Just before the holidays I was having a rough time at home. Communication was not good, and not being able to have my own place was taking its toll. There was a bit of conflict and the result of all this was that I began to experience a certain amount of anxiety. I don’t mind admitting that I decided to seek help.
I have been through intense counseling at other times in my life. This wasn’t new to me and seemed like the best way to have someone objectively help me review my problems and come up with some things I could do to make my life better.
I only went to appointments a few times, but it turns out that was all I needed. The first few times I spent the hour getting things off my chest. Then, I guess the 4th or 5th appointment, she asked me a question, “does it make you happy?”.
She told me that this is the question that I should ask myself in pretty much any given situation. I realize that the value of happiness is not just summed up in the moment, but that one has to think about whether any long-term consequences will or will not make one happy.
Thinking about how to be happy does not make one selfish.
Happiness is a state of being, a state of mind. Being happy is a decision one makes about how to live life, it is not something that just happens.
I asked myself what I wanted in this life. I have asked that question at various times in my life. I have discovered that all I really want is to be happy. I have also learned that even after losing almost everything, I still have more than enough in my life to be happy about.
What makes me happy?
Spending time with my grand-daughter, feeling her cuddle up to me in the night. Sunshine. Animals. Good books. Writing. Pretty jewelry, which does not have to be at all expensive, and a great haircut.
Flowers, a cold drink on a hot day. Handmade gifts, given and received. Photographs. Long conversations with old friends. A cup of wonderful coffee.
Talking with my son, listening to my grand-daughter, talking with my daughter-in-law. A weekend away from home. Delicious food. Chocolate.
It also makes me happy to help someone. Being there when a friend is needed. Giving encouragement and affirmation. Sharing good news. Letting someone help me.
It makes me happy to be grateful. Letting go of the worry about what is to become of me and instead becoming grateful for what I have, and the knowledge that it is enough. This makes me feel such a peaceful happiness, like sleeping in the arms of a loved one.
Pretty much anything that does not serve the purpose of happiness and love is no longer important to me. I do get concerned about what is going on in our country and in our world because I truly believe that everyone else deserves to be happy too. I realize that everyone has different ideas about what will make them happy and for some it involves justice. I believe everyone should have the justice they need. It makes me happy to bring the awareness of these needs to others, because I believe that the sooner we all work to make life better for everyone, the sooner we can all realize peace.
What makes me happy? It’s up to me to decide that every day.
Your turn now! What makes you happy?