The "Happy" in Happy Herbivore (Happy is Love!)

My Dad (Papa Herbivore) emailed:

"You may have written about this before but did you ever think about writing a blog about the "Happy" of Happy Herbivore. All of your readers know what the word Herbivore means but I'm not so sure they all know, or experience, or feel what all happiness entails. Just a thought."

He's right. While I've talked about Herbie, and why I chose an elephant for my company logo (and what it all means) before, I've never talked about the name "Happy Herbivore".

"Herbivore" is self-explanatory, but what about the "Happy" part?

Fun fact: I didn't come up with the name "Happy Herbivore." I'd originally started blogging under a different title (with "Herbivore") in the name, when a friend of a friend suggested I change it to "Happy" Herbivore.

I liked the alliteration, changed my title, and the rest was history.

Though much like my elephant logo, the name developed a deeper meaning over time.

My mission with HH has always been to show--prove that eating healthy can be easy, affordable, realistic, and delicious. In other words, you can have fun with it. It doesn't have to be hard, challenging, stressful, and so forth. "Happy" sums all that up.

Live a little. Laugh a lot. This lifestyle is about enjoyment. It's about feeling awesome. Being awesome. Happiness abounds!

I try to be a shining, positive example. I love my life. I love my lifestyle. I'm a generally happy person.

That's what I want for you. That's my mission with my work. I want to show that this way of eating will make you get up and shake your pompoms. I want eating healthy to be approachable.

In my early years of a plant-based diet, I was a militant vegan. I wasn't happy. I was mad and frustrated all the time. I was alienating people all around me. I was judgey and pushy. (I've blogged about this in detail, read: Build Them Up (Why I'm not a Skinny Bitch))

I'm not proud of those behaviors, but I'm proud that I finally let go. Once I realized I wasn't winning at anything, I decided to be compassionately quiet. I swore to lead by example.

That's when amazing things started to happened. My happiness and joy was contagious and sparked curiosity around me. I started seeing real change.

I see that shift memorialized in the "happy" part of "happy herbivore" --- I want to make it about the positives. What people are doing right. I want to encourage.

I believe in progress not perfection. I find perfection--or trying to be perfect, is often a recipe for disappointment and unhappiness, too.

Finally, my quest for happiness also turned me into a minimalist, hence Minimalist Mondays on this blog.

In summary, I stand on the side of optimism. A smile really is a frown turned upside down.

Be happy.

At the end of the day, Who isn't attracted to happy?

And if you ever need a little pick me up, listen to Pharrell's "Happy". It's an automatic mood lifter :)