Life is short: Fill it up with things you love.

Happiness is ...
Happiness is …

When we were in Hawaii, my travel buddy had a huge smile on her face every time we were in the water or at the beach. It was clear to her and the rest of us that she thrives and is happiest in that place. Don’t get me wrong, I loved Hawaii, too, but I didn’t have the same intense reaction.

It made me wonder where I’m happiest and how I can get more of that in my life. It helps that I’ve had a couple career coaching sessions. Caley has stopped me to tell me when she hears a change in my voice. She can tell when I’m excited about a possibility and when I’m falling into the “should” zone.

Here are a few things I’ve realized make my life happier.

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  1. Sporting events. I had so much fun being part of the team at a recent Brooklyn Nets game. I kept the “Brooooklynnnnnn!” cheer going after we left Barclays Center.
  2. Collaborating. My work buddy is a great writing partner. We both do our own work and have our own assignments, but when one of us gets stuck or has an idea that’s almost there, but needs some work, we turn to each other. We nail it every time. I wish I could work with Raegan forever.
  3. Brand writing. I love the challenge of creating an image for a company without it being straight advertising. I totally rock at this. It’s a nice combination of all the things I love: journalism, self-awareness, psychology and strategy.
  4. Workouts. I feel like a grumpapotamus when I don’t get to the gym regularly. This has been a busy week, so I made it to yoga on Monday, then no workouts until a Saturday afternoon high-intensity interval training session. I was not feeling like the best Candace I can be from Tuesday to Friday.
  5. Veggie- and protein-based diet. I’ve felt better since I stopped trying to be OK with gluten replacements (like rice tortillas and chickpea bread). Rice tortillas have a weird sticky texture. The bread has no flavor. Life has been better since I accepted that my meals are now veggie- and protein-based. When I cheat with a beer or pizza, I go for the real thing. I also discovered a gluten-free bakery near me. Her baked goods are made fresh and taste much better than the freezer aisle substitutes.

I’m issuing a challenge: Pay attention to your voice (or attitude) changes from psyched to should. I’d love to hear what motivates and excites you.

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