21 Day Happiness Challenge – Day 1

Day 1 of the 21 Day Happiness Advantage Challenge

Here it is, day one of the twenty one day happiness advantage challenge. I expect today to be a lot easier for the things I’m grateful for, than day 21. By then I’ll have compiled 63 things that I’m grateful for. OOFDA!

Let’s get started!

3 New Things I Am Grateful For

1. I am grateful for my incredibly beautiful and hard working wife, Nicole Kragthorpe. It’s cliche to say that you don’t know what you’d do without your significant other, right? But seriously, if you knew how much she did for me, you would know that this isn’t a lie for me. I’d be a damn mess without her. I forget things all the time, I am very sloppy around the house…it’s not good. She provides me much stability and much happiness in my life!

Paul and Nikki

2. I am grateful for my awesome son, Eston Kragthorpe. I’m grateful that he’s healthy, and smart, and that he’s growing up with his own personality that amazes me every day. Tho he gets frustrated quickly, like me, he is also very quick to pick up new things and run with them. Love it!

Paul and Eston

3. I am grateful for my job. This one may as well be that I’m grateful for my sister, Amy Svoboda, for marrying my boss / brother-in-law, James Svoboda….but I’ll save those for another day. =) I have a great job at WebRanking where I can put my real talents and my semi passion for the web to work. And some great co-workers in Paul Sr (dad), James (brother-in-law), Tony, and Chris.

WebRanking Team Photo

1 Positive Experience in the Past 24 Hours

Today we closed 5 credit cards! Such a relief, even though they all had 0 balances for a few months now, it feels good to finally close them and not have that temptation there to use them.


That’s how much credit we just closed. 18 BIG ones! You know how much STUFF you can buy with 18 thousand dollars! I do. I’ve had those things almost all maxed at one point. But there’s not a whole lot to show for the credit and wasted interest we spent with that money. Well no more! Thank the gods!


Cut up credit cards

We do still have one card open, and use it sparingly. but it collects point that can be use to redeem things.

Credit cards aren’t all bad…as long as you can pay them off without accruing interest.

Bonus Positive Experience

This was too good not to write about. I got to go with my wife to see Cas Haley at the Dakotah Jazz Club in Minneapolis!

Cas Haley at Dakota Jazz Club

For those that don’t know him, Cas Haley was runner-up on Season 2 of America’s Got Talent. We love him. He’s got such a great voice, and he always has a contagious smile on his face.

Bonus for me, I was right next to the stage where he walked on and off, so I got to fist bump him twice! Awesome experience!


Just to see if this whole exercising thing is all its cut out to be, I’ll post my starting weight:

Scale says….244.7

It’ll be interesting to see what it is after the 21st day.

For my exercise today I did 50 jumping jacks, 20 push-ups, 30 sit-ups. Hey, take it easy on me. I never workout anymore. Gotta start somewhere!

Oh and I’ll also be bowling tonight. Thinking that’ll likely be my positive experience for tomorrow, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves.


After work tonight, I spent 10 minutes attempting to meditate. Not sure if I did it right…I just sat on the floor and tried to just relax and clear my thoughts. Which is easier said than done.

I went with a method called Breathing Meditation, or Concentration Meditation. The concentration object in this case is breathing.

I imagined myself looking just like this guy:

Dalai Lama Meitating

Which I guess would be bad cause I wasn’t focused on my breathing…..damn it!

This was the hardest one for me. The damn cats wouldn’t leave me alone. Nikki interrupted me 6 minutes into my first attempt… ugh.

I don’t know how long I should be doing it. Should I be in a certain room? Lights on or off? If I have an itch, can I itch it?! If you have any tips on this, please comment below!

Random Act of Kindness

I’m gonna take the easy way out again for the first day and go with my wife. I wrote a little poem that’s sure to make her smile! Here it is:

Baby, honey, sugar
Homey, mommy, Nikki
No matter what I call you
My love for you is sticky.

Sticky is quite a strange word
What I meant to say was pure,
I don’t know if you believe that
But I am very sure.

When I met you I was single
And I’m very glad I was
I gave to you my number,
For only just because.

Because I knew you were the one
The only one for me.
And now we’re together forever
Like we were always meant to be!


I know, right? Posted that right to her Facebook wall, so everyone can “awwww” together.

Wrapping Up Day 1

That’s it for day 1. That wasn’t so bad. Hope you enjoyed reading along. I hope you decide to take the challenge yourself. If you do, please feel free to share your journal for day 1 in the comments down below.

Check out how my wife did on day one.

Until tomorrow!


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