What’s the quickest way to feel happy?

Make someone else happy!

It’s really pretty easy.  And it’s something you can do without spending any money.  All you really need is a target – a person, a child, a dog, a cat, a plant, you-name-it.   Your target can even be a complete stranger.

The easiest way to make someone happy – is to share a smile.  If you’re walking down the street, or jogging in the park, you will pass a lot of people.  Try making eye contact and smiling at some of them as you go by; maybe even say “good morning.”  You’ll notice that while a few people won’t bother to look at you or acknowledge your presence – that many people will instantly return your smile!  You just made someone happy!  Even if it was just for a moment, you made someone happy.  It’s that easy.

If you have a family member or friend that you haven’t seen or talked to for a long time, give them a call out of the blue. When they answer,  tell them that you were just thinking about them and decided to say hello and catch up.  If the call goes to voicemail, just leave a similar message.  They will be so happy to hear your voice and know that you were thinking about them – and that they matter to you.

If you live or work with other people whom you see ever day, think about what you might easily do for someone that would make them feel happy.  Often, it’s as simple as making someone feel acknowledged, heard, and apprecriated.  And just as often, it’s the people who we see and interact with every day – that we forget to acknowledge, listen to and appreciate for the good things that they bring to the table.

A lot of us take other people for granted – people we see every day at home or at work.  Maybe even your spouse or your parent, or a child.  It is especially important to take a few minutes each day – to try to make someone happy whom you see every day.   If it’s a spouse, parent or child, it might be as simple as giving them a greeting and a kiss on the lips, cheek or forehead. Ask them a good question and really listen to their response.  Touch them on their hand, arm or shoulder when you ask a question.  All of these things willl help them feel that you are actually interested in what they have to say.  That will make them happy.  And that will make you happy.

Even people we sometimes disagree with – provide us with an opportunity to examine our own beliefs and figure out if something else might make better sense.  So we can genuinely thank people for their opposing viewpoints and they will feel good, and you can feel good, and maybe one of these days you will also agree about something else.

Pet a dog or a cat.  Watch the dog wag it’s tail.  Hear the cat purr.   You made them happy.

Water a plant.  Know that you are giving the plant something it absolutely needs to remain healthy and alive and fulfill its purpose.  It may take some imagination to see – but you just made that plant happy.   You did good for another living being.  And it was really easy.

And the most wonderful thing about intentionally making someone else happy – is that it makes you happy, too!  Every time.  Just smiling at someone and getting a smile in return – is a great feeling.  Forget about anyone who ignores your gesture – they are probably caught up in their own thoughts and unable to accept your momentary gift.   But those who are open and receptive – will appreciate your smile.   It might even be a moment that has the power to turn their whole day around in a more positive direction.

By doing the most simple things – like smiling – to make someone else happy – you have nothing to lose and everything to gain.   This is so easy to do, you can do it once a day or multiple times each day.  But it’s best to start by making a conscious effort to make at least one person happy – every day.

The late, great entertainer and movie star, Jimmy Durante, famously sang the hit song, “Make Someone Happy”, and you can listen to the song and read the lyrics at the bottom of this post.   The best line from this song is : “Make someone happy, make just one someone happy, and you will be happy too.”  This song is less than 2 minutes and will put a smile on your face. PTD (See below)

“Make Someone Happy” Lyrics

Make someone happy,
Make just one someone happy.
Make just one heart the heart you sing to.

One smile that cheers you,
One face that lights when it nears you.
One gal you’re everything to.

Fame, if you win it,
Comes and goes in a minute.
Where’s the real stuff in life to cling to?

Love is the answer,
Someone to love is the answer.
Once you’ve found her,
Build your world around her.

Make someone happy.
Make just one someone happy
And you will be happy too.

Words: Adolph Green and Betty Comden
Music: Jule Styne