This last time coming back from home, I picked up a new book in Chicago. It's called The Happiness Project and it's by Gretchen Rubin. I've only read about 10 pages, since my life is stupid busy right now, but I've read enough to understand the basic concept.
Gretchen Rubin was happy. But she wasn't as happy as she figured she could be. So decided to take active steps towards seizing her happiness, but like most of us, she wasn't in a position to drop everything and Eat, Love, Pray her way across the world. And so she decided to make a happiness project. There's a lot more depth to it, I'm sure but, essentially she decided to spend each month for a year improving some facet of her life.
As I coincidentally picked up the book in January, that wonderful resolution-filled month, I thought it might be fun to try my own happiness project. Of course, then I promptly forgot, and got caught up in watching the Gatchaman (Live Action) movie on the in-flight entertainment system. Following that, I watched two more movies in Japanese. And as I'm not one to halfdo anything, it didn't stop when I got off the plane.
When I got home I watched the movies I bought for my birthday as well as the series I bought for Christmas. And then I watched the ones I bought last year. And now I'm working my way through rewatching the series from 2 years ago.
Here's a list of the Japanese movies and tv I've watched in January:
The Sunny Girl - movie
I need to buy new shoes - movie
Atashinchi no Danshi (My Boys - More than friends, less than lovers) - 11 episodes
Hentai Kamen - movie
Surely Someday - movie
Ikemen Desu Ne - 11 episodes
Sailor Moon (Live Action) 49 episodes
And so without even trying this month has become the month of on-screen Japanese.
But what exactly does that do for my happiness? Well, I'm a screen addict. Obviously. So massive amounts of DVD time always make me happy. Apart from that, watching Japanese products in Japan tends to mean no subtitles. It makes for incredible listening practise. Even though it was my 13th time watching Ikemen Desu Ne (yes, believe me, I know) I still heard new words and noticed new grammatical structures. So apart from the instant gratification that is burying myself in a cocoon of Japanese drama, there is an application for future happiness.
Also, I'm pretty sure I haven't mentioned it here, but I've decided to get into the entertainment industry in Japan. It will be quite a few years before I can do anything major towards that end, but in the mean time, all the time I spend watching DVDs is almost like an industry internship. Another application towards my future happiness.
As I didn't mean for January to be the month of Japanese DVDs, I have no idea what February will bring. I'm going back and forth on a few things. Maybe I'll get back to my efforts to get in shape. Maybe I'll try to do something more tangible for my entertainment future, like intern at a radio station or something. Maybe I'll get back to my writing in English. Maybe I'll start writing in Japanese. Maybe I'll work more on my Japanese-English translation.
But I've come this far - even if accidentally - I might as well do something towards my future and my happiness next me. Looking forward to seeing what it will be.
PS, You guys are observant so I know you've noticed that the name of the book is The Happiness Project and the name of the post is The Happiness Year. The Happiness Year is actually the name of the year running from April 2013 forward when Tokyo Disney celebrates it's 30th anniversary.
Details can have an inverse effect on me, working as demotivation.