100 days of Happiness by Martina Zunica
Relying on memory, I feel like I mostly wasted my time or I didn’t have enough events where I could say, “Yeah, great year. I really enjoyed it!” That’s mostly because I’m forgetful, but data (almost) never lies! In fact, researchers found that when we try to recall past events, those memories can get changed, reflecting inaccurate details or told from different points of view. That’s the reason why I started this visualization, to bring with me in 2022 a better and real perception of my memories. In anticipation of this year-end accounting, I decided to evaluate 2021 based on tangible and clear data about how I felt, tracking what made me happy over one hundred days.
I collected data every day for one hundred consecutive days.
Every time I felt happy about something, I wrote it down in my phone notes, describing the date, what made me happy, where I was, and who was with me or what prompted that happiness. When the collecting and tracking process ended, I converted the notes into a dataset on Google Sheets, to make the filtering process easier. I decided to visualize the happiness average as a colored, eye-catching circle and the other data based on a neutral grid. I created two opposite half circles as the grid to distinguish indoor and outdoor events and the categories they belonged to. I chose symbols to identify people’s categories. The end result turned out to be a solid infographic, composed of one hundred graphs–one for each day.
Completing this project helped me realize that sometimes we just need some visual notes to remind us how lucky we are. In fact, my personal findings validated studies that show that exercising via daily positive activity “homework” may help improve feelings of wellness. This infographic helped me to appreciate this complex COVID-ful year, illuminating all the people and events made me actually happy. It turns out that happiness is all around us, everyday. Sometimes we just need to pay attention.