Practice Feeling Good – For No Reason!

No matter what I’m spending my time doing, I have learned through many, many choices that I also have a choice about how I’m feeling while I do whatever I’m doing. Years ago an inspiring teacher changed my life with a sentence. Maybe it will do the same for you. He said:

“I need no excuse to experience and express pure joy.” – Paul Solomon

It is helpful to practice. To actually practice feeling good – for no reason. It’s not difficult. All you have to do is smile. That’s it. Go ahead. Put a smile on your face, and hold it for 60 seconds – SIXTY WHOLE SECONDS – and try feeling bad. Can’t do it. It’s very hard to smile and feel bad at the same time. Try it!

Think about times when you were happy, when you did feel joy. And notice that just thinking about such times, causes you to begin to feel the way you did then. (Feel a little smile curling up the corners of your mouth?) The more detailed the imagery of your memory, the more imaginary senses you involve, the more intense the emotion (positive or negative by the way).

So, practice feeling good for no reason, and when you find yourself not having a reason, remember – you don’t need one!

At least that’s my story, and I’m sticking to it.

Dr. Rob Pennington, psychologist and professional speaker is author of Find The Upside Of The Down Times: How To Turn Your Worst Experiences Into Your Best Opportunities. You can get more information about having Dr. Pennington speak to your organization by going to his bio at: or catch more of his entertaining insights on this topic and others from his blog at


The Pharmacist is Clowning Around

I would like to introduce you to Fang Li Yun, a 52-year-old Malaysian pharmacist of 24 years.  She is part of what they call the “Funny Action” project, which helps people learn to laugh and to smile even when there is no good news to smile about.

Like so many other people, Fang Li Yun thought happiness would follow her income, and as a pharmacist she was making good money.

But in 2006 she discovered clowning and discovered there was more happiness to be achieved.  This lead to a mission or pilgrimage of sorts with Hunter Doherty “Patch Adams” and a group of thirty other people from various countries to Mexico last year.  Together they visited patients, the homeless, the elderly, shut-ins and  HIV-infected people while dressed in their best clown attire

What made the biggest difference? In 2008, a friend of hers who was president of a breast cancer  support group, asked her this question: “The happiness a clown brings to people is only momentary. How are you going to make the happiness last?”

Now she teaches people how to laugh: “Everyone is born with the ability to laugh. Laughter is the best medicine and an effective way of fighting illnesses. Based on statistics, babies can laugh up to 400-500 times a day, while adults laugh an average of only 14 to 15 times a day.”

Fringe benefits of clowning around include increased self-confidence and reduced stress. Fang Li Yun discovered that whenever she focuses on making other people happy, she also experiences a surge of joy and forgets all her worries and cares.

And she is still a pharmacist.

This post was included in the That Girl Is Funny Blog Carnival.