Written by : Carol Areas 

Happiness Rocks

We are a Brazilian family living in California. We left our country eight years ago and lived in Canada (Toronto) for almost four years. We then moved to San Diego. My family includes Paulo, my husband; Antonio, our son; and our amazing Boston Terriers, Sgt. Pepper and Hey Jude.

In our first year in the United States, I was going through a hard time. One day I went to the beach and picked up a few rocks as I walked. I believed that if I wrote positive words on them and scattered them throughout the house, it would make me feel better. When my son got home from school (he was 10 years old at that time) and saw the rocks, he said: “This is so cool! Let’s paint a lot of them and spread them all over the city to make more people happy.” We have continued to spread joy this way for the last four years.

The rocks are left randomly for people to find. We have shared them all over the world, thanks to so many adorable volunteers who help us to spread the love. We just want to put more love into the world so full of selfies and people becoming more and more self-involved. Our Word Rocks Project taught me something very important in these last four years: The world is full—very full—of people in need of love. Or affection. In need of attention and comfort. And this has been a great and deep lesson in my life.

Positive feedback

People who have found the rocks tell us, “I found the perfect word at the perfect moment.” They often credit the discovery to some kind of magic, or a sign—a message from the angels. Then there was the girl who found a “Be happy” rock in the morning that her brother would be turning 27. He had been murdered a few months before. For her, the rock was a message from him, saying, “Life goes on. Be happy, my sister.”

It brings me satisfaction to design the rocks with my family and find creative ways to share them. We are endlessly surprised and pleased at the way our project invites new, meaningful conversations with people around the world we would never have known otherwise.

It means a lot to me that I am bringing a positive feeling to the person who finds the rock. It really fills my heart that I can bring hope or a smile through an anonymous gesture. When you open your heart to a greater love, everything makes sense, and life becomes more beautiful. Love shared is love multiplied.

Read more: Choose a Word of the Year to Create Lasting Change

For more on Carol’s Word Rocks Project, follow her at on Instagram, her Etsy store or her website wordrocks.me.

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