The pursuit of happiness
Can it be achieved or are we doomed to chase the illusive carrot of happiness forever more?
Doesn't it seem ludicrous that lasting authentic happiness can be perceived as a mere philosophical ideal rather than an attainable and achievable goal? I suppose each answer brings yet more questions.
Let Happiness Be Our Ultimate Pursuit!
If a full life of never ending happiness and contentment seems a bit too out there for you, then why don't you rather commit to a life that ensures happiness (and/or the pursuit of it) should be behind all you do?
Sounds legit, but by default, isn't that what we are all trying to do anyway? We are all seeking what therapists call The Positive Psychology to Happiness.
Aah... The Great Paradox of Life
Sandy works hard, so she can get paid and spend her salary on things that will she be able to find her own happiness? But when the middle of the month comes she sees very little cash in her bank account and now she regrets buying those clothes and going for that expensive dinner. She wishes she had rather saved her money and put it away so she can one day retire rich. loves his girlfriend so much and knows that she is the one, but he is always so suspicious of her daily activities and who she is with. He checks her phone and gets angry with her when men look at her. He hates it when she is having fun with her girlfriends.
Tammy likes to make people happy so she is always ready to help out. Although she already has a demanding job, she must still do this for her husband, that for her child and this other thing for her neighbour. There is hardly time for all her chores, never mind time for herself. Everyone pulls her in every direction and she can't stop it. Do Sandy, Bob and Tammy seem happy? Are their efforts in pursuit of the own happiness or are they sabotaging it? Can you relate to these stories?
To find happiness in life, or at least your perception of happiness is more than likely a moment in time caused by an outside stimulant. Examples of "happiness" : Going to a party; doing drugs; having great sex; doing something daring (like bunjee jumping).
These are events, when done right, will cause excitement and leave you feeling happy about the experience.
Can you see the fatal flaw? Think about it.
In order for you to keep the happiness streaming in, you will have to keep re-creating these stimulating experiences.
This may not seem like the worst thing in the world, because its fun and exciting to chase adventure.
We see There are two main issues with this thinking.
1st. Once the moment of fun and excitement is over, will you be happy going back to your normal, everyday life?
2nd. What if you try re-create your amazing experience, only to find that it's just not the same. It doesn't blow you away like the first time you tried it. What most people do is they try "Out-Do" the first time. They party harder; take more drugs; have more sexual partners, etc etc.. You get the point.
Again, ask yourself : "Will I be happy and content with my life when this experience is over?".
Can you see that the cause happiness must come from within first?
Outside Circumstances That Make Us Un-happy
Work stress, lack of time, bad relationships, money problems.
If you have encountered any of these issues, Just another issue to take you further away from happiness. Or is it? There is no denying that these are real issues, but are you seeing what they are trying to tell you? If you partner disrespects you, should you maybe respect yourself more. If you are always running out of money, are you maybe not pursuing your dream job or valuing the money you currently have?
Please don't think that I am being insensitive to life's struggles and complexities. All I am stating is that if you are not finding happiness and joy in your life, then self-reflection and introspection are a great way to find some answers to the things that may be bothering you.
If the destination is happiness, then the journey is self-discovery.
Thanks for reading,