Love and happiness are a choice. Jackson Bliss explores 10 more ways to have more of both
11. Play Often
Whether you have kids or whether you husband is a child, sometimes you need to stop being so damn serious. So tackle your wife on the bed, tell stupid jokes that don’t have a punchline, play make-believe with your kids, shoot hoops in your pajamas, buy Legos for your girlfriend, send your parents a ridiculous text message, tickle your boyfriend in his sleep, play video games in co-op mode on your Xbox. When you’re with your boo, you can let the world die for a few hours.
12. Change your Default Settings
Misanthropes are talented at finding things to hate (on) because detestable things “prove” they’re right. Optimists are talented at finding things to give them hope for the future because positive outcomes “prove” they’re right. For the record, everyone thinks they’re a realist but few people actually are. You’re entitled to your own paradigm, but whatever you choose, it should make you happy. Otherwise, what’s the fucking point?
13. Hot Chocolate, a Warm Blanket and a Good Flick: Enough Said
14. (Re)ignite your Friendship with Your Wife/Husband/Partner Extraordinaire
Hopefully, s/he’s one of your best friends. You should want to come to her when you’re down and out on the world, when bad luck is a conspiracy. Because you respect her, because you love her, because you value her intelligence, her compassion and her strength, you naturally seek out her company. After all, your partner is supposed to be your partner in crime. If you wouldn’t heist a bank with her, your friendship is suspect because clearly you have no loyalty!
15. Perform a Simple Gesture of Love Every Week
It could be as simple as cutting out a paper heart, making out in the car, bringing home a book your boyfriend was talking about to a friend, or just stopping your wife in the middle of dinner and saying: wait! When she gives you a strange look, put down your silverware, walk over to her and give her a big fat hug. When she asks what the hug was for, say: just because. It’s a simple and perfect demonstration of love that takes like ten seconds. Also, cf. tackling your wife in the bed.
16. Perform a Grandiose Gesture of Love Every Year
Spend an hour or two expressing your love in a tiny work of “art.” Even if you have absolutely no talent, write her a heinous love ballad and then make a cheesy, badly edited music video before posting it on her Facebook wall. Organize a treasure hunt for her birthday. Write out a ridiculous love poem and when s/he walks through the door, perform your masterpiece like a slam poet, mic and all. Buy a stuffed animal, make a tiny sign expressing your love, attach sign to stuffed animal, then stick stuffed animal inside a cabinet with two courtside Bulls tickets (or gift certificates for a couples massage and facial). If you’re feeling really ambitious, organize a Bollywood flash mob, just for her. Like the awesome fat kid in class, your love needs lots of cake to keep the big love going.
17. Open Yourself to Love (x2)
Love deeply and often. Fall in love with a perfect moment. Fall in love all over again with your shorty. Even when you get your heart broken, celebrate your pain, vulnerability, openness and courage to love irrationally. Spend the day holding her/his hand like a first crush. Say I love you every fucking day of your life. Cuddle like a gangster in love. Also, cf. Hot Chocolate, a Warm Blanket and a Good Flick.
18. Go to a Farmer’s Market
Reconnect with nature, small businesses and community. Touch, taste and smell local produce. Buy fresh bread and local delicacies. Form connections with local farmers, neighbors and artisans. Buy a box of blackberries and then eat them with your husband/wife for a snack. Once your faces are both stained, make out in front of the window. Then take a bath together.
19. Go on Dates Every Week
There’s a thing called a babysitter and another thing called a phone, so if there’s a kid emergency, you’ll be the first to know. Otherwise, it’s time for a romantic dinner for two. Just be together. Just talk and connect. Maybe if you’re lucky, there’ll be a mariachi band blasting love songs until your ears start to ring. Cf. Drinking 10 shots of tequila.
20. Find Silence
Set aside time every week for walking without a destination, either alone or with company. Listen to the birds singing scales in the treetops, the soft hush of snowflakes falling on your face and kids playing in the neighborhood. If you’re with someone, enjoy a comfortable silence together. If you’re alone, walk in circles in the snow. The best way to remember where you are is to stop doing everything.
NB: If you actually robbed your local Bank of America in a bold declaration of friendship with your significant other (cf. Partner in Crime and Reigniting Your Friendship), you should probably run like hell, not walk. You’re probably gonna spend a long time in jail wearing matching orange jumpers, but at least you’ll be together in the back of the patrol car for a couple minutes. And if you love her with everything you’ve got, you’ll count the days until you can do it all over again.
image credit: Flickr/AdamCohn
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