If you’re anything like the people that I encounter in my life on a daily basis, you’re answer would be,
“I just want to be happy.”
With everything that we have today, tablets, cell phones computer, WiFi, facebook, Twitter, SnapChat and the many other conveniences we have. It wasn’t that long ago and none of this existed and if you would have brought it up in conversation, people would laugh at how preposterous the idea might be. Even after having gone to the moon, and watching the fantasy TV space-western, Star Trek, they still laughed.
Now, only a few years later, we cannot conceive of life without everything we have instant access to, how we are all connected, no longer separated by distance, geography or time zones.
Yet, it doesn’t matter who you are, whether you’re barely making it on a minimum wage job, or a multi-millionaire, if I ask you what you want more than anything, if you dared to be honest, you would say,
“I want to be happy.”
Happiness is that illusive state of heart and mind that few of us are able to entertain for any period of time. Sure, we’re able to find things which bring us happiness, it is not long and these things which once were so sparkly and exciting, lose their luster and no longer make us feel good, and we seek some other form of happiness, or after a while, we might even give up on the idea altogether.
After a while, if you’ve all but given up on the idea of having any degree of happiness, you might think that no one has your back, you’re unable to trust other people, if you see other people being happy, you think they are delusional or faking it.
It’s difficult to get a grip on the idea of happiness, because it means something different to every one of us. And then you might actually be quite happy, but aren’t afraid to perceive your own happiness. We’re so busy relentlessly running the rat race, that we can’t possibly slow down enough to smell the roses, or even have the time to think there are roses at all, except for some inspiration for romantic poetry.
The pace of life, the calling of technologies clamoring for our attention, the stress of the struggle to survive and just make it through this life as best we can, keeps us from enjoying what we do have and joy floats further and further away. You might be surprised, if you could take a sabbatical from these constant pressures of life, you might be able to find enough peace and calm, to appreciate what you do have.
If you are but a victim of life, you need to find a way to stop life from having this power over you… and this also looks very different to different people. You need to carve out a place for you to enjoy some peace and contentment, keeping in mind that the things that bring true happiness may not be as large, expensive, or far away to find great joy in them. If you had the time and peace enough to appreciate them, you might find (as others have) that happiness can be found in the smallest of things.
So, whenever you can find even the smallest sacred space to ask yourself the question (maybe now) ask yourself, “What makes me feel happy?” Or, if you dare, ask yourself, “What could I be doing, right now, that would bring me joy, and make me so happy?” The answer to the second question is your happiness wake up call.
If you want to be happy, you need to take responsibility for your own state of happiness. It’s up to you to determine what you want, where you are, where you want to be, and to take the action necessary to move you from here to there. No one else can make you happy (you may have learned that the hard way). You must do the work to get there; it is all up to you.
You know what happiness is to you, you know what makes you happy, just by the thinking of it. Your heart, your feelings do not betray you in your quest for happiness. These feeling are your compass that you can use to guide you to what your heart desires and brings you a great sense of meaning and happiness. And you might find that these things are neither expensive, nor difficult to attain, but you must take the action to vector in the circumstances and opportunities for you to be in the right place at the right time in the right state of mind to manifest and experience your happiness.
No fairy godmother can wave her want and magically make you happy (at least, not for long). Your journey to attaining your personal state of happiness is on you, and you alone, and within you are all the tools and resources you need to make it happen.
Find opportunities to be happy in all areas of live, including family life, work environments, in nature or in the adoration of a pet. Seek happiness and put yourself in the stream of it (as it is flowing all around you) and you will find yourself in the flow of it, instead of watching happiness flow all around you.