|When you read this piece, remember, that I base it on the fact that readers have the basic comforts of life -- food, shelter, clothing, and at least a minimum of discretionary spending money. When I think about the Haitians, their immediate thoughts are how to find food and shelter; they aren't thinking about sunsets or gardens. There can be no happiness unless you have the basic comforts of life.
WHERE CAN I FIND HAPPINESS?
What is happiness and how does one go about finding it? Since the dawn of mankind, we've searched for this answer. Some folks spend their entire lives searching for something or someone who will make them happy, but they never find it because happiness is not a destination or an end goal. In life, happiness is the game; not the final score.
It's a mistake to waste a large portion of your life seeking that one "thing" that'll make you happy, as if it was the Holy Grail or the most important thing you can find. There are so many more important issues in life than a futile search for something that you already have.
We've all made bad decisions that we live to regret, but I see it this way; life is like an old country road. We can choose to travel that rough gravelly road either riding the hard board of a buckboard wagon seat or traveling in a Rolls Royce. It’s our choice to make.
Sure, bad things happen to good people too, but it’s how you react to adversity that determines whether you'll become a victim, wallowing in self-pity, or be a winner who works through the bad times focused on your life goals. Happiness is not something you can buy or win in a lottery. The old saying that "money cannot buy happiness" is true, especially for those who believe that wealth equals happiness. Human nature will, after all, prevail. Once you have what you thought would make you happy, you'll soon become bored with it because there’s always something else, something newer and better out there. As long as you have money, you will not be happy until you possess the latest gadget or the newest version of things. There is no material object that can make you happy for more than a short time. Waiting for your "ship" to arrive or hoping to win the big lottery is a huge waste of your life. We’ve all heard or read about the "Lottery Curse" where so many lottery winners end up in rehab clinics, broken in mind and body with no friends and hopelessly in debt.
In 1998, William "Bud" Post won a $16.2 million lottery in Pennsylvania. His brother tried, unsuccessfully, to have him killed for the inheritance. Mr. Post lost all his millions through gambling, drinking, and drugs. He spent it all. When he died a few years later he was living off of his Social Security checks. To learn more about lottery nightmares simply Google "Lottery winner horror stories."
Happiness is not a matter of how many things you have, nor is it a condition in life where you've reached a state of constant euphoria. Rather, happiness is freedom from the negative stresses caused by your own thoughtless actions. Happiness is being content seeing yourself attain sensible, achievable goals in life. Happiness is as simple as watching the sun rise or set over a body of water. Happiness is surrounding yourself with those you love and who love you; who see each other's flaws and ignore them. Children, pets, flower gardens, poems, and the aromas of coffee brewing and bacon frying are but a few of the many "things" provided by our Creator, yet so many of us are blind to these gifts.
Isn’t it ironic that the very things people think will make them happy such as; money, drugs, sex, fame, and religious cults are the very things that cause the most misery in the world. Old Abe Lincoln once said: “People are about as happy as they make up their mind to be.” What a wonderful jewel of wisdom. I carry it with me at all times.