CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- Are some people just more cranky than others? Or more perky? Do circumstances influence crankiness and perkiness?
I would say yes, yes and sometimes.
We're all familiar with our IQ (intelligence quotient), and there's been a lot of recent research on EQ theory (emotional quotient). Now there's interest in our HQ. It's not just the abbreviation for headquarters anymore. It can also refer to our "happiness quotient." Taking a look at our attitudes and outlooks on life can yield clues into our HQ.
Psychologist Dan Baker has developed a questionnaire on this topic, based on the theory that happiness develops from a number of internal qualities, including courage, love, humor, altruism and a sense of purpose.
Take a look and see how you'd rank yourself. Don't overanalyze the statements -- just go with your gut feeling. You'll likely gain some insights into areas that could boost your happiness on an ongoing basis.
Start by choosing how often you agree with the following statements:
N = Never; R = Rarely; S = Sometimes; F = Frequently
1. I believe my life will truly begin when the right person or circumstance comes along.
2. I feel best when I give unconditionally to others.
3. When I think about people in my life, I focus on those who have hurt or disappointed me.
4. When I think about people in my life, I focus on those I care about and love.
5. There is not enough time for taking care of me.
6. I've helped myself through difficult times with a strong, positive attitude.
7. I take myself very, very seriously.
8. I believe it's up to me to live my life fully -- and to find meaning.
9. When things don't go well, I feel trapped or overwhelmed.
10. Although life's circumstances change, my beliefs and capabilities will allow me to survive and thrive.
11. Who wouldn't rather receive a gift than give one?
12. There is a spiritual power that I can turn to for comfort whenever I need to.