How to be Happy!

Today is my dad's birthday! Woohoo!
Unfortunately (for me) or fortunately (for him) he is in Saint Thomas in the middle of the Caribbean islands probably lying on the beach drinking a virgin pina colada...dang so I can't be with him to celebrate...
We have a bomb present for you when you return.
Today I am just getting back to work, going to the dentist (YAY! Yes I am really excited about this), and unpacking and all that fun stuff that you get to do after trips. 

Today, I decided that I would share this post I wrote for Sara from Struggling Happiness (now called Untold Stories of a 20 Something) to give me some time to catch up, plus eventually I will get my blog printed out so all guest posts I'd like to have on my blog as well (later though!).  It was originally posted HERE on September 21, 2011. I recommend checking her blog out HERE!
Hope this post brings some ideas of what you can do to stay happy in all situations!


Hello readers of Struggling Happiness! 
I'm Ashley and I write over at Sloanbook (here)! I'm married to my best friend Kevin and we have a long-haired chihuahua named Katinka (fun name right?)! My husband and I both graduated from Brigham Young University and we just moved to Colorado! I blog about random things that happen to me, vacations and the adventures we go on so it is pretty much a random kind of blog. But in a good way, random :) That is pretty much us. 

Moving on, I am SO honored to have been given the opportunity to guest post and hold down the fort for Sara today! I was so excited when she asked me! I have been following her blog for a long time now and I think she is very sweet and genuine.
She asked me to write on what I do to be happy and inspired so here is what I got for you.

Church uplifts and inspires me as I attend meetings each Sunday. It makes me want to be a better person as I strive to be like Him. It also provides structure in my life as I regularly participate in prayer and scripture study to name a few. If you me mistakes, as we all do, you can always repent and have a clean slate thanks to our Savior and the Atonement. Regardless of what beliefs you may have on religion and a higher being, I think without a doubt it can provide comfort and strength. Church is one of those things for me. I'm a Mormon and if you want to know more about our beliefs you can check out Mormon.org

In addition to church, I think family and friends can bring happiness. As I spend time with family I grow closer to them and build memories to look back on. I think that doing fun things, such as going to play miniature golf or going go-cart riding can bring happiness just as much as doing the little things together like cooking a dinner or cleaning up a room. I also think that girl friends are very important! I enjoy watching reality TV shows, working out at Gold's Gym, shopping, or trying to be crafty with my friends. I just moved to Colorado, away from BYU where I lived the past 5 years, and I can say it is harder to spend time with girl friends when you don't have as many. Honestly, I don't have many here but I will find friends and it really just takes time!

One thing that makes me happy is exercise! The hardest part is just getting into those workout clothes and just starting! But once I start I am glad I made the effort to because exercise is not only good for you to stay in shape but is good because it helps reduce stress and relax muscles. It just makes you feel good afterwards! Honestly, I haven't been the best at working out since I've moved to Colorado (mostly because I lost my gym membership at Gold's Gym in Provo) but I keep trying and that is the most important thing! I play tennis, attempt to run (working on liking or maybe loving running? ha), lift weights, and am kind of getting into P90X. I really love TurboKick or Kickboxing but haven't done much of that since I moved here.

Animals can make people happy! As you can see in the picture above I am holding a long-haired chihuahua! That is Katinka and she is my puppy! I think that spending time with animals can relieve stress and provide happiness. Yeah, it makes sense, but really? Yes, I have known of people having therapy dogs where they can even take them into stores and such and I am not just talking about guide dogs. I have a friend who has a therapy dog because she has PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.) If you are an animal lover and cannot have a pet due to being in a rental or something, think about volunteering at your local humane society! They provide responsibility and can give you a sense of accomplishment when successfully potty training or teaching them a new trick. All in all, animals can make people happy!

I think service is one of the best ways to truly be happy. When you are helping others, in all circumstances, you are focusing on them and not yourself. Whenever I focus on someone else I forget about myself. I forget about a bad day I just had or that I skipped a workout and ate too much that day. I find myself caring about the other person and wanting to help them out. Maybe it is helping someone move, helping at a soup kitchen, or listening to an upset friend who is telling you their problems. I think that service is a great way to lose yourself and then find yourself! I felt very good about myself when I was working at a treatment center for at-risk youth because I was making a positive difference in young girls lives. I recommend making service a part of your life. Find an organization to volunteer at or just help a friend in need.

There are many other things that make me happy but the last one I am going to touch upon is being in nature. I think that everyone should get outside of their house and enjoy the beautiful nature and scenery around them. No matter where you are you can enjoy your surroundings. The world is a beautiful place! You should take a moment to ponder and think. When I have time I like to read books outside under a tree or on a hammock. I like to walk my dog to get the mail or even go on a run with her.

Sorry this is a bit long but there are so many things that can bring happiness into our lives. I have only touched upon a few! 

What makes you happy?

If you feel inclined, I'd love for you to come and stop by my blog here! I love new friends! :)
Have a *HAPPY* day all!


  1. Love this! I agree definitely.

    What makes me happy: Friends, Family, Life, and definitely my dogs.

  2. things that make me happy - my family...friends...the gospel of Jesus Christ...and food...oh yeah, and working out. and good music.

    life is just so good to me. i love it.

  3. Agreed! Church is definitely my #1 too :)


  4. This is such a great post! There's a surprise for you on my blog, by the way ;)

  5. I love this post! :) I agree with all your happy inspirations! :)

  6. I read your blog all the time and I suck at commenting ;) Its a new years resolution to be better- I think your tips are fantastic and practical- thanks for such a lovely blog ashley! we should blog swap postings again soon!

  7. Lovely post! I agree with your happy list! All those things make me happy too :)
    Your dog is soo cute! My parents just had to put down their chihuahua, and seeing the picture makes me think of her... *happy* thoughts though ;)