Decide Daily to Have Happiness

“Our daily decisions and habits have a huge impact upon both our levels of happiness and success.” Shawn Achor


One of my resources for all things happy, Shawn Achor, studies happiness in a real and scientific way. As a human city-slicker, adventurer and admirer of people, I study happiness on the streets of my city, on public transportation, and on social media. I love to watch people interact, live and work. I grimace when people board a city bus with no eye contact or salutation to the driver. We order meals, buy petrol and travel with no greetings to our order-takers, service people or flight attendants. That’s why I believe we should implement the “10-5 rule” which is smile when you’re within 10 feet of someone and say “hello” when we are within 5 feet of them. We are socialized to reciprocate, so imagine the ripple effect of that happiness!


My friend, Renita, works hard at her career. She shares her projects on social media and makes public requests. I like to share her work, experiences and requests. She texted me, “Thank you, Denise. You are always so supportive.”

We must edify and endorse our friends, fellow parents, and visionaries.

When my friend Loretta walks for three days to raise money for the Susan G. Komen for the Cure, I always share and support her efforts. What a lovely and selfless feat she achieves. I believe that happiness, generosity and love spread. When my friend, Beth gifted me the book, “It’s Not About You” by my friend Bob Burg, I wrote to Bob sharing my delight about this gift. His two sentence reply made me smile.


We are all infinitely capable of being our best self. Our only purpose on this Earth is to live our best lives, and leave a legacy for our future selves.


When you choose happiness from within, you are able to conquer any obstacle that comes your way. Be creative! When your plans change or something comes in your way, just find another way.


The yoga classes I used to attend were great and inspiring. They ended when the teacher repatriated. I started teaching yoga classes on the beach and saw great progress and success. Then the beach closed for a public function. I found another place to do yoga. I have so much happiness unrolling my mat wherever I can – the poses are the same; the view is all that changes.

The happiness comes from within, from deep breaths, from friendship and from the light within. The point is NEVER GIVE UP.


As naturalist and author John Muir said, “The sun shines not on us, but in us.” In this crazy world, filled with a fascinating variety of people, find the sun within you…choose happiness and let your best self shine.


I see this in the many people walking the streets of my neighborhood. Where they go is uncertain to me, but they are always moving. People-watching is enlightening: everyone has a story.


When I engage the 10-5 rule, I enter their world for a split second. A smile is easy, free and could change someone’s day. Positive energy lifts everyone up. You can change the mood of the world!


I write a blog that’s been published world-wide since 2011 called, which offers “life lessons,” reflections and inspirations on happiness. I used to live on another island, Oahu, and I practiced Bikram Yoga, surfed, went scuba diving, enjoyed outings with my family and friends. Upon moving to Abu Dhabi, the blog continues with new “life lessons” and joys: kite surfing, yoga on the beach, a roof and a living room, and pasta nights. The faces and places are different and the same. Everyone has a story and everyone appreciates a smile.


You can train your brain to be positive and find the good in everything.

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