When was the last time you woke up and said, “Today is going to be the best day in my life!”? Although there are no scientific studies to back it up, there is a pretty good chance it wasn’t today. With that in mind, here is a completely unscientific poll:
Which of the following is a wish for a special day?
a. Have a good day
b. Good morning
c. Happy birthday
d. Have a great day
e. All the above
If you answered e. All the above, you’re likely on your way to a great day and maybe today is going to be the best day in your life!
Every day can be special! Every day should be special! Ask anybody who has survived a life-threatening event. To them, every day of their new life is a gift. Every day is exceptional and after a while, even though the trauma that had prompted the feeling initially fades, each day remains special. You should not have to have been threatened with the loss of future days to recognize each day’s presence as extraordinary. Every day is an event.
There are good reasons that each day should be treated as one of happiness and joy. We are allotted only so many days, and according to recent reports, Americans can expect less of them. Earlier this year, the CDC's National Center for Health Statistics reported American life expectancy dropped again in 2020, a continuous slow decline since 2014.
Undoubtedly there are a variety of reasons for this decline, global pandemics among them. We may not be able to do much about arresting disease but one thing we can do to maximize our days here is to be happy. Happiness and longevity go together. Ten of the 20 countries with the longest reported life expectancies are also ten of the top 20 countries ranked as the world’s happiest in the 2020 World Happiness Report conducted by the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network. It may not be the most formal research, but it appears it you want to live long, you have a better chance at it if you’re living it happily. How do you live a happy life? One way is to make every day special.
Fred Rogers knew about special days. He closed each episode of his Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood television show with “You've made this day a special day, by just your being you.” There was no question that he meant it and that every day was special to him. In a 2019 Los Angeles Times interview, his widow Joanne said, “People invariably say, ‘Well, I can’t do that, but I sure do admire him. I would love to do it.’ Well, you can do it. I’m convinced there are lots of Fred Rogerses out there.” Fred Rogers made everyone feel special because he genuinely cared for people and was not afraid to express it.
You too can add to the overall specialness of every day. Be honest and genuine with everyone you meet, don’t be mean, treat everyone with respect, make everyone leave feeling good about having been with you. Give of yourself, encourage others to treat you likewise, and your day becomes special. We must uplift each other while we can because there is no guarantee of a tomorrow.
You make this day special just by being you. It’s time to celebrate each day. Let’s begin today!