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The Minimalists

Joshua Fields Millburn & Ryan Nicodemus write about living a meaningful life with less stuff for 4 million readers. As featured on: ABC, CBS, NBC, BBC, TODAY, NPR, TIME, Forbes, The Atlantic, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, and National Post. They live in Missoula, Montana.

3 PM Happiness Updates

At my former job, as a regional manager for a large telecom company, we sent midday sales updates every day at 3 PM. Nobody enjoyed this ritual. We didn’t look forward to sifting through the numbers, adding them up, formatting an email, and sending it to our bosses.

We especially didn’t enjoy sending these updates when sales were poor, because we knew it would earn us a phone call from the boss. And god forbid if you were late sending the update: that was an unforgivable sin.

It was all very stressful.

On a cold day in January, around 2:50 PM, I was sitting next to my boss in his office as the sales numbers started pouring in from my various stores. Knowing sales had been slow lately, he said, “I hope we can report something that makes us happy at 3 PM.”

I wrote down that sentence as soon as he said it.

He wanted some sales numbers that would make us happy, but I heard something more profound. You see, regardless of the sales numbers, and regardless of what’s going on in our lives, we have many things that make us happy.

If the sales numbers are down, if life is throwing you a curveball, or if it feels like nobody cares about you, it is difficult to find something to be happy about: but you know, deep down, you have so much to be grateful for—you have so much to be happy about.

So for the rest of the month (March 2011), starting today, I’m going to send a “3 PM Happiness Update” via Twitter. It will contain one thing that makes me happy, grateful, or thankful that day.

Care to join me? What are you happy about today?

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