How to Be a Happy Heretic: 21 Ways

This morning I showed some students a talk by Seth Godin on his book, Tribes. (I highly recommend this book, btw.)

A happy heretic is someone who trusts herself enough to go against the grain, or contradict societal expectations, for the greater good. A happy heretic makes the world a better place.

21 Ways to Be a Happy Heretic. (Mostly I’ve done these.)

1. Take your kids out of school for a year and learn new stuff with them. I promise they’ll recover; you’ll have  phenomenal and memorable experience to share.

2. Resign from your job. A close colleague,  let’s call herTaKwanza, just did this. And she is in spitting distance from getting tenure at a big university in another part of the country. I’m so proud because she knows she is meant to contribute in a different way, not because there’s something wrong with where she is.

If you’re only there for the benefits, you really want to think about that.

3. Move to the city of your dreams….even if you don’t have a secure job there.

4. Start your own business. It doesn’t have to support you right away.

5. Write in your journal. Describe your ideal day, as if you had just lived it.

6. Spend some time in silence.

7. Invest in yourself. Hire a coach.

8. Decide that the best way to spread happiness is to be happy.

9. Get your colors done.

10. Start a blog.

11. Get a professional photo taken.

12. Work 2 days a week from home.

13. Eat raw for a day. (That’s a great excuse for eating a whole avocado.)

14. Stop complaining and criticizing.

15. Pay for a month of yoga classes. (And go to the classes!)

16. Make one small improvement to your bedroom.

17. Decide on a theme for your life this year.

18. Give a party for no special reason.

19. Do something this week-end that’s not normal for you. (There are plenty of suggestions on this list!)

20. Make your kids responsible for preparing and serving one nice meal.

21. Take a 24-hour break from the computer. Or cell phone. Or both.


4 responses to “How to Be a Happy Heretic: 21 Ways

  1. Great suggestions. I wish I had the courage to do them all. Shouldn’t you attend the yoga classes or do you get credit if you just pay for them? 🙂

  2. Well, I guess I’m assuming that if you pay, you’d attend and do it. Guess not everyone thinks that way. In any case, it’s all about persistent baby steps.

  3. I just found your blog by accident on twitter! It was a good Saturday morning read! BTW, I have actually completed 11 of the 21 on your list since I resigned from my job last year. I’m on the path to creating the work I love, I’m blogging, I found Christine Kane and now I found you. That’s happy in a nutshell today…

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