You know the song…

You've got to accentuate the positive
Eliminate the negative
And latch on to the affirmative
Don't mess with Mister In-Between

Everyone's talking about New Year's resolutions at the moment. But rather than wallowing in regret or embarking on yet another wobbly fitness resolution, this January we've decided to embrace the positivity and potential that 2016 has to offer. We've been mulling over the idea of Happiness and thinking about the things that truly make us happy.

It's been proven that learning something new can make you happier and and so we're focussing our sights on new challenges and skills. I'm drawing up a list for myself at the moment; I'm really interested in learning more about video making and editing so I'm checking out some courses on that. I'd also really like to learn screen-printing so I'm going to get Helena to come along with me to some workshops soon (she doesn't know that yet.) And maybe some indoor rock climbing too (even just typing that made me all panicky).

“Happiness isn’t being cheerful all the time,” according to John Sharp, a psychiatrist and Harvard Medical School. “It’s being interested in things—finding out more about something, learning how to appreciate something better, incorporating something new that fits with what you already have.”

To kick off this year we launched Clever Clogs; the perfect mascot for your new journey of discovery or a great way to reward someone with their head in the books. She's going to sit on my desk and remind me of the importance of continuing to learn and discover new things. 

Whether you’re still in full-time education or all grown-up, focussing on learning and expanding your mind is one of the best ways to make you happier. Learning affects our well-being in many positive ways. It exposes us to new ideas and helps us stay curious and engaged. It also gives us a sense of accomplishment and boosts our self-confidence and resilience. 

We live in an age where we can learn about almost anything in the world as long as we can find the motivation and courage to do it. There’s bound to be a website, video or podcast that you can get access to for free (or close to free), where you’ll get the information you want.

Momiji can’t promise that Clever Clogs will know the answer to all the tricky things you're about to undertake but she will stand firm as a loyal supporter through the tough times and as a happy companion when you reach your goals. 

What about you? Are you planning to take on new challenges this year? Are you studying hard for a qualification? What have you always wanted to learn? I'd love to know.