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happiness - The Secret to Happiness

Every year around my birthday I like to stop for a second and ask myself if I’m truly happy.

As we get older and experience more of what life has to offer, happiness can seem like an unattainable goal because we know quite well now that it can’t be bought with a new pair of Manolo Blahniks or a glass of Dom Perignon. We strive to procure happiness by finding the goodness in every situation, exercising, giving and receiving love, laughing with the family or by excelling at work.

What if I told you the key to finding happiness is not about how it affects you, but how you affect someone else?

When helping those in need, we give ourselves a purpose to live.

New shoes will eventually wear out, but a generous act of kindness lives on forever.

With the holidays around the corner, it’s the perfect time to pay it forward. Sometimes all it takes is one genuine compliment to lift someone’s day or, if you have more time to spare, try volunteering at a local hospital. Just remember that paying it forward should make you feel good about yourself.

For example, donate to a charity that speaks to you or volunteer at an organization that you support.

Here are a few of my continuous efforts in paying it forward to give you a head start on your generous acts of kindness.



When we’re asked to help someone, most people instantly think of homeless shelters and people there who have nothing: food, water nor shelter. Occasionally when I’m too tired to cook dinner, I’ll go to a fast food restaurant for a quick bite. McDonald’s and Burger King have dollar menus with an assortment of add-ons like small cheeseburgers, french fries and chicken nuggets for less than $1.30. I’ll purchase two for the homeless person at the end of the drive thru.


If you’re anything like me, you probably make a trip to Target at least three times a week! The house is always screaming for skin care, toiletries, home décor, groceries, dog food, you name it. I don’t walk out of Target without spending at least $100. Now imagine if a random person asked if they could pay for your groceries. Wouldn’t you feel like you just won the lottery?


My hair has never grown long enough to make the donation, but this is definitely on my bucket list.  Give your locks an 8 inch trim next summer – or now – for a good cause! Pantene has partnered with hair alternative source HairUWear to develop the first campaign to create free, real-hair wigs for women with cancer.

Here’s everything you need to know before making the cut:


One Summer during high school I volunteered at a local hospital to highlight on my college application. Although it started off as a selfish act, I couldn’t have ended my summer more grateful for my health and family. You spend your mornings preparing breakfast for children with leukemia and your afternoons helping the elderly walk. We don’t all have the same amount of money, but we all have the same amount of time. Take a Saturday off from your normal errands and volunteer at a children’s hospital or animal shelter.


I have an aunt who’s not only a single mother of two boys, but a full-time college student. A pony tail is her ideal hair style since her hair is long and thick, and her curls are unmanageable. “Pony tails are quick and easy,” she says.  Countless times I’ve swayed her into letting me straighten her hair, and it really brightens her face. Sometimes I think she’s doing me the favor seeing that I find it rather entertaining. It’s like practicing new hair styles and testing new hair product on a life size Barbie doll.

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