Should you go look for happiness or trust that it will find you?
The journey of life is filled with constant pursuit of happiness among other needs. Happiness is a state of mind that defines the feeling of contentment, joy and satisfaction. Everything that one does is to be happy in life and when you do something truly well, you feel content and good about yourself, your energy levels are up, you begin to feel better if you are unwell, productivity takes front seat, and you have a positive outlook on life. There are certain things that can bring you so much joy.
There are two ways to approach happiness, one is to maintain balance of emotions. While everybody experiences negative as well as positive emotions and moods, but choosing to be happy means focusing on the positive and ignoring the negative. The other way is to be satisfied with the life you have created for yourself. This means being content with what you do, who you live with, your achievements and things that add value to your life.
How does one look for happiness?
The heart desires to be happy, on most days. However, it wouldn’t feel normal if you were to remain happy all the time, so how does one find the balance? By making the right choice, that works for you. The most effective ways to look for happiness is by focusing on the good. Even if you are having the saddest day if you choose to look at the silver lining you will begin to feel better.
Experiencing true happiness does not depend on others. Happiness is an emotion within you, you have control over it. The only way you can achieve this state of mind, is by living a more conscious and meaningful life. Being conscious about your lifestyle choices, self-care, spending time with your loved ones, and doing what feels good. Practising a conscious living will give you a lot of reasons to be happy about yourself and your surroundings.
Should you trust happiness will find you?
What if happiness never arrives even after you have been quite patient? The thing about happiness is that it’s within you, all you need to do is pay attention to various kinds of goodness happening around you. Happiness appears in different forms and often people overlook it and continue to focus on the negative. Letting happiness find you is about viewing things broadly. When you begin to have an open outlook towards life, you will begin to notice the little things that accumulate to bring you the desired happiness. You certainly need to be patient to notice the little joys that fill the big picture. Like buddha said, “happiness is a journey, not a destination”.
How to spot happiness?
When was the last time you spotted a butterfly? One should always consider that happiness is not a constant state, it’s ephemeral or at least time flies when one is happy. Doing something, being engrossed into your activity may spark your joy, however, always keep an eye on the bigger picture. Notice what about this activity makes you want to keep at it. It could be anything – spending time with your grandchildren, preparing family’s favourite dessert, or simply spending time sitting in calmness. Find activities with similar background so that you experience happiness in places you expected the least.
Types of Happiness
As mentioned in philosophy there are two distinction of happiness
- Hedonistic – The hedonistic approach of happiness is about pleasures of life. It is mostly associated with doing what makes you feel good, self-care, enjoyment and feeling content with the pleasures of life and things.
- Eudaimonic – On the other hand, eudaimonia is about living a life with meaning and feeling good about it. It is associated with living up to personal goals, fulfilling responsibility, working towards long-term goals, and looking out for people. For instance, volunteering for a cause will bring you more joy than watching your favourite TV show.
While the above two types broadly explain the stark difference between types of happiness, the other common type of happiness that people experience are –
Happiness is a complex emotion
Emotions hold a lot of complexity. It is not simple. One can never experience happiness if they have never cross path with sadness. Sadness is an integral part that makes one value happiness. While it might be a state of bliss, however, being happy can never be the end state. The journey towards experiencing happiness is more fulfilling than the whole process. It is important that you have acceptance about what you have and embrace it while you still can.
How to practice happiness?
When you begin to incorporate things that you enjoy doing. You will find yourself humming a song and getting along with the day. Here are few ways of practicing the goodness of feeling happy.
- Smart goals – Set smart goals that can be achieved effortlessly. When you set a goal that you love, you will have something to look forward to everyday. It will add a sense of purpose to your life.
- Practice gratitude – When you begin to appreciate the good things in life, you attract goodness. Finding one thing to be grateful for daily is a great exercise to build positive outlook towards life.
- Enjoy the moment – Be more present in the moment. Notice the little things that make you happy. When you appreciate the good in the present, you can let go of the worries about the future and the past.
- Reframe negative thoughts – Easier said than done. But you have to make the effort to focus on the good and have acceptance about the incident. A negative thought could be about the past or the future, you have to choose to see the good instead of focusing on the bad.
Strike an emotional balance
Happiness is a recipe that requires balance of all emotions. Focusing solely on being happy will lead you into a narrow mindset. When you open yourself to new experiences you will find those lasting moments of joy that you will carry in your memory for the rest of your life. And these memories can be reminisced over a cup of tea with friends and family.