The Subject is Happiness

Today’s subject: Personal Happiness

First, a question: How do you define “happiness”? Some people think happiness is getting all or most of the things they want. They always have lists of new things they want or are about to get – cars, vacations, fancy clothes, new furniture, or the latest electronic toy. With the holidays fast approaching, these lists get more definite and, occasionally, grow larger!

However, often these people are deeply discontented. No matter how much they acquire, they never seem to have enough. A new acquisition brings them pleasure, but only for a little while. Happiness is always in the future, always appearing, and then disappearing. And if the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s that we haven’t missed “things” so much as we have missed the closeness of our relationships. Video conferences, phone calls, texts all work to keep us in touch. But because humans are social beings, we miss the physical closeness of being together.

Someone once said that there are two ways to be happy: the first is to have all the things you want; the second is to have the wisdom to enjoy the things you have. To this, let’s add a third: happiness is wanting what you have. More than likely, you have your own definition of happiness, because, really, there are as many ways to define “happiness” as there are people on the planet.

When you practice the “wisdom” way, you are able to appreciate the beauty that exists in the simplest elements of life. Even in hardship, you’ll find many reasons to feel joy on a daily basis. Sure, you’ll feel good when you acquire something new, but your real and lasting happiness will be found in relationships, in simple pleasures, in nature, and in actions that show love.

If you remember that the time to be happy is now, and the place to be happy is where you are, you will find a joy that no amount of money can buy.