Bonnie Bing: Let’s try to make every day a Day of Happiness

Who decides such things as National Donut Day, National Dress Day, International Women’s Day or Sibling Day? Usually most people don’t give a hoot, but there’s a day coming up that deserves our attention.

March 20 is International Day of Happiness. Well, all right, now we’re talking. This is a day we can all relate to. And this is a day when we should make up our minds to be happy.

Yes, it is on a Monday, and sunshine would be a plus, but who knows it might be pouring rain. Remember this is Kansas, so it could be sleeting.

Crappy weather, ha! We’re going to be happy on that day. Period.

During my extensive research on the subject, (ha! again) I read that WalletHub, a personal finance website that measures about everything you can think of, did a recent study measuring how content people are with their lives. They gathered data in more than 180 cities across the United States including such subjects as depression, growth of income, length of commute to work and average leisure time spent per day.

Where do you think Wichita came in? The top 10? The top 20? I was sure Wichita, America, would rank right up there with the No. 1 happiest city, Fremont, Calif.

No, dear Wichitans, we came in at number 131.

Well, let’s not worry about that. Happiness starts with each and every person and we’re one group of happy, helpful people. Yes, these days we have plenty of reasons to be unhappy, but looking at the news, it’s clear that compared to many people in the world today we’ve got a lot to be happy about.

Maybe on the International Day of Happiness we should decide on three things that make us happy. It doesn’t have to be the top three things, just three things. If you can’t think of three things that bring a bit of joy, you’ve got some happiness work to do, my friend.

Seeing someone laugh until they cry makes me so happy, even if I don’t know what they’re laughing about. But laughter isn’t the measure of sustained happiness. Wouldn’t you say contentment is a better way to view the happiness you have in your life?

If you’re not content, at some point you’ll say to yourself, or others, “I’m NOT happy.” I’ve said it before and if you’re older than 3 years old, you’ve probably said it too. That’s when we have to remind ourselves that we can’t depend on other people to make us happy, we have to whip up that happiness on our own.

Once that smile is back, think of what my mom always said, “If you’re happy most of the time, appreciate it!”

Too many times we count our troubles and think of how much stress is in our lives. Instead we should make it a practice to count the joys in our lives.

Groucho Marx was a funny fellow, but he was quoted as saying something very philosophical: “I, not events, have the power to make me happy or unhappy today. I can choose which it shall be. Yesterday is dead, tomorrow hasn’t arrived yet. I have just one day, today, and I’m going to be happy in it.”

International Day of Happiness happens once a year, but we’re blessed if we have moments of true happiness every day. Dwell on those moments.

Now get out there and be happy.

Reach Bonnie Bing at