Tag Archives: happiness

A Happiness Project

How would you like to become a little happier? At this time of year, many people return from summer vacation to their day jobs. For most, this leads to a drop in happiness. That’s why it’s a great time to execute a little happiness project.

seven-1426637_640Your task is very simple: Each day this week, at least once a day, register your general happiness level on a scale from 0 (deeply depressed) to 10 (couldn’t be happier). If you are into apps, you can surely find an app to help you, but a piece of paper or a sticky note will do fine.


On Sunday, set aside 15 minutes to look at your stats for the week. Then think of three things that would each increase your happiness score by one point on one of the days. For example, you might decide that you could have had coffee with a friend on Thursday. Or you could have gone to a movie instead of watching TV on Saturday. Or maybe you could have refrained from correcting somebody on the internet, even though they were obviously wrong.

http://imgs.xkcd.com/comics/duty_calls.png used under CC BY-NC 2.5

Next week, your task is continue to track your happiness and put these three ideas into action. On Sunday in two weeks, when you reflect on next week, calculate your total weekly happiness and see if it has increased.

While sum_week_happiness < 70 repeat.

The Binary Career Choice

Because I advise people on which technology to use for their projects, I am also often asked for IT career advice. Much to my DBA friends’ surprise, I’ve garnered a “most viewed writer” rating on the topic Oracle DBA on question-and-answers site Quora.com.

This does not mean that I am an expert DBA, but rather that much IT career advice is general and carries over between specialties.

Why are you in IT?

The first question you need to ask yourself is why you are in IT. There are two possible answers, and in true IT fashion, they are binary.

  1. For fun
  2. For money

Many people try answering “both,” but that is a poor answer. If you try for both, you get neither. In order to be happy, you have to either be happy to work with the technology, or be happy that your job brings you the money you need to pursue happiness somewhere else. Make a choice.


I discuss this topic in more detail in this week’s Spiritual Programmer newsletter. Sign up here