So many people, when asked, will say their life goal is to be happy. Come to think of it, even the Dali Lama said it, and he is pretty high up the food chain.
It sounds lovely and oh so honorable, but it’s almost as though we have developed an obsessive relationship with it. Happiness can be illusive, and when we pursue it, we are often left feeling full of self judgement. It can make us feel flawed.
So where does happiness come from? We often believe happiness comes as a result of something outside us. Our accomplishments. Relationships. The success of our children. Money. A new house.
The irony of it all is that happiness originates from that mass between our ears and from our hearts. And it is available to each of us, whenever we choose it.
‘Trying’ to be happy can feel inauthentic. Chasing happiness can leave us unfulfilled and miserable. We say things like – this isn’t fair. Or I don’t deserve this.
Our mission (if you choose to accept) is to awaken to the concept that life just is. Life is supposed to be challenging. There are supposed to be bumps in the road. And it will always be a 50-50 venture.
You are not supposed to be happy all the time!
Life was never meant to be all ‘rainbows and daisies.’
Think about this. When you expect your life to be a mixture of the positive and negative, you are no longer shocked when the negative shows up. And when you expect it to be there, it doesn’t come with as much drama.
I don’t want to sound like Debbie Downer here, but suffering is not anything we can escape. It is a part of the human experience.
When things go sideways, take comfort in the fact that nothing has gone wrong. You don’t have to feel happy about it. But if we open to the challenge instead of wishing it wasn’t there, our path out of Dodge can be easier to navigate. And hey, you might find a little pleasure in that.
When times are good, learn to take it all in. Pause and say ahhh, this is what joy feels like. Practice experiencing positive emotions and they will sit ready for you, whenever you want to experience them again.
Happiness is not something to have, it is something to experience. Dance with it when it is there and be at peace when it fades, knowing you can always choose it again.