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Make Yourself Happier: Imagine Never Having Met

The How of Happiness author Sonja Lyubomirsky explains one way to add some delight to your relationship.

Take the next 15 to 20 minutes to describe in writing how you might never have met your partner, how you might never have started dating, and how you might not have ended up together. What little twists of fate might have kept you two from becoming a permanent couple?

If you can't see this making you happier, you're in good company. Neither could the people in the research she reports. Surprise! Give it a try. It's shown to make happy people with good or great romantic partnerships even happier about those partnerships.

For Ed and me, it's easy to imagine never getting together. We passed like ships in the night at least three times that we know of before discovering each other. Even after we met in person, our expectations were so different we almost missed having a second meeting. After we became a couple, we discovered we had two dozen friends in common who had never thought to introduce us.

We were lucky. Sometimes, when the little annoyances of day-to-day life weigh on my mind, I forget this. Remembering really does cheer me up. Give it a try and let me know what you think.


Yes, some of our acquaintances knew each other before my husband Jason and I meet, but it wasn't until my room mate Janelle dragged me out on April Fool's Day 2004 that we meet... and then it was love at first read. In my book You Can't Get It' Cause You've Already Got It! it wasn't until I reviewed my life partner wish list and discovered Jason was my 29/30 man that I really opened my heart!

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Patty Newbold is a widow who got it right the second time...

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