How Much Happiness Do You Want?

Arranging Your Mind for Happiness

Author Unknown

A 92-year-old, petite, well-poised and proud man, who is fully dressed each morning by eight o'clock, with his hair fashionably coifed and shaved perfectly, even though he is legally blind, moved to a nursing home today. His wife of 70 years recently passed away, making the move necessary. After many hours of waiting patiently in the lobby of the nursing home, he smiled sweetly when told his room was ready.

As he maneuvered his walker to the elevator, I provided a visual description of his tiny room, including the eyelet sheets that had been hung on his window.


"I love it," he stated with the enthusiasm of an eight-year-old having just been presented with a new puppy.


"Mr. Jones, you haven't seen the room; just wait."


"That doesn't have anything to do with it," he replied."


"Happiness is something you decide on ahead of time. Whether I like my room or not doesn't depend on how the furniture is arranged's how I arrange my mind. I already decided to love it. "It's a decision I make every morning when I wake up. I have a choice; I can spend the day in bed recounting the difficulty I have with the parts of my body that no longer work, or get out of bed and be thankful for the ones that do."


"Each day is a gift, and as long as my eyes open, I'll focus on the new day and all the happy memories I've stored away. Just for this time in my life."


"Old age is like a bank account. You withdraw from what you've put in."


"So, my advice to you would be to deposit a lot of happiness in the bank account of memories! Thank you for your part in filling my Memory bank. I am still depositing."



Remember the five simple rules to be happy:

     1. Free your heart from hatred.

     2. Free your mind from worries.

     3. Live simply.

     4. Give more.

     5. Expect less.


Preparing Your - How Much Happiness Do You Want? Game Board

It is very important to contemplate your most treasured memories and blessings. Include blessings and opportunities you look forward to each day. Select thirteen of the very best and write them separately in the spaces after the numbered black boxes on the top half of the game board.

Now, decide what thoughts have a tendency to come into your mind that drag you down. This could include disappointments, frustrations, resentments, anger, … Select thirteen of the most troublesome and write them in the spaces after the numbered red boxes on the bottom half of the game board.

The object of the game and of life itself is to live where happiness and fulfillment are and to stay away from life distractors. You live in your mind and you can choose to arrange your mind to be a place of happiness. Everyone has to deal with hardships and disappointments, but no one has to live there! Circumstances do not determine happiness. Happiness is found in the wealthy and the poor, the healthy and the sick. How you arrange your mind makes the difference. Here is your chance to vastly improve your quality of life.


Directions for Playing the Game

Each player has his own game board. One deck of regular playing cards is needed if two players, two decks if four players, etc. Shuffle the cards and deal 13 face-up to each player. Player goes through the cards received, separates the black and the red cards, and places them in two horizontal rows (one for the black cards and one for the red cards) from lowest to highest. An ace is counted as a one, jacks as 11, queens as 12, and kings as 13. Player removes any black duplicate. For example, a player might have a 3 of spades and a 3 of clubs. One of the cards is turned back in to the dealer. Do the same with the red cards.

The object of the game is to obtain any black number cards missing and to remove any red cards.

Before actually starting the game, have players talk about their current game board situations. They name the black numbers they have and how thinking about those things they wrote in the spaces on their game board increase their happiness and sense of well-being. They then talk about the red numbers and how the thoughts represented for those numbers drag them down.

Each player is given a pair of dice. Each player then announces a target black number he or she wishes to achieve or a red number he or she wishes to eliminate. On a roll, dice can be added or subtracted to reach the desired target number. Snake eyes (two ones) results in a 13. For example, one player might be trying to achieve a black 4. Another player may have announced his or her target as a red 10. No turns. All players roll their dice as quickly as they can. When a player achieves target number, he or she calls it out. All dice rolling is temporarily stopped while that player is given the desired black card or is able to remove the unwanted red one. The value of adding the black card or removing the red card in the player’s actual life should be briefly mentioned. Players then announce their new target numbers and play resumes. This continues until one player has achieved all 13 black numbers and has no red ones remaining.

Each player can use his or her game board as a personal program of happiness-building in the real game of life.

How Much Happiness Do You Want? Gameboard