Lately I’ve been a bit stuck on the concept of happiness. A good friend started me off with a copy of Gretchen Rubin’s The Happiness Project (http://www.happiness-project.com/) for my birthday last April, and from the moment I cracked the binding I was hooked. I’ve always been a bit of a sucker for self-help books and projects, and this book was the ultimate combination of the two. I kept a notebook beside me throughout my reading and took copious notes on how to implement my own happiness project as well as endless lists of items to look up and do further research on.
The principal item I’ve noticed is how in tune I am with what is making me truly happy, or unhappy if that is the case. Happiness isn’t always elation, and I’m pretty good at appreciating the little things that add up to my happiness. The stranger that smiled at me at the bus stop this morning made me happy, as did the note on my desk from a coworker that said: “U Make ME SMILE.” (The fact that the note was accompanied by a Hershey’s kiss didn’t hurt either). Unfortunately I am also pretty good at pinpointing the little things that subtract from my happiness. It seems sometimes as though I spend just as much time seeing the bad as I do the good, although it is possible that I’m just giving more weight to the unpleasant things.My creed is that; Happiness is the only good. The place to be happy is here. The time to be happy is now. The way to be happy is to make others so.
It struck me as genius. Yes! Every word is pure truth! Why focus on those trivial things that add up to a bit of discontent when this moment is clearly the time and place for only happiness? I’ve printed out and prominently posted these five lines of brilliance at work and at home, and have already noticed my joy increase.
Thankfully being happy is a personal choice. If an unpleasant event occurs, it is my choice and mine alone on how to frame it. I’ve found that by simply asking myself if it is the actual event, or my own visceral reaction to the event, that is actually causing the unpleasantness has helped me to see that usually no harm has truly been done. While this is a sometimes distressing process, it is almost always worth the time and discomfort to look within myself for the answer.
Take time today to find the words that motivate you to happiness. Please stop by and share! I’d love to hear the words that inspire you!