Nov 11, 2011
No matter what you look like or where you live, we all spend our lives searching for the same thing.
Today we have an epidemic of people wasting time and money by searching for happiness in all the wrong places. The Whens is revolutionary because its simple message can teach us where to find happiness now.
Who are our Whens then? To meet your Whens, all you need to do is complete the following sentence: I'll be happy when . . .
Chances are you have no trouble coming up with a whole page of answers. But every answer is the same: Happy when instead of happy now.
The Whens are the brain child of my husband and emerging children's book author Steve Hanson. The idea came one night while we were both chatting about how I thought I'd be happy when I lost 30 pounds, but I actually wasn't. I felt confused and annoyed that a belief I had had since childhood (thin people were happy), wasn't true. At first I thought I was the problem -- maybe I hadn't set my goal weight low enough -- but that's when it hit us: it wasn't the goal weight but rather the whole system that was wrong. That's when my husband reached for his notepad and penned The Whens.
In our classic book, The Whens are monsters that come in all different colours and sizes, just like our "I'll be Happy Whens..." Except our book encourages you to be brave enough to step off their trail and search for what actually gives you a long lasting smile in life.
When Steve first read me his book, I was excited at how he had condensed and simplified a very complicated idea about being happy now so that it could be accessible to young (and busy) people alike.
The next person to read the book was my sister, Louisa, who got goose bumps and tears running down her checks. She felt it could be a life changing book for people if only it had the right images. That's when she devoted almost a year of her spare time to create the perfect pictures, even though that often meant staying up until one am after long days of caring for her three children.
The Creative Voyagers are excited about The Whens because it's a great starting point to talk to children about the best ways to find their own happiness. Hopefully this is a concept that can help people change the direction of their life to a much happier path.
Copies of The Whens are available at www.creativevoyagers.com.
I've gotten a lot of questions asking if I dislike lawyers or education, but neither could be further from the truth. In fact, many of my good friends are lawyers!
In our society so many people think that getting an education and becoming a doctor or lawyer is the best thing possible. It really seems like "you've made it" if you can accomplish all of that. However, I want to suggest instead that following your passion is best thing possible. Go be a lawyer, but only if that's your passion. Mine is writing about clouds.
The lawyer section warns against doing task after task that others have said will make you happy, when actually they're making you miserable. It's about finding happiness now instead of doing things you think will make you happy in the future (like becoming a lawyer, losing weight, buying a nicer car, etc). Those other things will come if you follow your smile.
The first time I read the "The Whens", I was excited and filled with wonder that my brother-in-law could write such an amazing story and I was even more excited that I had the chance to illustrate this wonderful tale.
I feel like it's such an important message everyone should learn and it's taught in a unique and inspiring way. I am so proud that this was one of our first books that we did together.
I am very aware that many adults are too busy to read through hundreds of pages of a self-help book, so we thought this book would be fun to flick through while also teaching the masses a very important lesson.
I am also very impressed at the ability of many of the clever children who I have showed this book to: they were able to fully grasp the concept and understand the purpose of this book. It was amazing to see there faces when they learned that they could understand a concept that was written for adults.
I know that this book could touch the hearts and minds of many adults and clever children. It was an absoulte pleasure to illustrate and I am so glad that I took this on.