Tag Archive for: Happy


I am not too certain what it is about missionaries, but they are always smiling!
Being with them yesterday, reminded me of an experiment I conducted some years ago.
It was to ๐’”๐’Ž๐’Š๐’๐’† ๐’‚๐’• ๐’†๐’—๐’†๐’“๐’š๐’๐’๐’†!
When at home back then, I walked our dog (Fawn) early one afternoon in the “Glen” in Dunfermline.
A perfect time to experiment!
Setting off, school kids were at lunch – they gave me some unusual looks in response.
I bumped into an old friend I hadn’t seen in over 30 years. We talked, laughed and shared many memories.
Next, I met a young family feeding the squirrels, we smiled and they commented about the beauty of the Glen and we struck up a lovely conversation.

Ball throwing time.

Fawn was delighted!
Other dog owners joined in.
Further conversation ensued!
Next – tourists from Gent, Belgium. I practised my Dutch – it was great! We talked and smiled at our language skills.
Finally, nearing home again as I smiled, I received a smile or a cheerful comment in return.
In fact, with the exception of the school kids, everyone I made eye contact with, when I smiled at them, they smiled back or shared a positive greeting.
The results were astonishing!
I was happier, more relaxed, more positive and somehow more approachable.
I loved the walk.
I realised the great power of a smile.
Wearing a SMILE everyday brightens someone’s day.
โ€œGo forward in life with a smile on your face, a sparkle in your eyes, and with great and strong purpose in your heart. The best things in life are the people in your life, the moments we live, and memories we made along the way.โ€ Gordon B. Hinckley
As a child growing up in church, I learned this little song:
โ€œIf you chance to meet a frown, do not let it stay.
Quickly turn it upside down and smile that frown away.
No one likes a frowning face. Change it for a smile.
Make the world a better place by smiling all the while.โ€
Why not conduct your own experiment today and pass on your smile!

Too much to do?

Are you pushing yourself too hard?
Personally, Iโ€™m the kind of person that likes being busy, at least most of the time.
If you are not careful enough though, the side effects of the daily routines can include – physical aches and pains, difficulty sleeping, missing meals, abandoning exercise, headaches, stomach problems, forgetting things, feeling overwhelmed, feeling guilty, isolating yourself, irritability, anxiety and even depression can all kick in.
Have you noticed any new aches and pains recently?
Maybe you should listen to your body more often?
Yes, we all need to kick into a higher gear occasionally to get things done, but we need to put things into perspective, by taking care of ourselves and our relationships.
The way to succeed is not to work long hours, but to work hard in each hour.
And take short breaks – regularly!
Remember โ€“ life is short!
It is important to take time every day for yourself and to slow down, to enjoy the beauty you can find all around.
Open your eyes and see.
Perhaps it is time for you to re-connect with your core purpose and watch how your behaviours will shift along the way.
What can you do to slow down today?

Is it for real?

๐ƒ๐จ ๐ญ๐ก๐ž๐ฒ ๐ฌ๐ฆ๐ข๐ฅ๐ž ๐›๐š๐œ๐ค ๐š๐ญ ๐ฒ๐จ๐ฎ?
100 missionaries.
2 days of multi-zone conferences in Antwerp and Utrecht.
Inspiration galore.
Remarkable experiences.
Real joy.
Each afternoon, role play, after role play, after role play, after role play, with 4 different scenarios to consider.
The cheering each other on, the laughter, the glee and camaraderie was a joy to behold.
It had been a while since Iโ€™d been so involved, but once I dived in, I loved it!
So why spend so much time in role plays?
– It develops communication and language skills
– It creates opportunities to explore, scrutinize and experiment
– It allows everyone to act and make sense of real-life scenarios.
– It encourages creativity and imagination
– It motivates and engages everyone
– It inspires greater confidence
– It advances listening skills
– It promotes in the moment creative problem solving.
– It builds empathy by experiencing new perspectives
– It provides opportunities for feedback through critical observation from peers.
And above all โ€“ many new friendships were formed.
Yes – roleplay is more than just make believe.
Creating a safe space to explore scenarios together was a wonderful experience.
My personal learning takeaway was – through acting out a variety of situations, role-playing teaches that we can be ๐š๐ง๐ฒ๐ญ๐ก๐ข๐ง๐  ๐ฐ๐ž ๐œ๐ก๐จ๐จ๐ฌ๐ž ๐ญ๐จ ๐›๐ž.
Yes, they always smile back at you!
Do you?

Cullen Skink

โ€œPresident, you look a little tired, you should take a 10-minute nap!โ€
She was right.
These last few days, with the really hot days and sticky nights, I hadnโ€™t slept too well.
And yesterday, it really started to catch up with me.
Arriving home from the office around 4.30pm, I lay down on the bed and didnโ€™t take just 10 minutes but enjoyed nearly a full hour.
It was bliss.
Walking downstairs and into the living room, Monic said…โ€œFeeling better, are you ready to eat now?โ€
A few moments later, a hearty bowl of Cullen Skink soup was served up for dinner.
Monic loves to make it. And we love to eat it!
Cullen Skink is a traditional Scottish soup made of fish (traditionally smoked haddock), potatoes, onions/leek and cream.
It was absolutely delicious.
The nap rebooted my brain!
The soup rebooted my body!
Refreshed, Recharged, Revitalized and Ready to go โ€“ the evening turned out to be a breeze.
What happens when you take a nap?

A little wink

Do they smile back at you?
Last weekend, Monic and I were visiting Brussels.
We had the opportunity to speak in church services on Sunday.
Whilst Monic was speaking, I noticed a little boy, around 6 years old, looking directly at me.
In that split second, I made eye contact with him, tilted my head slightly to one side, smiled, and gave him a friendly little wink.
He smiled back and tried a little wink too.
For a brief moment in time โ€“ we enjoyed our little connection and smiled together.
It was an innocent thing.
In that instant, a thought entered my mind when I was his age.
Immediately, in my thoughts, I dismissed my well-rehearsed, prepared talk, already provided to the translators in advance and shortly thereafter apologised to them.
As I stood up, I shared the impressions of my heart and mind.
Slowly, I told my simple story.
Look out for little impressions and ideas, if you are listening, they always come.
The power of a little wink.
Be careful how you use it though, you just never know who may smile back at you!

Be there!

๐๐ž ๐ญ๐ก๐ž๐ซ๐ž!
Whilst on a video call last night with our three grown children, my mind drifted back to when they were all much smaller.
In my minds eye, I was holding hands with our youngest daughter, walking through our beautiful park in town.
It felt like only yesterday, but 10 years have swiftly passed by.
Those tender moments are one of the sweetest, most enjoyable parts of life.
Suddenly โ€“ growing older, there can come a sense of having been there – and yet knowingly perhaps, I should have enjoyed the journey much, much more.
Iโ€™m sure those old like me, or older even โ€“ will understand my sentiment.
Life is going on all of the time.
Sometimes we are so focused on the next big thing, that we miss much of the beautiful scenery along the way.
Time with loved ones, the holidays, the picnics, the walks, the challenges are all part of ๐›๐ž๐ข๐ง๐  ๐ญ๐ก๐ž๐ซ๐ž.
There is purpose and meaning to all that we experience and undergo in this life.
We should enjoy our children when we have them around us, as I know now, they wonโ€™t always be with us.
Back then when they were young, they not only needed us, they also wanted us too!
We live through each part of our life only once, we donโ€™t go back, so it is vitally important that we ๐’ƒ๐’† ๐’•๐’‰๐’†๐’“๐’†!
There are few sweeter memories than your childโ€™s hand in yours, walking with you.
Wherever you are, ๐›๐ž ๐ญ๐ก๐ž๐ซ๐ž, be present and enjoy the moment, our life after all, is only a nanosecond of time.
How can you focus better, be present and be engaged in the here and now?

I’ll be happy when….

I often hear people sayโ€ฆ.
“I’ll be happy when….(fill in the blank)”
“I’ll be happy when we move home.”
“I’ll be happy when I get the new job.”
“I’ll be happy when the summer comes.”
“I’ll be happy when I graduate.”
“I’ll be happy when so and so leaves.”
“I’ll be happy when I get the new car.”
“I’ll be happy when we finally pay off the mortgage.”
โ€œWhen I retire.โ€
But of course, when we finally reach the appointed milestone, something else just takes its place.
And so our entire life can pass away.
President Russell M. Nelson taught, โ€œThe joy we feel has little to do with the circumstances of our lives and everything to do with the focus of our lives.โ€
Some people are constantly changing their circumstances and their focus in their quest for happiness.
The wise learn that happiness comes through finding contentment in the things that they simply love to do.
Elder Jeffrey R Holland says โ€œHappiness is not easy to find running straight for it. It is usually too elusive, too ephemeral, too subtle. If you havenโ€™t learned it already, you will learn in the years ahead that most times happiness comes to us when we least expect it, when we are busy doing something else. Happiness is almost always a by-product of some other endeavour.โ€
Stop and make a change.
Decide that you will be happy NOW!
Donโ€™t miss out on the joys and the happiness you have right now โ€“ enjoy the present!
What is your reason to be happy now? ๐Ÿ˜Š