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Raising Happiness


July Raising Happiness Newsletter

July 29, 2013 | Newsletters | 0 comments

Time to rest


Because my great-grandparents grew olives, I’ve learned a lot about olive trees over the years. Olives are an “alternate bearing crop,” which means that they produce a lot of fruit one year, then basically rest the following year (producing what is called a “short crop”).

The more I think about this phenomenon, the more I think it speaks volumes about how to lead a happy—and fruitful—life. In addition to being a symbol of peace, olives are also a metaphor for how rest is a route to productivity.

In today’s hyperbusy world, most people don’t rest much. I can certainly be guilty of this, which you’ve probably noticed if you’ve been getting this newsletter for long. Rest is a topic I return to again and again in my Happiness Tips, my online classes, and my speaking engagements.

Here’s what I’ve learned: It is a myth that we succeed through unceasing and tireless effort. Yes, research does find that consistent and deliberate practice leads to elite performance in many fields. But focused work and consistent practice are not the same thing as unending work. Olympic athletes must rest or they get hurt. Fruit trees forced to produce for more than one season lose their ability to bear fruit. And us worker bees can slowly develop sleep debt so deep and burnout so profound that we are left too exhausted to function.

All of this is to say that I hope that you are taking a lot of time to rest this summer!

May you be happy,

PS: If you’d like to read more of my posts on sleep, rest, and taking time off work, check out this post.

Why I Send My Kids to Camp
This year, were away for THREE weeks!

It’s Summertime: Let’s Play!
Don’t squander your summer at work or at summer school—you’ll miss the best benefits.


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Learn more about the science of raising happy kids in Christine Carter's popular book.


Raising Happiness


June Raising Happiness Newsletter

June 24, 2013 | Newsletters | 0 comments

Building Cohesive Families

Happy Summer!

I’m headed out on a two-week writing retreat while my kids are away at summer camp—what a joy and luxury! I’ll be totally unplugged: no phones, texts, emails, TV. Just me and my reading and writing.

Back home, though, we’ll get into a new summer routine. Our plan is to spice up our family meetings, and spend lots of time with extended family—both of which will help us build a more cohesive family.

I wish you much joy this summer!

How to Build a Happy Family
Creating strong children and cohesive families through the stories we tell.
20 Questions to Ask Your Father  
Print this list for your next family dinner or gathering.

Rethinking Family Meetings
More calm and less chaos in just 20 minutes a week.
Do You Have Family Meetings?
Rona and I talk about the ins and outs of having successful family meetings: what works, what doesn’t, and what you can hope to accomplish.


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Buy the Book!

Learn more about the science of raising happy kids in Christine Carter's popular book.


Raising Happiness


April Raising Happiness Newsletter: Happy, Successful, & Kind

April 29, 2013 | Newsletters, Happiness Matters Podcast | 0 comments

Parents frequently tell me that they just want their kids to be happy. More often, they act as though they just want their kids to be successful.

Like most parents, I want both happiness and success for my kids, and one more thing as well: I want my kids to be KIND. The more I read about the science of kindness, the more convinced I am that helping others is the very foundation of both happiness and success. So this post pulls together some of my postings about how to raise kids who are kind—as well as happy and successful.


Five Ways to Raise Kind Children
Research shows that kindness is a sure route to greater happiness and, in some cases, improved health.

How to Raise a Hero
How we can make it more likely we raise heroes than bystanders.


3 Ways to Raise Kind Kids
Quick Tips for Fostering Kindness


Bullies, Bystanders, and Really Kind Kids
Is your kid a bully? Even if you’ve taught your children right from wrong, sometimes the kids of kind and compassionate parents can still be…mean. Rona and I discuss strategies for raising children who don’t bully others.


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