happiness

Image by Denise Husted from Pixabay

The past year brought about much anxiety and it's been a challenge to find the light in what has felt like perpetual darkness.

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Image by martinnlp90 from Pixabay

Everyone has a bucket list, even if we haven't written it down. We all have a few ideas in the back of our minds about the things we want to do or see before it's lights out on life.

That's why the Make-A-Wish foundation is so special. They are often able to gift children extraordinary life highlights in the midst of tragedy and sorrow.

And every once in a while some of those requests are a bit surprising and off the wall. Hey, to each their own. Who knows why any of us love the things we love.

Redditor u/The_King123431 wanted to hear all about the wishes that have made people go... "Hmmmm!" By asking:

Make a wish employees, what was the strangest wish a kid asked for and actually received?
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The best advice I ever gotten helped me become way less self-conscious.

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New year, new attitude. And we have some advice on how to accomplish that.

Redditor u/TheReyzer asked, "What are the rules to live a happy life?" While there's no correct way to be happy, many people offered up some sage advice and revealed their personal methods for staying in higher spirits. It's been a long year and an even longer decade. It's a good idea to clean house of some negativity and start the new decade with a brighter outlook.

10. Don't worry about what other people buy

"Stop comparing yourself to others. All because someone got a new car doesn't mean you need to get a new car too. This goes for other stuff too, I just used cars as a example."

WavyyJ

9. Be happy for others instead of getting jealous

"Be kinder to yourself, and happy for others.

Instead of beating yourself up over not being able to afford the things some else have, say to yourself, 'l'm proud of what I've accomplished, and I'm happy for them for accomplishing what they have.'
Realize that someone else's accomplishment does not affect your worth."

SetMyEmailThisTime

8. Fake it til you make it

"When someone asks me 'How's it going?' I respond with, 'You know, I'm doing so great I can't even stand it.'

It throws them off so much. Lots of laughs and 'I love that!' in return. Even if I'm not having the best day, it's partially a fake-it-till-you-make-it mentality. And it passes cheer to the person asking a mundane question."

aulstinwithanl

7. Always learn

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"I will lump this with the best wisdom my father taught me:
Always seek knowledge, the minute you stop learning, you start dying.
Learn when to hold onto something, and when to let go.

The world is yours so long as you're willing to put in the work that earns it."

Extrovert3d

6. Listen to Terry

"I once heard Terry Crews say 'there is no way to happiness, happiness is the way' and that really resonated with me. I took it to mean, take every opportunity you can, treat every day as a blessing and enjoy the little things, and it's helped make some bad days brighter

Rickrossthebos

5. Try to smile more

"Practice smiling more in conversation, people will see this and find you more friendly, and you will have people nicer being nicer to you, and it'll make you feel good too. Also, meditate, just 10 minutes a day can help you focus on things better, have more control of your mind, and can help relieve stress. Another thing, whatever that thing you've always wanted to do, do it; if you've wanted to start a hobby and don't have any, try it out, and if it doesn't work look for another hobby until you find one that you enjoy."

TigerniteDev

4. Be generous to your community

"Always give back to the community. As much as you can."

MavericksCreed

3. Don't take things so personally 

"My top rule for living a happy life is just to always assume the best of others. By which I mean, if somebody doesn't invite you to event (or whatever), it's almost always easier to assume that they had good intentions and just forgot etc. It's sort of like innocent until proven guilty and it saves so much time feeling angry or upset at somebody."

ourladyofsorrows_

2. Mind your expectations

"Really low expectations."

Orcus424

1. Bad days are okay

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"Realize that it's okay for not every day to be sunshine and rainbows. Some days are going to be sad, painful, or mentally and physically exhausting. It can be incredibly difficult to get through these days, but they are an important part of life.

It's okay to feel sad. Take your time, and when you're ready, take another step forward. When you take enough small steps in the right direction, you're sure to come to a better place, some day."

TransientMovement

Christoph Hetzmannseder/Getty Images

Making changes can be difficult, but they're totally worth it when improving the quality of your life.

2019 is ending soon. As a year comes to its end, we tend to think back on how much our lives have changed.

Redditor u/Burn-It-For-Me wanted to know if anyone made big life changes and asked, What's been the biggest change in you over the past year?

10. Your job can really impact your happiness

"Found a job that makes me happy. Overall biggest change, I am happy."

fun_two

"I did find a job that makes me happy and moved across the country for it.

Coming into work happy every day is such a huge change to my life and something I've never really experienced before."

Ace_of_Clubs

9. A long commute can drive you crazy

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"Moving closer to my workplace, reducing my commute from 1 hour to 25 minutes changed my life and I was much happier."

ThebakLoony

8. Look the world in the face!

"I started to walk with my head up rather than looking at the ground. That first tiny step meant over the next couple years my confidence improved dramatically"

WarpigHubris

7. Mindfulness leads to happiness

"I started meditating. I went through something not super great about two years ago, and last year (after trying a ton of different things) I decided to be open minded and give meditation a shot.

I can say with confidence it's the best thing I've ever done for my mental health. Therapy and medications did help me, but meditation was the biggest thing that helped me retrain my brain."

SkyOnFire42

6. You also save a lot on hair products

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"Started shaving my head.

Gettin' old, the baldness was getting bad enough that I finally got to the 'shave the whole thing' point."

Edymnion

"It looks great on a lot of guys. Accepting baldness with dignity is the best way to go, IMHO."

azureai

5. You don't know how strong you really are

"Spent 8 days in the hospital, during which we closed on our first house. Got married three days after getting out. The whole thing gave me a lot of perspective and I learned exactly how much stress I can handle before melting down."

thegardenhead

4. Love is love

"Started dating my best friend of several years. I don't deserve her, she's the best thing to ever happen to me. Kind of sucks, because I have to hide it from my family. We're both girls, and most of my family are strongly opinionated Christians."

seafoam-ambitions

3. Cutting out toxic people is always a good idea

"I quit drugs and partying. I cut ties with a lot of toxic "friends" and moved away from the city I lived in. I've spent the year searching myself and preparing myself for a better future. I did it alone for the most part, which has definitely taught me a whole lot about myself and others as well. I'm beginning to live my life for me and that feels so good."

Toasterelli

2. The best button is the "mute" button

"Started muting people on twitter/facebook. Used to not do it because 'real life doesnt have a mute button' but guess what. Twitter does."

Semiotician_80

1. Two people's lives were changed...

"I adopted a baby from a family member who wasn't ready to be a parent. I've started to realize that it's not always about what's right or wrong or taking responsibility. Sometimes it's just about helping someone when life is rough. If you just support the people around you, you will be happier."

KTDid95