Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy New Year! Do We Wish Happiness - or Health?


Happy New Year! Or should we say Healthy New Year?!

Healthy New Year!  

I wonder how long it will take me to remember to write the date as 2015?  They say it takes two weeks to establish a new habit. It will probably take me longer!

When I started this blog, my first post was a greeting to readers, with an explanation of what my blog was going to be about. (I just reread it, and surprisingly enough, I think I have stuck to those goals quite well!) “Making the most of every moment” has been a topic with endless possibilities!


The next day, on March 15th, 2014, I published my first actual post, Happy New Year - of Blogging.  In that post, I provided a link to an article of mine previously published by Yahoo Contributor Network, about the meaning of the greeting we often use in a new year.


Unfortunately, Yahoo Contributor Network shut down in August 2014. They removed all their contributor’s articles from the Internet, and returned the full rights to the authors.


Today is the first time a new calendar year has begun since I started this blog, so it seems like a fitting opportunity to republish that article here.  It is a little different than the type of writing I usually publish on this blog, but I hope you will find it interesting. I think it will explain why I am wishing you all a HEALTHY New Year!


"Healthy New Year!" seems to be a more meaningful greeting than "Happy New Year!" It is not imperative to have good health to be happy, but one cannot be truly healthy without experiencing happiness.


Why Do We Say "Happy New Year"? Do We Wish Happiness - or Health?


"Healthy New Year!" - Is this perhaps a better salutation than "Happy New Year"?
During the first weeks of any year, a common greeting in English-speaking parts of the world is "Happy New Year!" I am considering changing my salutation to "Healthy New Year!" This seems a stronger wish of well-being. It is possible to have poor health and still be happy; but to be completely healthy a person must experience happiness. Telling others to be happy is not the same as telling them that you hope they will be healthy. But by wishing family and friends good health, I am therefore implying their happiness as well.

To be truly healthy, one must be happy

Good health is more than just being free from disease, injury or illness. Our health is determined by every aspect of our lives, and has physical, mental, and spiritual components. Developmental theories such as Erikson's Stages of Psychosocial Development and Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs provide insight into how much we are influenced by many factors throughout our lifespan. A baby who is not well fed, loved, and kept in a clean diaper cannot be happy - or healthy. Elderly adults, who are financially stable but disappointed by the life choices they made, may become depressed and cease to take care of themselves. To be truly healthy, we must be content and happy in ways appropriate for each stage of our lives.

Things that bring us happiness can make us healthier

Health and happiness are intertwined in many ways. Music, art, religion and beauty feed our soul. Feeling productive, creative, enlightened, appreciated and loved can improve our mental and spiritual health, and therefore our physical health too. Our health is influenced strongly by not just our own happiness, but by the health (and happiness) of others we know and care about.

Striving for better health (and happiness).

We do not have complete control over good health. Genetics (at least as of this writing) are a factor we can only minimally influence. There are, however, many other factors we can control as we strive for better health for our loved ones and ourselves. Even as I write this, it is difficult for me to separate the goal of better health from the pursuit of happiness. Much of the time one either motivates or leads to the other. Regardless of the incentive though, what better time than the beginning of a new year to focus on these attempts!

So - when someone wishes me a Happy New Year, I will assume that he or she is really telling me not just to be happy, but to be healthy too.


My response, knowing that to be healthy you must be happy, will be a resounding Healthy New Year to you, as well!



What are your thoughts on health and how it relates to happiness?

This post may be linked to one of the great link-up parties I follow and list on my blog. Check them out!

6 comments :

  1. To be truly happy one must be healthy. Of course, we could always say Happy/Healthy New Year and cover all our bases lol. Here's to another year of blogging.

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    1. I like your idea of the dual greeting! Perfect. And yes - here's to another year!

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  2. Healthy/happy go hand in hand. And both of them trump wealthy in my book.

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    1. Absolutely! As they say - money can't buy happiness... !

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  3. I honestly haven't thought much about this, but you are so right! The times in my life when I've been happiest have also been the healthiest. A good mental state is always good for overall health! So Healthy New Year to you too!

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    1. Healthy New Year Lana ... to you and your blog!

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