20 reasons to be happy and hopeful about humanity, the future, the world… and everything.

1. Because we live in a world where two quirky guys can inspire 1,000 people to buy 1,000 ice cream cones for 1,000 strangers. Just because it’s a nice thing to do.

2. Because scientists just discovered a brand new mammal — and it looks like a real-life teddy bear.

3. Because every day in New York City — and around the world — women are saying NO to street harassment. And in many places? Men are leading the charge.

4. Because down in New Zealand, a costume designer created a working mermaid tail for a woman with no legs who dreamed of swimming like a mystical goddess.

5. Because lots of people are saying “absolutely not” to hate-blogging and online bullying, and taking a stand for compassion.

6. Because one of the most universally beloved television personalities on the planet is an out and proud lesbian.

7. Because at any given moment on any given day, you can watch baby pandas — livestreaming from the San Diego zoo.

8. Because books like Winnie the Pooh exist, and people buy them, and kids read them, and they live on.

9. Because there is a real person who has devoted her entire life to giving hugs. And has hugged 32 million people. And counting.

10. Because today, a young man can strut onstage to Beyoncé in a bowtie and heels — and receive thunderous applause.

11. Because you can buy a jar of salted caramel sauce on the Internet, right now, and in a matter of days, it will be on your doorstep.

12. Because there’s a style of yoga designed especially for bigger-bodied and curvy women, and it’s growing in popularity, and even mainstream women’s fashion magazines have taken notice and written articles about it.

13. Because you can read what RuPaul is thinking and tweeting about, all day, all night, whenever you like.

14. Because even today, you can pop a folded-up piece of paper into a metal tin called a “mailbox,” and it will be flown half-way around the world, just for your amusement, and usually for less than a dollar.

15. Because at a humble non-profit in Los Angeles, volunteers give 2,000 hours of their lives every month to help girls become better writers. And one of those girls — who was incarcerated six months ago — was just accepted to two colleges.

16. Because if you have Internet access — as 2.4 billion people in the world currently do — and access to a free blogging platform, you can write and publish your ideas. And help somebody. Or lots of somebodies. Immediately.

17. Because we live in a society where the world’s so-called “ugliest woman” can become a powerful (and hysterical) motivational speaker, and a force to be reckoned with.

18. Because it gets better.

19. Because of this.

20. Because of you.