We all keep this thought in the back of our minds don't we – "Are we really happy?"
Yet, for how much that questions tugs at us every minute of every day we often tend to avoid bringing it to the forefront and really do some thinking about finding happiness or what it is that does not make us happy.
After all, this is a rather complex question – confusing the issue of how to find happiness is:
- Does my happiness have to be linked with making other people happy?
- Is the key to happiness short term satisfaction, or is true happiness and contentment based on adherence to longer term satisfaction?
- Is it ok if being with someone else makes me happy or do I need to have inner happiness?
- And of course the really big one…is it ok if money makes me happy?
No wonder we have such a hard time getting a handle on this happiness question – as our lives grow more complicated sometimes we lose total perspective on what being happy even means or feels like.
Inner Happiness Key To Outer Contentment
A lesson we learn as life goes on (if we are lucky) is that relying on other people, situations or factors to find happiness often ends up leaving us empty in the end.
It's not that other people or things shouldn't make us happy – it is more around how those factors need to accent our inner happiness to really be effective.
We must start with an inner core of happiness that then guides us (attracts us if you will) to people, situations and factors that enhance (not conflict) with our inner happiness.
For instance, starting from a point of inner confidence where we live our lives in harmony with our internal purpose (refer to the very effective Attract Greatness on this topic), means that we attract those who help bring out this inner confidence rather than shoot in down.
Similarly, if we are clear on our purpose and direction in life, then possessing money or particular material things can be used to enhance our life purpose (helping others, learn more, etc..) rather than conflict with this life purpose (gamble it away, spend it on destructive practices that make us unhappy in the end).
What Makes You Happy?
So, that brings us to the FUN part – what makes you happy?
Let me kick things off, but I want to hear from you – hit the comment button (top right of this post) and let us know what really makes you happy?
Here are some things that make me happy:
– Being able to use my full creative energy (music, writing, leading people)
– Spending at least half of my day (more if possible) learning new things
– Sharing what I can with those around me (customers, family, friends)
– Silence – having time each day for meditation and introspection
What has the opposite affect, stifles my happiness:
– Getting too far into a pattern of doing without having time to reflect
– Having other people control my time & impact my energy, I have chosen to make this a major focus area in my life
– Wasting time with people who get in the way of those things that make me happy
– Fear, frustration or other negative mindsets that stifle natural curiosity, learning, free expression and growth
Ultimately, this comes down to knowing if I focus on inner happiness and stay aligned with that state, my outward behavior and impact on the world will be much more positive reinforcing the happiness and fulfillment we all seek. Of course, we are human and none of us are perfect, but this is a journey and hopefully we can continue to make progress.
So let's hear from you – what makes you happy?