Jan 8, 2010

Friendly Friday

Shanna Blythe

I’m not sure what to put here—I love to write. I’ve written two books and I’m currently revising the second one so I can submit the heck out of it! I’m plotting out another novel and hope to write it in the summer.

I teach Language Arts at a junior high and like it most days, love it sometimes, and hate it sometimes too! I’m only in my second year teaching, so I still have a lot to learn.

I love to hang out with friends and family, watch movies on our home theater, visit with my writing friends, go to taekwondo, and read. I love to read. And eat chocolate!

I blog sporadically, nothing like C .K., but I’m hoping to become more consistent. I also periodically blog on “Pushing Past the Pounds”. Feel free to visit my blog anytime!

"Finding Happiness"

By Shanna Blythe

We went to San Diego for our Christmas vacation this year and my husband thoroughly enjoyed the warmth—even to go so far as to say, “Let’s quit our jobs, you can find one teaching here, and I’ll just find something. I don’t care what.” I couldn’t help but wonder if this was the start of a mid-life crisis for my husband. I just couldn’t see him giving up his entire career just to move someplace warm.

But the thing is, I don’t think it was a mid-life crisis. Or maybe what we call a mid-life crisis is really something else—the pursuit of happiness. I have often heard other people, and I’m guilty myself, say things like, “If only I had this in my life I’d be happy, if only I could do this thing in my life I’d be happy . . .”

What brings happiness? Is it having things? Having financial security? Religion? Having a loving family? Having a great job that we love? What if we don’t have these things? Can we be happy?

I believe we can, but we have to find things that bring happiness—lasting happiness. And it has to be things we actually have some control over. Most of us can control our thoughts. However, if you have depression you may have to see a doctor and use medicine to help you on this one. Today, I’ve found myself wishing for the weekend. But why can’t I just appreciate the moment I’m in? Even if my students are noisy and rambunctious or not turning in the homework, why can’t I still enjoy that moment? Once it’s gone, it’s gone. I’ll never have it back. Ever. I think one way we can be happy is to live in the moment—to appreciate the moment just as it is.

Serving others is a great way to forget about yourself and find happiness. My husband and I volunteered to go help can food one day and before we left the house, we both groaned and complained about doing it. By the time we were finished we were both in great moods and happy we’d gone.

Some kind of physical exercise or exertion can help. Whenever I go to taekwondo, no matter how grumpy I am before, I always come home happy.

Another way is to get outside and appreciate the beauty that surrounds us. I have a husband who hates the outdoors, but even if you hate it, if you forced yourself outside with the intent on finding one beautiful thing, you might surprise yourself at what you find. If you can’t go outside? Look out your window. What do you see? There is something about the earth, the beauty of it that brings peace and even joy.

I could go on, but I’m interested in finding out what you, the readers, believe finds happiness. I think the answer may be very different, but I also think we may find some similar truths that apply to everyone.

Thanks for being my guest today, Shanna. Sometimes after years of searching, we find that what really made us happy was right under our nose. The little things bring me the most joy. To visit Shanna's personal blog click HERE.

Next week my guest blogger will be L.T. Elliot.


  1. Thank you, Shanna. Sometimes I need to be reminded to live in the here and now. It's easy to look forward (and even back) but one of my favorite thoughts is "Sure footing depends on the direction you're looking at."

  2. Bringing happiness to my children makes me happy. And I don't mean buying them the latest toy. Things like playing leggos with them, making treasure hunts, baking with them sledding... It is the little things.

  3. Inspiring Blog, Shanna. I can't wait to read more of your work.

  4. So good to hear from you, Shanna! Keep working on those books. I want to read them in print. :)