amazing story just last week ~ but we got hacked (hacked, I say, hacked) when it was up.  So in case you missed it then, here it is again. 

Before I got married, I thought I knew everything about spirituality and manifestation. Hoisting my self-realization flag in my late 20’s allowed me to manifest all of my sugar coated desires in my early 30’s: my job, my man, my marriage, and our home without a white picket fence.

Surprisingly at 31, I began to feel a spiritual buzz kill. I was disconnected from myself. My inner peace dulled. I was emotionally paralyzed. In moments of despair all of the tools that once cured moments of frustration as a single girl, no longer worked for me as a married young woman. Um, not happily ever after? Ultimate confusion set in.

My debut spiritual journey taught me to ditch toxic relationships and behaviors, meditate to clarity, and allow life to unfold. I had done ‘the work’. Life was unfolding… but my spark was diminishing. What the what!?

Seeking to reignite my ...

Happy MakingWho’s the Happiest Person You Know?

7 comments | April 19th, 2012


(by OOC)

Ok, who's the happiest person you know ~ and why are they so happy?

What can you learn from them?  What can we?  Happy is as happy does, after all.

#bodiesShit Happens

12 comments | April 18th, 2012


(story submitted anonymously, by a Chestist)

OK, so this isn't a typical story for us to post, but it's not a typical story for us to get either.  The reason we're putting it up is it made us think.  it made us think about how we do and don't overcome embrassments, and why some of the things that are most common among us can still be so shameful and embarassing.  Yes, a couple of very deep thoughts from a story about poop.  Here it is:

I pooped in my pants the other day.  I was driving home after a night out with my GF when my stomach started to cramp and I started to sweat.  I knew right away I needed to find a bathroom and I also knew there was no way I was going to.  To make matters even worse, the Freeway was all backed up and I couldn't even get off to find a dark place on the side of a road to get sick.  It was like a Bridesmaids moment - except it was happening to me and it wasn't funny.

I was panicing, ...


6 comments | April 16th, 2012


(by OOC)

One of the best pieces of parenting advice we ever got was this.  You know when a baby cries?  Let the baby know crying is okay.  Don't try and shoosh away what the child is feeling.  Let them feel it.

Most of us, pick them up anbd gently start ricking them and shooshing them and saying something like "oh, don't cry.  Don't be sad, baby, it's going to be okay."

Why do we do that?  Why not let the baby cry and be sad on their way to being happier and feeling more better?  It's like we're demonizing an inevitable part of our emotional lives.  Sadness isn't bad, it's sad.  We all feel sad, we all will feel sad, and while hopefully we won't spend a lot if time in that space, we often don't give oursleves the permission to spend any time there.  Why is that?

How do you deal with sadness in your life?  How do you work your way throught it and past it ~ or don't you?  Do you let yourself feel all your emotions, or do you try and compartmentalize ...

Happy MakingCan You Have Too Much Happiness?

6 comments | April 9th, 2012


(by OOC via bigthink.com)

Can happiness possibly have a downside?  In a word, so it seems (get it, that's not 1 word).

According to this article, having too much of a good thing, even happiness, can turn out badly...When it comes to income levels, life expectancy, education and being attentive to risks, too much happiness can drag you down. "Psychologists have documented a set of cognitive deficits, dangerous in some contexts, that come with the warm wash of feeling that all is right with the world...contemporary psychology reminds us that happiness is the byproduct of certain ways of behavior. It is not an end that can be achieved by pursuing bliss directly. That, they say, is a recipe for unhappiness."

Forget what the cognitive psychologists think...what do you think?  Have you ever had too much of a good thing? What was it?  What about happiness - is it possible to be too happy?


#chestismsWhen Things Don’t Go The Right Way

8 comments | April 7th, 2012

chestist threads

(story submitted anonymously, by a Chestist)

There's something so sweet, simple and inspring about this reader's advice to all of us.  Here's what she wrote:

You can take as many quizzes as you want or go to as many fortune tellers as you please but life isn't as easy as 1-2-3. You never know what's going to happen, no matter how much you wish you would.

You never can predict what will happen in life. Don't be so hard on yourself when things don't go the right way for you. And as much as it is hard to, you have to believe. I know how corny it sounds and how ridiculous it is. But it's the truth. Insecurity is just a way to doubt yourself. Don't doubt.  (end story}

Don't doubt.  Such simple advice, sometimes so hard to do.  You doubt yourself much?  When?  Why?  What's it going to take for you to stop?  Go on and do as she says...believe in you. 


#bodiesHow I Learned to Love Myself

4 comments | April 7th, 2012

enjoy your life

(story submitted by Annette, a Chestist)

You never know what words will change someobdy's life (even if it's yours) until after they're said.  Or, as in this reader's case, read:

I used to hate the way I looked.  I was teased for being too black and too fat.

But then I read this scripture "you are fearfully and wonderfully made" and it began to sink in - that despite of what others thought of me, I am beautiful just the way I am

That's when I truly learned to love myself and became comfortable in my own skin. I'm never going to be a size 6. I don't even want to, and I love being me. Sexy, sassy and wonderfully made!  {end story}

You ever come across a line, a book, a lyric, a painting, have someone say something to you that changed your sense of self for the better?  What were the words, and why'd they make a difference?  Maybe your sharing them now will help another feel as you do...let's press rewind and share what was said. 


#lifestagesWorst Day Ever.

5 comments | April 5th, 2012

chestist black scratch

(story by Nicole, a Chestist)

A few days ago we tweeted a question, asking what was the worst day you'd ever had.  Here's Nicole's story - about her 2 worst days ever.

My "worst" day got replaced with one even worse - it happened almost 2 years ago and shattered my reality.

At the time i was 38, the mother of two young children & married.  my parents' marriage was something i had always looked up to as the ultimate union - they were going to be celebrating their 40th year of marriage in the fall of 2010.  So when my father called me in May of that year to announce he was leaving my mom ---- i was not only shocked, but also very, very sad.  Not just for them, but for myself as well - my idealized version of their marriage was shattered.  i cried, my dad cried and then when my mom got on the phone, she just sounded numb.  She was as shocked as i was, as we all were.  My brother and his wife were completely caught off guard, as ...

#lifestages33 Is The Happiest Year of Our Lives

6 comments | April 3rd, 2012


(OOC via Time)

New research finds that the happiest year of our lives is 33.  How's that for specificity?

A British study found 70% of respondents over the age of 40 saying they weren't "truly happy" until they got to the magical double 3s.

“The age of 33 is enough time to have shaken off childhood naiveté and the wild scheming of teenaged years without losing the energy and enthusiasm of youth,” psychologist Donna Dawson said in the survey’s findings. “By this age innocence has been lost, but our sense of reality is mixed with a strong sense of hope, a ‘can do’ spirit, and a healthy belief in our own talents and abilities.”

Interestingly, just 16% of the respondents pined for their grade school years, and only 6% said they were happiest when in college. 

Digging a little deeper, happiness at 33 was a result of a nice mixture of doing well professionally and  having a support system made up of family and friends. "Not surprisingly, 36% said they were happiest when they had children" which suggests to us that 64% didn't say that (we're good at ...