Finding happiness has been on everyone’s agenda more than ever recently. It has become the goal of many through better jobs, trips around the world, or even practices like yoga. But is that not the main problem in itself? Looking for something outwardly that is already present within.
The main problem
The main issue is the belief that happiness is out there; in someone else’s hands, in the future or in the belief of something. It is not. This takes us away from the fact that happiness is present in our lives time and time again but we are not aware of it or just don’t feel it.
Happiness is an emotion, something that you and I feel; just like sadness. As such it naturally occurs in our life time and time again. Whether we savor it or not is the real issue. A good example of this is the frequent habit of adding a ‘but’ to everything. ‘It’s great but…’, ‘I am having fun but…’, ‘I like it but…’. Everything has a negative side; there is no light without darkness and no darkness without light. What we focus on is what matters.
Happiness in the future
You often hear someone saying or yourself thinking: ‘I’ll be happy when…’ or ‘things will be better when…’. The truth is that things will never get any better than they are now. The only thing that can change is your point of view or perception. There will always be a downside to every single moment in your life.
Future happiness is an illusion. Day by day this illusion will take you away from the moment while always appearing as one step further. One will work again and again in order to find happiness, but happiness cannot be found; it can only burst from within. So one will spend his lifetime looking for something that is already present inside.
It is like running after the mirage of a pool of water in the desert when you are already carrying all the water you need.
Furthermore, happiness will never come with the acquisition of material things. You attach yourself to the idea that you will be happy or satisfied when you get a bigger house, a better car and so on. But the truth is everything can be better. Once you will have that supposed dream house, it will become normal thus pushing further the search for a now better house; instead of having a home.
Happiness in the past
‘I was so happy when this’ or ‘things were great when that’. Those are thoughts that describe an attachment to the past which often does not allow you to live new experiences freely and fully.
If you seek happiness, you are attached to a memory or idea; the thought of a past experience whether lived or seen. Your mind is dull, unauthentic and conditioned. You don’t realize that every moment is unique. Whatever you will find will not fit the bill thus making this search endless as the moment cannot be repeated.
Putting your happiness in someone else’s hands.
It is a fact that you and I feel happiness in the presence of certain people like a friend, family member or partner. This is not a problem in itself as it is part of a healthy social interaction. The issue can easily arise though when this happiness creates a dependence. When we stop realising that the happiness actually comes from within and not received from outside.
Similar to a drug, we start associating this feeling of happiness to being around a person and what we get from him/her. That idea not only changes your perception of that person but also the interaction that you have with him/her. You will eventually add unnecessary pressure on the relationship as you want more and more of ‘that’ happiness and do not want the supposed source of it to disappear from your life.
What does happiness feel like?
I do think that this is a relevant question as we often think that happiness should be a constant general feeling; something linear and as we know, there are no straight lines in nature.
So what does happiness feel like?
It is like walking on a hot sunny day. There is a general feeling of well-being and lightness. As you walk, you suddenly feel more than ever that deep sensation of warmth on your skin, going straight to your bones. You then stop, lift your head up and soak it all in; that stillness in time! That is what happiness feels like! Not the general state of well-being but those 30 seconds where your soul vibrates with a deep and warm energy.
The secret to happiness
No one can make you happy apart from yourself and no one else’s road will ever lead to your own true happiness.
To be happy, you must first feel good about yourself. For that, you need not only to understand who you are but also accept yourself as you are. To be at peace with yourself.
It is important to understand that it is not gained from others but born within. That everything is your own doing and your own responsibility. And thus there is nothing to ever blame on others. Even in the worst case scenario, you should still be in control of your state of mind.
You need to seek the path of right action. This will change your life deeply and set you free from remorse, fear, and culpability. This path is unique to you and cannot be taught by any guru or by following any schematic. It is based on The Truth and only applies to you at the specific point in time regardless of anyone else’s view of it.
Anxiety and fear of the future can easily stop you from enjoying happiness in the moment. So you need to act accordingly and do the best in what is in your control and let go of the rest as in The 80/20 Theory.
Seek detachment yet do not fall into solitude. Take what is coming and leave what is leaving. Every moment is unique and one should be born, live and die in every single moment.
Being alive is the greatest thing in our lives. The opportunity to see friends and family, make new friends, enjoy new adventures, to grow inwardly, and to discover; that is the greatest source of happiness.
Matter of fact, if you think about it, we are all dying. Every single second that we live we are dying which is even more of a reason to be happy to be alive. As I discovered after I broke my neck, I would rather die alive than be alive but dead. It is just a matter of choice and perception.
Make the most of every single day that you wake up! Jump out of bed and take now what may not be there tomorrow.
Never be without action.