Let’s start by asking -What is happiness???
Another question comes to mind: “how do you know when you are happy?”
Two very important questions – let’s see if we can explore some ideas, maybe we will find an answer or maybe we will decide to reach an answer that would comfort us and put us at ease. Maybe, just maybe, there isn’t one answer – maybe everyone’s opinion on the subject is a valid answer. Better yet, what if the answer is the question itself?
First, let’s talk about the definition of the word itself. Happiness can be defined in more than one way – depends on who’s talking!
So in my opinion, happiness is an inner feeling of the overall state of the person which is influenced by internal factors and external factors. Internal factors are composed of our mental state, emotional state, physical state, and spiritual state. As for the external factors, they are a combination of everything in our environment; from family to friends to our significant other to co-workers to neighbours and acquaintances … etc
Everyone in our lives and everything we are involved in plays a role in affecting our feelings and state of mind. Having said that, happiness is a feeling that we get when we are centered.
So what does it mean by being centered?? … Well, it pretty much is a state of being balanced. When an individual FINDS him/herself …….. what this means is that we KNOW who we are, what we want, what we do not want, when we are reasonable with ourselves, when we are not caught up in something, when we take responsibility for our actions, when we are self-confident and most of all when we are at peace with everything surrounding us even though it is not exactly the way we want it to be… Contentment, perhaps is the word I am referring to.
It is not easy to be at that state described, however it is possible. So the question remains; how do we get there? What do we need to do?
It is not something to be done really, I believe it is all in our minds – contentment is a feeling that either we want to feel or not. Happiness follows being content. So how do we become content?
Contentment is a feeling that either we choose to be in or not. We have a choice to get up in the morning and feel good or we can get up and feel bad. We can look at everything around us and feel we’ve got more than enough and feel grateful or we can feel it’s never enough and feel deprived of so much more so we end up in a circle of wants and needs and the list goes on and on and the result is we always feel like we are missing something and we are out to acquire it.
We are constantly convincing ourselves that if we get this thing, we will be happy and when we do, there is something else if we only just make it happen, we will then be happy….
The question is are we ever going to stop wanting? Is it ever enough? Will we ever truly be happy??
So how do we know we are happy again? We really don’t in my opinion. We have moments of happiness in our lives that we sometimes cherish, sometimes appreciate, yet sometimes take for granted and forget it even happened. There will be happy times that last a long time and there will be those that come and go and in a blink of an eye – it’s gone……
I will share how I know when I am happy….
I struggle in my life just like most people, I have problems and obstacles, I break down at times and I find my strength at other times. The one thing I do not do is “give up”. So I choose to find happiness in the midst of despair, I look for the good in my life instead of only noticing the bad, and I choose to love than to dislike. I wake up thankful and grateful for the gifts I now have along with the trials and hardships I now face and the ones I will experience. I am aware that life has both sides of the spectrum. I confront myself with the truth, the reality of what is. And with that mentality, I find peace in my heart, with myself and with my surroundings. In that state of mind I am describing, I find myself able to cope with life and everything that comes my way. I am able to tap into my inner self and the result is to be content always!! 🙂
Therefore, I am happy. I am happy that I get to love and be loved by others, to live life to the fullest and experience it all; the good, the bad and the ugly. In the end, I will be a stronger individual, a wiser person and a forgiving and loving human being. I wouldn’t change a thing about my life. It is what it is. And I wouldn’t be who I am if it wasn’t.
So my advice is to dig deep in your heart, and you will find happiness there. Even when it seems so far, it is so near that you don’t notice it.
Happiness is within us, you know you are happy when you decide you want to be … it’s your choice!! Now ask yourself: “Am I happy???”
I leave you with a couple of my favourite quotes on “Happiness”:
“The happiest people seem to be those who have no particular reason for being happy except that they are so.” — William Inge
“It is not easy to find happiness in ourselves, and it is not possible to find it elsewhere.” — Agnes Repplier