I have a note on my phone with thoughts on happiness and I have no idea where it came from. I have been trying to figure out how it arrived on my phone and what they’re doing there since the 17th of January when I apparently created the note - maybe they're from a podcast? I don't know.
But the more I look at these few thoughts, the more it has made me wonder about how I would personally define happiness. Not in terms of achievements, but the actual feeling of being happy.
What does happiness mean to you? What do you know it in your heart to be?
The formula for happiness is not the same for everyone.
Appreciation. Love. New experiences. These bring happiness – and it’s contagious. The more happiness you have, the more it spreads to those around you.
I know sometimes genuine happiness can feel a million miles away – life is pretty stressful. But maybe what makes it even harder is that we don’t know what exactly it is we’re trying to achieve, kind of like trying to make sense of a map when you don’t know your destination.
We work so hard to achieve happiness, but is that idea of happiness a construct of our own making? Or is it about "once I own this I will be happy" or "once I get this job I will be happy" or "once I lose 10 pounds I will be happy"? These are life achievements, and they may add to our happiness but they will not complete it.
I don't mean what will a happy you physically look like, I mean what will it feel like. Will you know it when you achieve it? Will you recognise it when you feel it? What does happiness mean to you? What do you know it in your heart to be?
Remember that feeling. Hold on to what you know in in your heart to be, so that even when you lose sight of it, you always know what it is you’re trying to make your way back to.