1) The first day of spring
It's March 20th, officially the first day of spring. Butterflies are on the wing, seasonal blooms are brightening our landscape, the air is rich with the sweet scent of fresh cut grass. Throw open a window now. Stop breathing that stuffy office air and poke your head outside for a second to drink in the heart-warming, smile-raising olfactory delights of this, the freshest of seasons.
OK. So you might work in a polluted town centre with only the fetid odour of the local canal outside your window. Right now, the sky above may be an endless grey smudge stretching from one horizon to the other, with blue skies as yet a treat to which you can look forward (but cannot currently enjoy).
But come on! It's spring! Time to turn that frown upside down and embrace the feeling of hope and optimism that this, the season of birth and regeneration, stands for.
2) Dame Vera Lynn's 100th Birthday
Only the most curmudgeonly of souls will not be made happy by this joyous occasion. The original National Treasure and Forces' Sweetheart - made most famous by her still-sung-to-this-day, morale-boosting, wartime classic hit "(There'll Be Bluebirds Over) The White Cliffs of Dover" - turns 100 today! As part of the celebrations, two Spitfires will fly over the famous white cliffs of Dover today, and the cliffs themselves will have Dame Vera Lynn's face projected onto them. On #InternationalDayofHappiness, surely nothing could be more fitting!
3) The week of the 6 Music Festival
Though it does not actually start today, the fact that we have now entered the week in which the 6 Music Festival takes place is without doubt a reason to smile. It may not be of too much interest to Millenials or those of a more mature standing whose musical experimentation got no further than taping the Top 40 on a Sunday afternoon. But if you are middle-aged (in the broadest possible sense) and you pride yourself on having an ecclectic record collection, you should definitely have a smile on your face not only today, but all week long!
4) Data! (It's so easy to get, and there's so much of it)
Visual.ONS is online. OK, so it's still in Beta but what a fantastic resource it is! Want to know pretty much anything about the market you want to reach? The ONS has the figures to allow you to form your marketing strategy and plan your tactics with ruthless efficiency. What is more, if trying to analyse endless spreadsheets is not your thing, the Visual.ONS site does the hard work for you!
If you are some kind of data-junkie, and the ONS does not manage to scratch that itch, there are many other brilliant options available. Have you looked at Google's blogs? Have you tried the tools it provides to advertisers to help plan keywords and budgets?
The X Files told us, "The truth is out there." Whether that is true where extra-terrestial life is concerned, we cannot say for sure; but in terms of market analysis, it is bang on the money!
5) Inspirational businesswomen
In 2008, Jessica Alba washed some clothes she had received as gifts for her as yet unborn baby and immediately broke out in a rash. The washing powder she had used had been recommended to her and yet it proved, on later inspection, to contain a number of chemicals known to cause or agitate allergies. The mum-to-be began to look for purer products but found that she had to source the range of items she needed from many different suppliers. It was then that she decided to create a business to produce and sell chemical-free baby products.
In 2015, Jessica Alba's The Honest Company was valued at $1.7bn.
There is obviously a long story that could be told, to explain how a business went from start-up to multi-billion dollar success story in just a few short years. Suffice it to say in this article, it is all down to Jessica Alba's hard work, her commitment to her company's ethos, and her marketing nouse.
It's an inspirational story for our times and one that is worth celebrating on International Day of Happiness.