Ep 243: Rochelle Gapere – One Happy Day at a Time

Are you a glass half-empty or half-full sort of person? What if there was another way to see it? That is, that the glass is refillable. 

No matter what you go through in life, you have the power to choose to fill and refill your life with what makes you happy. Filling your life with happiness starts from within. 

Today’s guest is the best-selling author of One Happy Thought at a Time: 30 Days to a Happier You –  Rochelle Gapere. She teaches readers how to live a life that fulfills and engages them at every level. Through shared personal stories, anecdotes and life lessons, her book teaches readers how to become a happier version of themselves despite life's inevitable challenges. In her book, she shares life lessons that will empower readers to make happiness-enhancing decisions each day.

Happiness looks different for everyone. For some it may be being at peace with who you are. For others, it may be having a secure network of friends and a family who accept you unconditionally. Others may find happiness with the freedom to pursue their life goals and wildest dreams.

Regardless of your version of true happiness, living a happier and more fulfilling life is within reach. But the question is, how do we find more joy in our life? Like anything else, it takes practice to cultivate ongoing happiness.

Happiness coach, Rochelle Gapere, shares with us her insights and knowledge on creating a life of happiness. 


Rochelle wanted to be an attorney ever since she was a child. She always liked talking a lot, and advocating on behalf of people, especially the underdog. During her early years in school, her classmates who were experiencing challenges or problems would approach her and she would fix it.

She always had a passion for helping people and fighting for the underdog. Because of this passion, she knew that going into law school and becoming a lawyer made the most sense. 


What you think you want may be different from what you actually want in life. 

As a child, Rochelle’s dream was to become a lawyer. However, when Rochelle started law school, she realized it was not her real passion and she could not imagine herself doing this forever. But the thought of dropping out of law school did not occur to her because she had the mindset of finishing what she started. So she pushed on, finished law school, and became a lawyer. 

However, she soon realized that being an attorney is not all that it seems. TV and the media do not accurately portray legal life or the life of a lawyer. 

For Rochelle, going into law school was eye-opening. Her advice for her younger self and all other younger people chasing their dreams, is to explore what you are passionate about. Explore your interests and meet other people in your industry so that you will discover what it is you actually want to do versus what you think you want to do. 

That’s a huge difference.

After law school, Rochelle had a few years of experience working in corporate law, but found that there was more out there for her. She knew big law was not for her. This is when she ventured into new spaces. 

Looking back, Rochelle says she doesn’t have any regrets with the choices she made because law has opened up so many doors for her. She believes that she had to go through all that she did in order to get to where she is now. 

“Explore what you are passionate about. Explore your interests and meet other people in your industry so that you will discover what it is you actually want to do versus what you think you want to do. That’s a huge difference.” @rochellegapere #chasingdreams


Once Rochelle graduated from law school and started working, there was always a knowing sensation that being a lawyer was not her calling. She started an event marketing company which filled the void for a while. 

But each year, the voice in her head kept growing louder, telling her that there has to be more. She constantly asked herself: What can I do? What should I be doing? What will fulfill me with passion every single morning?”

This constant voice in her head pushed her to start digging even deeper and ask herself what will ultimately fulfill her. In the midst of seeking the answer, she remembers asking God why he put her on earth and what her purpose was. 

Aside from her journey towards finding her true purpose, she was also going through a long-term relationship that ended. Before the relationship ended, she was helping her partner at the time to live out his dreams and fulfill his purpose, attaching herself to his dreams and goals. For a while that was okay, but when the relationship got uncomfortable and ended, she was left asking herself, “know what?”

She knew that even if her relationship ended, one area of her life being bad did not mean that her entire life was bad. Despite the heartbreaking experience, she always saw the positive side of life.  

Her heartbreaking experience led to her aha moment. That’s when she decided to put her experience down on paper. She journaled her own thoughts and feelings and started sharing them with the world through social media. Her happiness had plummeted so bad that she did everything she could to get back that joy she once had and she did this by sharing her journey with others who might need a boost of inspiration. 

As she was putting out that joy by sharing them on social media, people were giving her the energy back to build back her confidence. From this experience, she found out that she loved learning about happiness. From her heartbreak and rejection, she was able to discover her true purpose and calling or helping others find their own happiness in life.


“One area of my life being bad does not mean my entire life is bad.” @rochellegapere #chasingdreams


From her heartbreaking experience when her long-term relationship ended to her career journey and trying to find her passion, today, Rochelle is able to testify that everything is working together for the greater good. She would not be where she is today if she did not go through all that she did. Rochelle has learned that every season in life is necessary. 


Did you ever tell yourself that you will be happier when you have the perfect partner, or your dream job, or that perfect house? How many times have you lived less because you had the wrong definition of happiness? 

Ultimately, you can reach and attain all those things, but if you aren’t content with yourself, you’ll never feel fully satisfied or happy. You can have all those things but still feel lacking in life.

People think that happiness is outside of themselves when really, it all starts within. When you have an abundance mindset, there is no limit to happiness. Having an abundance mindset helps you see that once you are alive, you have hope. Once you have a pulse, you have possibility. 

The life that we dream starts the moment we choose. If you put in your head that you will only be happy when this or that happens, then you are postponing your happiness. When you postpone your happiness, you are under the belief that you have 2 more years or 5 more years on this earth. But the truth is, no one knows how long we have on earth. So live your life fully. Create your happiness today. 


“There is no limit to happiness when you have an abundance mindset. Once you are alive, you have hope. Once you have a pulse, you have possibility.” @rochellegapere #chasingdreams


What if you had one year left to live? Or one month? Or even just one more day to live? How would you spend it? Would it have mattered if you lost the 50 pounds or would it have mattered if you got your dream car? If tomorrow was your last day on earth, would you want to live your life doing what you are doing now? 

For Rochelle, she made sure that if tomorrow was her last day on earth she would spend it soaking up the joy and the love of the people who care about her. 


“The only thing we can control in life is this present moment. We need to have that self awareness that the present moment is an absolute gift.” @rochellegapere #chasingdreams


So, with all that said about living your life to the fullest and finding happiness within, the question is, how do we find out what makes us truly happy? 

Today, we are bombarded with so much outside noise that we don’t know what matters to us. This is why self-reflection is an important tool to finding yourself. Spend quiet time with yourself and get still. You’ll be surprised that once you start hearing your thoughts, you’ll start hearing and becoming more confident about the things that matter to you. 

Another powerful way to find out what makes us happy is by tapping in to our inner child. There is something about that child-like wonder and joy. Tap into the eight-year old version of you. Think about the times when you felt most joy. Who were you with? What were you doing? That starts clueing you in to some of the things that you enjoy. 

If you remember going to the beach with your family, ask yourself when was the last time you went to the beach? Why aren’t you incorporating beach time or quality family time in your life?

Did you feel fulfilled reading a book and getting lost in your own little world? So then, when was the last time you read a book? 

In figuring out your happiness, write a happy list. Get out a pen and paper and write down all the things that make you happy. This list will look different for each person. 

Next step is to ask yourself how happy you are on a scale of 1 to 10. Be honest with yourself. The minute that you can be honest with yourself, that’s when you can start your journey towards true happiness. You may need to get support or find a friend or a coach, but that’s all part of the journey. 


“Spend 5 to 10 minutes just being. You’ll be surprised that once you start hearing your thoughts, you’ll start hearing and becoming more confident about the things that matter to you.” @rochellegapere #chasingdreams


As human beings, we don’t realize how much power we have. We have so much power but a lot of us are so stuck in our heads.

It’s good to remind ourselves that other people aren’t really thinking about you. A lot of us are so stuck in our heads that we think other people are thinking about us. We are so worried about the judgement and opinions of others, but the truth is, we are all consumed with our own lives that we don’t think of the lives of other people. Take the focus off the external and bring it towards yourself. 


“I’m happy that I decided that I was open to growth because I could have easily just stayed stuck in my 10-year ago self, and I would have easily have missed out on the magic of this Rochelle.” @rochellegapere #chasingdreams


We are all special and are all miracles. However, there is nothing that we have gone through or are going through that another human being has not. And we should take this as a good thing. 

There are 7.6 billion people in the world and we all have similar experiences. There are really no new experiences per se. Going through heartbreak, worrying about getting married, finding your purpose, you may feel like these problems are unique to you, but if you look around, so many other people are experiencing the same thing. By sharing your story and being vulnerable, you are not only helping yourself but others as well.

Vulnerability is bravery. The more that we are able to speak about our experiences, we give permission to others to speak about their own experiences. Here are three things Rochelle wants to share with you:

  1. You are not alone. 
  2. Share your thoughts and feelings with the right people and you’ll be surprised what others are going through.
  3. Community is so important. 

Own your story because your story made you who you are today. And know that your story is necessary. 


“Our thoughts have power. Are you going to see it as the glass half full, the glass half empty, or seeing the glass is refillable?” @rochellegapere #chasingdreams


Worried that you might not meet the right person? Wondering when you are going to have kids? Wondering if you might have missed the window in life?

Stop worrying and instead focus on the fact that you are exactly where you need to be. Decide that you are enough exactly as you are. Focus on the things that you have control over, which is your joy, your peace, your happiness, and your health. 

Focus on what you can control as opposed to those things that you don’t, because that’s where the whole dissatisfaction with life happens – in that grey area of losing focus on what you have and where you want to be. Focus on where you are at and you’ll find that you are exactly where you need to be.


“I am enough. I am enough exactly as I am. Me, myself, and I, without kids or without a partner. I am enough.” @rochellegapere #chasingdreams


Fear holds us hostage. A lot of the time, we overthink things – the fear of failure, the fear of not being good enough, the fear of success. It is up to us to decide whether we let that fear stop us or use it as fuel to keep us going.

Stop trying to talk yourself out of your goals and dreams. Don’t succumb to fear. Just get started. Because that little tiny win will keep the ball rolling. 

Guest Recommendation: ONE action for a dream chaser to take– 

“Use social media for your benefit. Use it to inspire you.”


[04:10] Young Rochelle’s dreams
[07:46] Explore what you are passionate about
[09:15] Being a happiness coach
[09:50] Teaching lawyers to live a happier life
[11:00] Professions with a certain esteems or perks
[13:07] Finding purpose and passion in life
[14:52] Choose yourself and your joy
[18:08] Every single season in your life is absolutely necessary
[20:12] How not to postpone happiness
[22:30] Live your life fully
[23:02] Life is precious
[24:07] How do I know what makes me happy?
[25:18] Tapping in to our inner child
[26:10] Writing a happy list
[26:25] Being honest with yourself
[28:00] We’re all on our own journey
[28:40] Energy attracts
[28:50] Having healthy boundaries
[29:10] Your happiness is your responsibility
[29:30] Pruning all areas that are not bearing fruit out of your life
[30:45] Season, reason, lifetime
[31:16] Putting ourselves in boxes
[32:40] There are no new experiences
[33:17] Vulnerability is bravery
[35:08] Having self-compassion
[38:00] You are enough
[38:36] Focus on the things you have control over
[39:30] Happiness takes work
[40:06] Life does not have to be linear
[40:28] Be open to the magic of the universe
[41:11] Looking at the best case scenario
[41:44] Building happiness habits
[43:30] Just start
[44:30] Use and leverage social media
[45:50] Chase your dreams and win at life

Resources Mentioned


  1. We think that we have time. But what if you don’t? 
  2. I want to spend my last day on earth soaking up all the joy and love from the people that care about me. 
  3. You can’t fix what you can’t confront. 
  4. The only thing we can control in life is this present moment. We need to have that self awareness that the present moment is an absolute gift. 
  5. The minute that you can be honest with yourself about how you are truly feeling, that’s when you can start your happiness journey. 
  6. Do the things that you can do in your power to become a better version of yourself. The information is out there, but you cannot find the answers to your questions unless you get completely honest about where you currently are. 
  7. Vulnerability is bravery.
  8. Leave some room for serendipity and magic. Life will surprise you if you open your heart to all that it has to offer. 
  9. Do the work. Believe in yourself. But just start. 


  • “There are truly no mistakes if you learn the lesson in the experience.” @rochellegapere #chasingdreams
  • “So many people think that you have to figure it out immediately.” @rochellegapere #chasingdreams
  • “Every single season in your life is absolutely necessary. You may not realize it when you’re living in the season but once you look back in the rearview mirror, you’ll see how all the dots connected.” @rochellegapere #chasingdreams
  • “Romans 828: All things are working together for good.” @rochellegapere #chasingdreams
  • “Your happiness is truly your responsibility and once you take ownership of it, then you are able to cultivate a life you truly love.” @rochellegapere #chasingdreams

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