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DANIEL CLIFTON • PICAYUNE EDITOR

MARBLE FALLS — More and more research is showing one of the best ways to achieve success doesn’t come through landing a big-paying career or taking that around-the-world trip. It starts with something within all of our reaches.

“Happiness,” Cece Pacini said. “We like to think having all those things we want or getting the right job is the key to success. But research shows that happiness is actually the precursor to success. It starts with happiness.”

Pacini is hoping to start up a local “happiness movement” in the Highland Lakes. It’s all part of a national endeavor to help people achieve happiness now, each day, instead of thinking it’s linked to some dream job or other tangible item.

The idea for the movement actually began with the creation of International Day of Happiness by the United Nations several years ago. On March 20, the country and world celebrated the day. As part of the local movement through www.actsofhappiness.org, Pacini coordinated happiness boards to hang at several area schools, a library and a business.

“We just want people to get thinking about the things that make them happy,” Pacini said.

One of the happiness boards hangs outside the main office at Marble Falls Elementary School. Over the days leading up to the International Day of Happiness, students and staff have scribbled down things that make them happy.

“The idea is when kids and teachers walk by this, they can look at it and just remember the things that make them happy,” Pacini said. “If you look at it, you see a lot of the things that make us happy are things we see or do almost every day.”

Other places people can find the happiness boards are Colt Elementary School, First United Methodist Church of Marble Falls pre-school, First Baptist Christian School in Marble Falls, the Marble Falls Public Library and Noon Spoon Cafe in Marble Falls.

Several of the locations have expressed interest to keep the walls up for several weeks. Pacini said the two public schools will keep the boards up through the students’ standardized-testing period.

Along with giving people a place to write something that makes them happy, Pacini hopes the boards encourage folks to do something every day to make themselves and others happy.

“It could be something as simple as holding a door open for somebody or just smiling at someone,” she said. “We’re just trying to spread the happiness.”

daniel@thepicayune.com