Keeping the “Happy” in Happy New Year


You get off the metro, walk into the office, or go into Starbuck’s, and everyone is saying it: Happy New Year! We all are walking around for the first week or two with a glow, fresh from extended holidays, time off, stuffed with good food, and anxious to fulfill our resolutions and achieve our goals for the year.

But before you know it, the little stuff can get to us, dampening that happy feeling that comes with a new year: the line at Starbuck’s is too long or they screw up your order, the metro is delayed, and your to-do list at work is already overwhelming.

So how do we keep the “happy” throughout the year, long past the requisite greetings that come with the first week of January?

A coworker and I had lunch today, and we were commenting on another colleague who always seemed happy and positive, always with a smile on his face, just a good guy. What do you know, but an hour later, when I stop by his cube, he tells me that his goals for 2011 are the three P’s: Positive, Proactive, and Patient.


I knew that this guy was going to be a lot happier this year and more fulfilled than many others who make resolutions based on material things, events, weight loss, and so forth. Now, I’m knocking these types of goals and checklists, because I have a few things like that I’m aiming for too, but I really think that setting your year around basic human traits is a win all around – especially because it can be applied to almost EVERYTHING you do.

Just think: when the metro is delayed, you gotta be patient. When your task list is a mile long, be proactive about getting it done. When your drink order is messed up, be positive and take it anyway to give to a homeless person on the street.

Here are some other goals that I like for 2011:

  • Passionate
  • Motivated
  • Loyal
  • Flexible

What are yours?


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