Happy Making




#chestismsAdele Has Insecurities…

2 comments | December 31st, 2011


...which makes her oh-so-human, no?  Maybe even super-human for speaking them outloud (you know how we feel about that here.)

In this little sinppet found somewhere in our travels across the interwebs, she says this about the pressures to be perfect while living in the public eye:

“I’ve seen people where it rules their lives, who want to be thinner or have bigger boobs, and how it wears them down. And I don’t want that in my life. I have insecurities, of course, but I don’t hang out with anyone who points them out to me.”

What do you say, let's do like Adele does and inthe new year, resolve to spend time only with those who build us up, and don't tear us down.  That means ourselves too, of course.  'Tis human to be insecure.  'Tis self-defeating and punishing to to spend undo time with those who make us feel worse not better. 

Happy 012, Chestists. 

#lifestagesPost-Holiday, Then and Now

14 comments | December 27th, 2011

yellow sun rays

(story by Mir, from WouldaCouldaShoulda)

When I was a kid, Christmas was a Very Big Deal Indeed. This is actually pretty funny when you consider that we were Jewish (and not very religious), but my parents were willing to buy into the hoopla for us kids. We had a lot of plants in the house, and even some sort of potted pine in the corner of the living room. That became the de facto "Christmas tree," and on Christmas morning there was always a couple of gifts from Santa waiting for us beneath the pine.

We, of course, always went to the mall sometime before the holiday to sit on Santa's lap and tell him what to bring us. It was all very logical that way.

The build-up to the big day always seemed very suspenseful. First there were those last days of school before vacation---they always seemed to drag on and on---and then it was impossible to fall asleep on Christmas Eve. But finally the big morning would come and there it was: Our Santa present.

I ...

#lifestagesHappiness @Work

comment | December 21st, 2011


(story by OOC via The Source)

Research involving 9,000 people globally on what makes for happiness @ work found that those amongst us who are happiest with our jobs:

Stay twice as long in them Spend 2x the amount of time at work focused on what they are paid to do Take 10x less sick leave Are 2x more likly to think they're achieving their potential

Happiness obviosuly (and you can quote us on this) has big upside for the indivudla and the enterprise.  Imagine that.  The reserach (conducted by the iOpene er Institute), found there are 5 key elements to feeling happy with what we do and its subsequent impact on how well we do it:

1. Contribution.

2. Conviction.

3. Culture.

4. Commitment.

5. Confidence.

While you can read the whole article here, we're wondering on a scale of 1-10 (ten being in-love with your job)  how happy are you at work?  Is it you, the job, or are you lacking - or is the company lacking - in one of the 5 things listed above?

And finally, how much does how happy you are at work spill-over into how happy you are generally?  ...

Love & SexKiss Me, You Fool!

29 comments | December 20th, 2011


(story by Mir, from WouldaCouldaShoulda)

I recently wrote a post about TLC's "The Virgin Diaries," and while the truth is that I love a good trainwreck, I've realized that my horrified fascination with this particular spectacle goes deeper than that. It's not (just) that I love seeing people behave in cringe-worthy ways. It's not (just) that I'm fascinated by the psychology behind life choices different than my own.

No. See, I've realized that the primary reason I'm unable to turn away from this particular show is that I take kissing very seriously. Really! I view kissing as one of the singular pleasures of this mortal life.

[And I'm not using "kissing" as a euphemism, here. I have similar feelings about, er, more intimate activities as well. But I feel particularly strongly about kissing because 1) it's fairly harmless, even if you decide to engage in it casually, 2) it's okay for most everyone (excepting some of the folks on that TV show), even not-quite-adults, to share with a romantic interest, and 3) it's just plain happy-making. For most people, anyway.]

Watching people kiss so awkwardly in "The Virgin ...

#thecumulativeeffectYou’ll Feel As Good As What You Buy?

5 comments | December 19th, 2011


(story by OOC via SaulThisWeek.com)

At the height of the Holiday shopping season, we bring you this (no need to thank us).  Researchers at the University of Minnesota have determined we can make ourselves feel better by buying big-name brands.

The study in the Journal of Consumer Research (and reported at www.sciencedaily.com), showed that buying a "prestigious brand with an appealing personality such as Nike or Harley-Davidson, can improve your self-image, by rubbing off on the way you see yourself."  Here's how they conducted the research (and from the original article):

"They asked a group of women to carry a shopping bag --either a Victoria's Secret shopping bag or a plain one --for an hour while shopping at a mall. Then the women rated themselves on a list of personality traits.

The result? The shoppers who carried the Victoria's Secret bag perceived themselves as more feminine, glamorous and good-looking than those with the plain bag.

In a subsequent experiment, researchers found some people felt smarter when they carried a pen embossed with the logo from super-brainy MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology). And this was true even after some of the ...

#lifestagesGrowing Into Oneself

3 comments | December 15th, 2011


(story submitted by Kate in Michigan, a Chestist)

I am wondering. 40 is the beginning of a new and improved part of my life. Or something.

Until I turned 10, I was cute, shy, sweet, devious, lying, clever, smart, chubby.

From 10 to 20, I was trying to be old. Trying to be awesome, sexy, popular, smart, and awesome (yes, I said it again). I succeeded in being moderately smart, popular with a very limited group of people, and fairly pretty but falling short of sexy, and not really awesome. I showed glimmers, but it didn't happen.

From 20-30, I tried to be superwoman. I tried to be powerful, sexy, smart, organized, efficient, loving, successful, talented, and amazing. I succeeded in being smart, fairly sexy, pretty organized and efficient, mostly loving, and mildly successful. I was beginning to feel powerful. I worked my ass off. I tried hard to be everything to everybody. I managed to be a good daughter, wife, mom, teacher, player. What I didn't manage? Myself.

30-40 was pretty awesome and pretty friggin' awful. I was learning to be a mom, a wife, a professional. I went through some ...

#bodiesThe Self-Esteem Act is Dumb

26 comments | December 2nd, 2011


(submitted by lailainthecity)

We're all about diversity of opinions here @ Camp OOC...even the ones we don't agree with.  Imagine!  That said, there's a lot in Laialinthecity's comments we do agree with.  The first paragraph pretty much entirely.  As for the rest, well, for us, not so much.  But you decide for you, and let us and Laila know what you think. Here's what she does:

The "Self-Esteem Act"? Why do we have to keep lowering the bar for everything, and making it law no less? When I see someone svelte walking down the street, I don't ask them if they're wearing Spanx. When I see someone with a smile that lights up the room, I don't ask them if they're caps. When I see someone with waist length full bodied curly hair, I don't ask if it's a lace-front wig. Because the truth about what they look like when they get up in the morning, doesn't belong to me, it belongs to them. There's plenty of artifice in world, it starts with lip gloss when you're a teenager. So what?

Nobody is perfect, that should be common sense, ...

Love & SexTogether

8 comments | December 2nd, 2011


(by OOC via TheGirlProject)

We first bumped into these amazing images of teenaged girls a few months back, all of which can be found in Please Read (If At All Possible): The Girl Project, by Kate Engelbrecht.

Since we both like a good cliche and happen to believe that a picture can actually be worth 1000 words, we'll be featuring a handful of images from the book over the next week.  We're hoping you'll share with us what words (even if not 1000 of them) come to mind...what they make you think of, and how they make you feel.

Our first reactions here @OOC HQ, will serve as the titles for these posts.

To check out more of The Girl Project and Kate's work, please also check out:



#thecumulativeeffectThanks To Ryan Murphy and GLEE

4 comments | November 24th, 2011


As many a rock-star has said as their show has ended "THANK YOU."  Today, we're reprinting a story we first put up on Huffington Post. IN it we give thanks for Ryan Murphy and Glee.  Here we go:

I practically assaulted Ryan Murphy the other night.

Not in a bad way -- though he might have thought so. But I did pretty much hit him over the head and punch him in the stomach with effusive praise and adoration. And I'm not even a Gleek. No, my sycophantishness (sic) wasn't because of the show per se, but because of what the show's done. In my opinion, Glee's one of the most culturally important TV shows -- ever. And ever is a long time.

Why so much love for a show I don't really watch? Because Ryan's used the show and his platform as a creator to change the world. Hyperbole? Nope. He's saved lives and made lives better. He's given kids (and people) of all shapes, sizes, colors, persuasions, orientations, abilities and disabilities, the permission, and at least some measure of comfort, to be themselves, to withstand peer pressure, and to break-free of ...

#chestismsBuddha, a Chestism

10 comments | November 24th, 2011


We first posted this Chestism in August.  As we go into the Thanskgiving holiday, we're reposting some of our OOC Faves, some of the thoughts we're thankful for having been able to share, and this is one of them. Happy, happy, you guys.  XO, OOC








"Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment."


Buddha has wisdom and game.  Presence is hard.  For us any way.  We also consider it one of the most important parts of living fully and happily, and not spending untold amounts of time on worry and wonder.  But that's just us.


What about you?  You as present as you want to be?  When you find yourself less than present, what brings you back to the moment?  Any tips on presence and NOW you care to share with the crowd?   

Happy MakingToday, brought to you by the word: Thanks

7 comments | November 23rd, 2011


Gratitude is considered by many to be one of the keys to happiness...or at least to being happier. 

And while it's always appropriate to find the things in our lives to be grateful for, it's of course seasonally appropriate too. 

So, dear Chestists, while we give thanks for you and all you're helping us do, we ask...who and what do you give thanks for? 

Anyone you want to say "thanks" to...even if anonymously?  Anyone you should've said thanks to a long time ago but for some reason didn't?

Go on, share it, and feel more better.

Oh, and of course, happy, happy Thanksgiving form all of us her @ OOC HQ.

Love & SexChemistry

comment | November 10th, 2011


(This story originally appeared on Clarisse Thorn: Pro-Sex Outreach, Open-Minded Feminism.)

It's a long story and a short one, but I guess all of them are.

I'm 27. It's about that age: A lot of my compatriots are getting married lately -- most monogamously, some to a primary polyamorous partner. I myself have a stack of relationships in my past. Some were monogamous, some polyamorous. Some have been on-and-off, some short-term, some long-term (5 or 6 years was the longest). Lately I've been processing some tough questions about polyamory, but I'd like to stick with it.

And I've been thinking a lot about what I want in a primary polyamorous partner. The kind of guy I could marry. I wonder if I'll ever get to that point. I wonder if I'd know him if I saw him.  

* *

I met Mr. Ambition at one of the aforementioned weddings. Several people recommended that I talk to him, and we liked each other right away. Mutual friends used words like "zealot" to describe him; let's just say he's got an intense history of dedicated activism. Charisma, integrity, and ...

#bodiesThe Vagina is Becoming Big Business

5 comments | November 10th, 2011

no one would know

This article's a bit old, a month or so, but we've been busy.  It's so good, we're just reprinting it here.  You can find the original here.

By MAE ANDERSON, AP Retail Writer

NEW YORK (AP) — Celebrities are gabbing about it openly. A growing number of grooming products cater to it. And a recent TV commercial hails it as "the cradle of life" and "the center of civilization."

The vagina is becoming big business.

A generation that grew up with more graphic language and sexual images in the media is forgoing the decades-old practice of tiptoeing around female genitalia in favor of more open dialogue about it. To reach digital-age 20- and 30-somethings, who also have shortened attention spans, marketers are using ads that are edgier, more frank and sometimes downright shocking.

"Gen Y people are more relaxed about their bodies, so there's more attention to products that people would have been embarrassed to talk about before," says Deborah Mitchell, executive director for the Center for Brand and Product Management at the University of Wisconsin School of Business. "It's part of this trend of women saying, 'Hey, we're not ...

Happy MakingProfessional Difficulties, Overcome.

7 comments | November 8th, 2011


(story submitted by Goshawk, a 25 yo Chestist)

Work can sometimes be, well, work.  Whether it's office politics, finding the time to be great at what you do and still have a life, or dealing with career  challenges, it ain't always a bowl of cherries in and around the office.  Here's one reader's story:

I just worked through a really difficult time professionally - I failed a professional test. In my line of work, you only get to do that once before you're standing in front of a review board deciding if you're worth keeping.

As you can imagine, the upcoming training and re-test ate my life, and every day I seemed to have less and less confidence in my abilities. It was awful. I doubted my work ethic, my competence, my capabilities. I cried myself to sleep - I love this job and I can't think of anything I'd rather do with my life. The idea of failure was crushing, yet every day felt like it brought me closer to that finish.

But when it came to the re-test, as soon as I sat down to begin...I ...

Love & SexBeing Single

5 comments | November 7th, 2011

roy chestist

(story submitted anonymously, by a Chestist)

My 10th (ya read that right, TENTH) year of being single is fast approaching and it has really started me thinking.

(back up) When I say single, I mean completely (no dates, no boyfriends, no one nighters, no sleep overs) single. Got me thinking, is being single the rest of my life, honestly what I want anymore? Believe me, being single and staying single was absolutely a choice I made, and with a clear mind and an unwounded heart. I have had good and bad, short and long relationships and only one abusive relationship... It only took one pushing, shoving, slapping, foul-mouthed fight in a relationship for me to know, with everything in me, that I would NEVER allow that to happen again.

See, once I actually make up mind, 100%, with what I want or don't want, then it is on like Donkey Kong! I can do it and stick to it without a snag. It is the actual making up my mind completely that snags me every time.

I can still remember my first real crush, well kinda remember. I do know ...