Full disclosure: I think that the “terrible twos” are off by a year.

The last few weeks have been rough here in the Bennetch household.  Maybe it’s due to all the transitions — Emma going to school half-days and suddenly becoming a morning person (!!), me back to work full-time and taking a class part-time, etc.  It could be Em is transitioning into a new cognitive level — one where she’s learning to assert her independence (leaving her mama exasperated in the process).

But the bottom line is over the last little while, I haven’t been happy about meeting each new day as a parent of a BUSY toddler (or is she considered a preschooler now? Crap.).  Tonight I got this email from the Greater Good Science Center that asked me: Do you want to be a happier parent?


Part of the email included a link to this article that explains how women are more unhappier today than in past generations:

A recent group of studies has found that women’s happiness levels have been dropping steadily over the last few decades, to the point that women now report lower happiness levels than men, a role reversal from the 1970s.

The email also linked to this article that discusses the socially-contagious effect of your happiness is on others in your life:

We found that social networks have clusters of happy and unhappy people within them that reach out to three degrees of separation. A person’s happiness is related to the happiness of their friends, their friends’ friends, and their friends’ friends’ friends-that is, to people well beyond their social horizon…And we found that each additional happy friend increases a person’s probability of being happy by about 9 percent.

Maybe one of the reasons why things have been so challenging here on the homefront is because I haven’t been very happy lately. I need to do something about that.

So, I’m going to sign the 100,000 happier parents by July 1, 2011 pledge.   The pledge reads:

I understand that improving my own happiness is a way make the world a better place. Over the next 9 months, I will take steps to increase my happiness.

I’ll keep you posted on whether or not my glass starts looking half-full again.