The Health Benefits of Happy Memories

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Summer is the time for making memories. A quick scan of Instagram and Facebook reveals the photo highlights from friends’ and family’s summers: seaside smiles, mountain climbing, posing pets, berry pies and barbecues, lazy afternoons, campfires and sunsets. On a recent staycation, our family scheduled an event each day to get us out of the house and share a fun experience, even if it was simple. We planned an outing at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, an afternoon at our local farmer’s market, Continue Reading

Piercing the Darkness of Tragedy with the Light of Joy

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In the face of the tragic events we’ve seen lately, the question naturally arises: Is it possible to feel normal again, and if so, is it possible to feel joy again? In the midst of grief or sadness, happiness can seem elusive and it can be accompanied by feelings of guilt. Yet life without joy loses its meaning. The saying “laughter is the best medicine” actually goes thousands of years back to scripture, where Proverbs records, “A joyful heart is good medicine.” Practices like laughter Continue Reading

Independence, Joy, and a Spiritual Take on Pixar’s “Inside Out”

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The new Pixar movie, “Inside Out” has been described by critics as the animation studio’s best since their 1995 blockbuster success, “Toy Story.” This latest film brings to life a rare inside view of the emotional conflicts within a pre-teen’s mind. The main character, Riley, is transplanted with her family from their home in Minnesota to San Francisco. At first, “Joy” is the paramount emotion in Riley’s head, squashing out anger, frustration, fear, disgust, and sadness. But soon these other Continue Reading

Your Happiness Depends On This

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You can also read this blog on Huffington Post here. Is happiness preventive medicine? That probably depends on how you define it. If you think of it as fleeting and resulting from factors outside of yourself, like a new job or a Hawaiian vacation, well then it's probably not so beneficial. But if you see it as inherently within you--something you give, rather than get--then it's a different story. This might sound like a tall order or even blue-eyed optimism. But what if behind this attitude Continue Reading

How does Easter Relate to Longevity?

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You can also read this post on my weekly syndicated blog, "Health Conscious" on MetroWest Daily News. Easter weekend is a time of reflection, including both sorrow and joy for many Christians. But there's a silver lining in the life story of Jesus. Easter can serve as a reminder not just of his death, but the health-giving, life-promising effect of practicing the scriptural truths he taught and lived. Whether or not you're a religious person, if you're health-conscious, you probably Continue Reading

Are Happiness and Health Linked?

Note to readers: You can also read this post on my weekly syndicated blog, "Health Conscious" on MetroWest Daily News. In case you missed it, the United Nations just named the world's first International Day of Happiness on Wednesday, March 20th. Some people celebrated in a big way. Like the free-hugs flash mob in Washington D.C. and Twitter followers who connected using the hashtag: #HappyDay. Yet another "day" you say? The UN website explains, "When we contribute to the common good, we Continue Reading

A Fireside Chat About Your True Self

Today’s guest blog is written by Kim Shippey, an avid reader and devoted husband, father, and grandfather. He is a full-time writer and editor with the Christian Science Sentinel, a weekly print and online publication. Apart from my daily prayer practice, which includes studying the Bible and Science and Health with Key to the Scriptures by Mary Baker Eddy, no book I’ve read in recent weeks has given me a stronger sense of spiritual and physical well-being--of identity, belonging, direction, Continue Reading

Make Gratitude a Daily Habit

With friends and family coming together to celebrate Thanksgiving this week, it's the perfect time to think more deeply about gratitude and how our daily practice of thankfulness impacts our own and others' well being. I've noticed my Facebook news feed is full of friends posting their gratitude thoughts. One quote caught my attention: "Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It Continue Reading

Life Lessons from Near Death Experiences

The following guest blog is written by my friend Steve Graham. Much of his career as an editor has been centered on spiritual reporting. He writes from his home in Natick, MA. For a long time, I've been interested in so-called near death experiences (NDEs). I've read Dr. Raymond Moody's well-known book "Life After Life," which reports the results of over 100 case studies on people who were revived after having been pronounced clinically dead. The amazing consistency in what those people Continue Reading

Today’s To-Do: #1 Be Happy

Today's News & Culture update: 1. Practicing forgiveness, gratitude, and daily prayer go a long way toward promoting your health, not to mention someone else's well-being. Check out 8 Ways to Be Happier. 2. If you're thinking about the young people in your life, gratitude among teens (surprise!) also translates into more happiness: Gratitude in Teens Linked with being Happier 3. Letting go of resentment and anger might be a first step in expressing more happiness in your day. The up side Continue Reading