Is happiness all that it’s made out to be?

A question

Did I get you started reading this article?  I’m sure if we did a vote on it, most people would say ‘Yes, I want happiness in my life and yes being happy would make my life perfect’ (or something like that).

What do you think? Is happiness the be all and end all?

A response

Now, I’m not going to go all silly on you and say ‘No’, well I am actually but not an absolute ‘No, happiness is not the be all and end all’.  Happiness is after all subjective and therefore we each have our own perception about what being happy is.  I’ve mentioned happiness in a previous post where I mention Acceptance+Future Thinking=Happiness. While that phrase is perhaps a simplistic summation of what happiness is, it does make a profound point.  Maybe it should have been written in a more personal way:

You acceptance of your circumstances and life

Plus

Your ability to keep looking to make your future better

Equals

Contentment and happiness

But why ‘No’

Why did I suggest that being happy is not the ultimate, the perfect place to be in life?  Well, we can’t all be happy all the time can we?  I don’t think so.  In fact I would go so far to say that sometimes we need a little unhappiness in our lives to help us appreciate the happy places we come to.

Personally

Ok, I’m gonna get personal now so please don’t laugh or ridicule me!

I was married once and had been for 17+ years, I have three children from that marriage but we went through some dark times shall we say.  Also, I had business problems and felt let down by others just when I needed them the most.  Needless to say I was pretty low and stayed that way for quite a while.  But all the time I kept telling myself that Acceptance+Future Thinking=Happiness.  However for a couple of years I didn’t really accept my situation, I tried to though.  And I suppose it was the ‘trying’ to accept that meant I was finally properly able to accept my situation.  I got a job which was hard and very stressful but it helped me out of a time of depression and feeling sorry for myself.  Now I have a job back in IT which I love. I adore love my three children and they love me.  I have a roof over my head and just enough money in the bank to pay my bills and maybe the occasional treat or two.

So?

So what is it about the above section that explains my happiness?  Is it because I have a good job now?  Is it because I love my kids and they love me?  Or is it because I accepted my experiences as ‘life’ and I now have the same attitude of acceptance.  Ok, life is good yes, but I think that happiness comes from within not from without.

Does this mean I have to suffer to be happy?

No! Just take a reality check on your life, accept your life for what it is ‘right now’ but strive to make things better.