We spend so much time chasing happiness, we resolve that it’s something tangible. The horrible truth is that you can’t hold it, can’t wish for it, can’t buy it, because it’s a state of mind. It’s a choice.
“Happy when” is a killer to “happy now”
How many times have you said:
“I’ll be happy when…I meet the right person to marry...I finish school...I get that promotion.
How silly does it sound reading that? I’m sure you’re thinking that if it was that easy, everyone would make that choice. Well, not everyone knows that it’s choice to make. For some, even though they do know it, they’re skeptical. But it is that easy.
How has this been kept a secret? It hasn’t. Happiness is a state of mind. It’s your perception of what makes you happy. Which is exactly why my idea of happy is different from yours.
Too often we focus on getting to the finish line of being happy that we don’t focus on making our “now” happy. Choose to be happy in the moment. Be happy with the progress you’ve made, be happy with the person you’re with, be happy where you are.
We grow what we water.
Don’t water the negatives in your life that are keeping you from being happy. Focus on all those little things that make you happy. For instance, it can be as simple as being happy that your spouse loves you, works hard for you, loves to have conversations with you and rushes home at the end of the day to be with you. How can that not make someone happy? But if your focus is on those long hours they put in at work away from you, that conversations are mostly about the topics they’re interested in, that they took the long way home to avoid traffic, aren’t you just looking at things that steal your happiness.
What you focus on is what you attract.
I know, it’s so cliché to ask you to look on the bright side. But the reality of it is, that if we train ourselves to do just that, have we not just added to our happiness? Didn’t you just say you’d do anything to make your “now” happy. It’s that easy, finding the happiness in everything. Once you change your view, you no longer chase happiness, you just are happy.
It could be Walt Disney’s perception due to the amount of money Disneyland makes. Maybe it’s because kids are so entertained by the simplest of things. Possibly it’s because parents can take a break and not have to entertain their kids themselves. Maybe, just maybe, it’s because you’ve now shifted your view from being in the real world with real problems, into a world of fun and fantasy where your problems don’t exist.
I’m not saying live in a fantasy world, but by all means, shift your perception. Change how you view happiness. It doesn’t have to be elusive or far away. It can be right now.
I’ll leave you with a prayer we say every night with our kids to teach them gratitude and how to be happy in the moment.
Thank you for another wonderful day.
Thank you for everything you’ve done and everything you continue to do.
Such as putting a roof over our heads.
Food in our bellies.
And love in our hearts.
It may not have been a wonderful day, it may have been a long tough day, but being grateful that we had one more day alive, is enough to make us happy about it, whether good or bad. By the same token, we may not live in a mansion, but we have a home to come to, a bed to sleep in, food to eat, and a family that we love and love us back.
Sometimes it’s the little things in life that we forget about, that make us happy. Like a light switch, just switch your perspective and you’ll find, you’ve been happy all along.