Hello, and welcome to the "Happiness Tips" newsletter. In addition to a helpful tip for increasing your happiness, you can find out where I'll be signing books, and how to contact me, along with "Happiness Tips from Tina" in every month's newsletter. Please remember to add tina.tinatessina.com to your "acceptable" list, especially if you're on AOL.
Newsletter Dated: 12/26/2003 1:54:31 PM
Subject: Happiness Tips from Tina: Humor and Hope
Welcome to our new subscribers, I'd love to hear from all of you, and to share your e-mails with the newsletter list. I've printed the e-mails I got from all of you at the bottom of this newsletter.
I'm sending this issue out a few days early, so you can use the New Year's Eve ritual if you like.
Happiness Tip: Humor and Hope
She was an Italian immigrant in New Jersey, a hard-working, frugal, Catholic single mother who lost her husband in WWII. She spent most days of her life as a "spooler" in a thread factory, retiring just before her job was automated. Her English was good, but she didn't always catch the finer points. She sang Italian opera arias just for pleasure.
One Christmas in the mid 1950's, the local tree lot advertised a new "miracle preservative" that would keep the needles on the (fresh-cut) tree, and keep it green. She paid extra for a small apartment-sized one, took it home and decorated it. When Christmas was over, the tree still looked good. So, she wrapped it up in newspaper, fully decorated, and put it away. The next year, she unwrapped it to find the paper full of needles. The tree was just a pathetic stick, with most of the decorations still on it. She was my aunt Elsie, and I know this story because she told this joke on herself year after year, and everyone would laugh. She lived every day with hope and a sense of humor.
Now, when I look back from the perspective of my own life, I see this as a metaphor for how she used humor to ease all the disappointments and losses of life. Every year brings new wonders, new achievements, and also loss. If we can view the losses with a sense of humor, pick ourselves up and hope again, we will also be more present when the gifts are revealed.
Richard and I enjoy doing this ceremony on New Year's Eve and on our anniversary. You may want to make it an ongoing part of your relationship, too. I'm sending this January newsletter a bit early, so you can join us in spirit.
You'll need paper and pencils. If you have a fireplace, get two small paper bags—if not, a large ashtray and some matches, and a new calendar that includes December 31, 2004.
Make two separate lists. On the first, list what you'd like to eliminate from your life -- hassles, difficulties, deprivations, disappointments, worries – this is the "release list."
The second list is the "creation list" -- what you'd like to bring into or create in your life and relationship to replace what you're releasing.
Once you've written and shared your lists, crumple up the "elimination" list. If you have a fire in a fireplace, get your paper bag, put the list in it, blow in some air, twist the top tight and toss it in the fire. It will "pouf" into flame and be consumed. Or, simply light your list with a match or from a candle and place it in the big ashtray. As it does this, say out loud, "I release this energy into the universe to be transformed into something more useful."
Do this as ceremoniously as you like. If you like tradition and ritual, have music, candles, incense, etc. Make your lists as simple or as fancy and artistic as you wish. If you're religious, include a reference to your God or goddess. For example, you can turn your "release" list over to a saint, to Jesus to Gaia or to your Higher Power and ask for your "creations" from the same source.
Then, take your "creation" lists and tape them on the calendar page one year from today's date. There's nothing more to do for one year, until that day rolls around.
On that day, take out your lists, and you'll be surprised at how much of what you wanted to create you've accomplished. Richard and I find this a delightful, encouraging process to do twice a year. We include lots of friends in the New Year's Eve ceremony but keep our wedding anniversary ceremony private.
Our New Year's Wish For You
We wish for you
A table of friends
Where the food is abundant
and the fun never ends
A holiday bright
With peace and good cheer
That continues to bless you
Throughout the new year.
May laughter and love
Find you day after day
And may many blessings
Come swiftly your way
We wish you a new year
To make your heart sing
Where the Spirit of Love
Brings you every good thing.
Tina B.Tessina & Richard N. Sharrard
© 2003 Tina B. Tessina
Here's how we can get to know each other better.
Catch my radio show on TWO new web networks: "The Psyche Deli: delectable tidbits for the subconscious" every Thursday. 4-5:00 PM PST live on www.wpmd.org. Click on the"click here to listen" button, turn up your speakers, and join us!! Call in at 562-860-2451 x2628 or e-mail to ask questions on air. We're also on Book Crazy Radio on www.BookCrazy.net Fridays at 5:00 & 11:00 AM & PM, EST.
Online Classes for Continuing Education Credit
Through my website, you can get CE credits online based on my books:
It Ends With You
How to Be a Couple and Still Be Free
The Real 13th Step
To sign up for classes or browse my books, visit www.tinatessina.com
I welcome your feedback and support, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Wishing you joy,
Tina B. Tessina, PhD
* I love your newsletter! I feel like I am with you once again.
*Lovely. Thanks for the memories.
Holiday love from one of your publishing family,
* Was deeply touched while reading your 'happiness tips' note. It is truly beautiful and so meaningful. Thoughts to live by! May I share this with others?
Arline, of course you can. Just let people know where they can sign up.
* Thank you for the "The Family of the Heart".
* I've been meaning to tell you how much I appreciate these e-mails from you. This last one about the family we have with friends was great.
*nice article, tina! enjoyed reading...so sorry you don't have any family of your own, but you DO have one here, and let me be among the first to say merry christmas (or whatever you choose to celebrate; me, i've always celebrated christmas!)! happy holidays, too! (((HUGS))) and much love, your tx. friend, karen
thanks, Karen, Tim, Parisa – I really appreciate the support.
* A very nice article and so timely for this holiday season!
Thanks, Nikki – I'm glad you enjoyed it.
* Your comments were right on! I am so proud of your accomplishments---you are kicking major butt in the realm of self-improvement and counseling...you are a true guru!
Thanks, Rinaldo – it's great to hear from you.
*That was wonderful! I am so thrilled that you used our meeting and
friendship to make such a lovely point about family. Thank God I have you.
Much much love
Visit Tina B Tessina at: http://www.authorsden.com/tinabtessina