This week at the happiness initiative was something of a roller coaster. We started the week pretty nice and sweet - meetings with New Economics Foundation and Applied Survey Research that were positive and pleasant. Then up to a pinnacle with our first ever board meeting for the Happiness Initiative as an official 501(c)3! We practiced a bit of mindfulness at the meeting, followed our agenda and instituted Robert's Rules. It was all good. Then came the slam down. Our server went down- and with it the survey. The survey had gotten so many hits, that it overloaded. Thursday night I stayed up until 1 am trying to get it resolved, got up at 6 am Friday and still, we were not back at a level place until the evening. It was that part of the roller-coaster you that fills you with dread.
We are at the mercy of the internet –or world wide web. When something happens to our website, it is like we just disappear. I tell myself people will understand. But will they? How many people tried to take the survey in the last 36 hours and now see us as inaccessible? How many of those people, had they been able to get on, would have told friends to check it out, but now will tell friends they could not access it?
So, the survey is back online, but I am still feeling the wooziness from the roller coaster. I tell myself, this is a good problem to have – a variety of a “first world” problem. I tell myself, its not the end of the world, we will recover. Someday it will be a funny story. And at the same time, the fragility of our lives, or organization, and the deep dependence we have on systems like the internet has been highlighted for me today. I am not sure if this is a good thing, or a bad thing, but I think a little bit of both.
Post by Laura Musikanski, Executive Director of the Happiness Initiative