Thursday, January 20, 2011

I Try....

This is my second attempt this week to post while the boys are sleeping. And it's a good thing that I almost drank that whole pot of coffee this morning because I have this feeling that they are going to wake up any second.  I just sat down after cleaning up around here.  I know Jen is going to think that I really shouldn't drug myself so much.  But hey!!!  Coffee.... sigh it's funny because it relaxes me just to write it.  But it actually makes me hyper.  Funny how we crave opposites.  Our body is constantly striving for balance.  It craves equilibrium.  If we get dehydrated we crave salty foods so that we can store more water, when we get hot, we sweat to cool off, even down to the molecular level, when our blood gets too much sugar, the body produces insulin which acts to store the sugar into fat, then we crave more sugar (because the insulin got rid of it all).

But would you say that aiming for happiness is forcing the pendulum in one direction only?   Will I create drama to bring things back to normal?  I don't know.  I haven't had much drama today because I've been too busy.  But now that I'm sitting down, things are a bit quieter around here... I begin to think about how I want the house to be really clean for the babysitters this weekend.  Mark and I are going to be shadowing the "marriage prep course" at St.Paul's the Apostle because we signed up to eventually teach it.  I look at the floors, and cringe.  But a little voice in the back of my head says, sheesh it's going to be a grade 8 kid watching our kids, she isn't going to care.  She'll want to know how to turn on the movie, where she can find the snacks and which kids goes in which bed :)    (ps. I was right... Luke woke up)

So instead of thinking I've just looked up a happiness questionnaire.  

Below are a number of statements about happiness. Please indicate how much you agree or disagree with each by entering a number in the blank after each statement, according to the following scale:

1 = strongly disagree
2 = moderately disagree
3 = slightly disagree
4 = slightly agree
5 = moderately agree
6 = strongly agree

The Questionnaire
1. I don't feel particularly pleased with the way I am. (R) _____
2. I am intensely interested in other people. _____
3. I feel that life is very rewarding. _____
4. I have very warm feelings towards almost everyone. _____
5. I rarely wake up feeling rested. (R) _____
6. I am not particularly optimistic about the future. (R) _____
7. I find most things amusing. _____
8. I am always committed and involved. _____
9. Life is good. _____
10. I do not think that the world is a good place. (R) _____
11. I laugh a lot. _____
12. I am well satisfied about everything in my life. _____
13. I don't think I look attractive. (R) _____
14. There is a gap between what I would like to do and what I have done. (R) _____
15. I am very happy. _____
16. I find beauty in some things. _____
17. I always have a cheerful effect on others. _____
18. I can fit in (find time for) everything I want to. _____
19. I feel that I am not especially in control of my life. (R) _____
20. I feel able to take anything on. _____
21. I feel fully mentally alert. _____
22. I often experience joy and elation. _____
23. I don't find it easy to make decisions. (R) _____
24. I don't have a particular sense of meaning and purpose in my life. (R) _____
25. I feel I have a great deal of energy. _____
26. I usually have a good influence on events. _____
27. I don't have fun with other people. (R) _____
28. I don't feel particularly healthy. (R) _____
29. I don't have particularly happy memories of the past. (R) _____

Calculate your score
Step 1: Items marked (R) should be scored in reverse:
If you gave yourself a "1," cross it out and change it to a "6."
Change "2'' to a "5''
Change "3'' to a "4''
Change "4'' to a "3''
Change "5'' to a "2''
Change "6'' to a "1''

Step 2: Add the numbers for all 29 questions. (Use the converted numbers for the 12 items that are reverse scored.)

Step 3: Divide by 29. So your happiness score = the total (from step 2) divided by 29.
We recommend you record your score and the date. Then you'll have the option to compare your score now with your score at a later date. This can be especially helpful if you are trying some of the exercises, and actively working on increasing your happiness.

The lowest possible score is 1 and the highest possible score is 6. (The average is around 4.30).

Hills, P., & Argyle, M. (2002). The Oxford Happiness Questionnaire: a compact scale for the measurement of psychological well-being. Personality and Individual Differences, 33, 1073-1082.

I'm surprised at my score of 3.7.  I guess I thought I was happier.  Ok so at least now I can work towards something.  My goal is to increase my score by a point this year. 


  1. 4.07
    Quizzes are BS anyway.

    I think the key is to be okay with the answers you give. For example, I've always had a hard time making decisions but that's me. I'm cool with it. I don't think it detracts from my happiness (and actually offers me opportunities to laugh at myself).

    And go ahead and drug yourself, but coffee is gross. Tea with lots of lemon and sugar, that's the ticket.

  2. I scored 4.7 on the quiz, right about where I thought I would be. I'm very satisfied with my life at the moment, bu my job is kind of bringing me down a's tough to not let that affect you since it's such a large part of your life.

    Best luck to you Nat as you work towards increasing your score!