Do you have happiness?
Maybe you don’t. Maybe you feel that happiness escapes you in your life.
Let me start by saying that it is ok. Yep, it’s ok to be unhappy. Why should I need to tell you that?
“Good morning” I say.
“How are you today?” I say.
What is your answer? “I’m ok.” “Great!” “I’m unhappy.”
If you’re like most people who are unhappy, you are managing it. Life could be better but it is not worth a big discussion, not intended to generate sympathy. It just is.
For one thing, it seems like if we aren’t happy, we must be absolutely miserable. If I’m honest about my feelings, some think you shouldn’t be that way. They think we should live a life of joy, sunshine, and rainbows with every waking moment.
I don’t think that’s practical.
In fact, I think it would be a bit boring.
I need unhappiness to motivate me to improve, to learn, and to grow.
In my book I talk about happiness as a goal. It is, but not just the type of happiness that follows you around. It isn’t what you’d exude to everyone around you. You wouldn’t be beaming happiness at everyone – no. You’d find happiness in what you’re doing.
Take me for instance, right now. I am pretty happy writing this for you. This is making me think, and I do enjoy thinking. Writing for me is the next best thing to chatting with some of my brainy friends and passing ideas. I can do this anytime, and practically anywhere.
I learned that I liked writing from my personal retreat. The important thing is I had to learn WHY writing makes me happy.
If I just go and write down a list of things I want to do, that’s cool, but why am I going to do them? Just because I like it?
I wanted to learn to play the guitar. So I went out and bought one.
I went online and took a few courses but I just couldn’t get into it. For a few months I studied really hard and I started to make progress, then life got in the way, and before I knew it, a year had passed and just about all my progress was lost.
So I sat down and asked myself why I wanted to play the guitar. Well, the only reason I could come up with was that it was cool, and I could play a song and maybe sing along. When would I get to do that? Who would I be doing it for? Once I started digging in a little bit I found that this probably was not going to be the best hobby to take up.
Now, let’s fast-forward to my retreat. I’m jotting down activities that would make me happy. I thought writing makes me happy. So I write that down, but then I take the next step. I ask myself “Why?” Why does this make me happy?
Well, I enjoy creating things. When I’m done writing this, I will have created something I can share really easily.
Ok, that’s good. So let’s go to the graduate-level of our exercise. Why do I like creating things? That takes me down a different path entirely. I like to create things because it’s something I can give to someone else. I think there’s a lot of joy in transforming thoughts, dreams, even materials and components into something useful.
THAT was a powerful realization to me. Not only that, but it was motivation. Now I am going to write but I have a purpose in what I do. When I’m struggling with writing I can go back and remind myself easily that “Hey, I am creating something that might help someone.”
Now even the thought of it brings me some happiness.
Thank you for reading, and if you liked this post, please share!
Take a moment to tell me where you find your happiness!