20 Ways to be Happy

The New York Magazine has a list of 20 ways to be happy.   Here are some excerpts:

Decide where to go to college by picking two decent schools and flipping a coin.  […] Those who seize the first option that meets
their standards (which don’t have to be low, just defined) are happier
than those who insist on finding the perfect solution.

So Dad’s way of shopping was best – he always made us buy the first item that fit.  (So the strategy was to say that nothing fit until you found the one you liked.)

Don’t go to law school.
Lawyers are 3.6 times more likely to be depressed than members of other
professions, and it’s not just because their jobs are more stressful.
For most people, job stress has little effect on happiness unless it is
accompanied by a lack of control (lawyers, of course, have clients to
listen to) or involves taking something away from somebody else (a
common feature of the legal system).

I know lots of people with law degrees that aren’t lawyers, probably because being a lawyer doesn’t make people happy.  People don’t like lawyers either, which probably adds to the unhappiness.

If someone tells you he’s still pining for his ex, ask the ex out.

If somebody else liked him, you are likely to too.

If you can’t decide what TV to buy, walk across the hall and ask your neighbor if he likes his.
[…] Turns out, people are happier following

This is how I bought my new phone and I really like it.  Usually I research all the options forever, don’t really like any one of them and then pick one.  This time I asked the t-mobile rep what he would buy if "small" was the most important criteria.  And I like it.

But don’t work overtime . . .
[…] lottery winners and Forbes 100 members are no more likely to be satisfied than anyone else.

Just make sure you live next to people that make less than you do.  Even if you only make $30K a year, you’ll be happier than if you made $100K and lived next to people that made $150K.

They also said married people are happier and kids don’t make you any happier than you were.  I disagree with the kids one because I think families and communities make people happy.

Photo by 油姬.