HAPPINESS, WHAT IS IT REALLY?
Almost everyone wants it, but most find it hard to describe or define it. It’s more than transient joy, that lasts only briefly. We can be happy for a few hours, a few days, or even a few weeks. However, the joy disappears before you know it.
For this feeling of contentment to last, you need to have certain criteria in your life. First, it is difficult to be happy, content, or to have the feeling of happiness, without having a minimum of conditions. If you have no security in your life, in terms of physical security and financial security, happiness is illusory.
Physical security means that you do not feel in danger in your own home, nor in the streets of your city. One can easily add good health to physical security. People who are sick and dependent on others often have feelings of vulnerability, and their self-esteem drops. In addition, financial security is paramount, because I imagine that homeless people do not find much happiness. They are often victims of theft, violent beatings in their cardboard shelters, and victims of rape. In addition, without the means to eat, we are often forced to beg in the streets or in train stations. Without the security of food, adequate protective clothing, and a home, no one is generally able to find happiness, no matter what. These vulnerable people lack the essentials for a basic life.
Before basic needs are secured, a person cannot begin to think about achieving happiness. Once you feel safe and secure, you have the strength and motivation to think and create your own happiness. To begin with, you have to reflect about what you think will establish a state of inner well-being for yourself and your loved ones, or your family.
You can then dream about projects in order to build your own life. It may mean being hired for a position where you have a job where you can earn a salary to meet the basic needs of life. Becoming independent is an amazing source of satisfaction, achievement, and even happiness itself.
The first job is often the first feeling of having succeeded in doing something huge in your life. We are proud, and that leads to happiness, because we can finally take care of ourselves in today’s hyper-competitive and harsh society.
Once independent and satisfied with your job, you can dream of bigger projects in life. This could mean creating a family, finding a friend or friends, or finding new acquaintances. We are, at this stage, incorporated into society and in a position where we can more easily interact with others. Gradually, self-esteem increases. We realize that the world is full of possibilities. Once you are aware of your strengths or special abilities, you decide which types of activities would bring the greatest feelings of self-worth.
In addition, once independent in life, you realize your freedom to do what and when you want to do it. You finally become master of your own existence. With its independence, many responsibilities follow. You have to decide where to focus your strength to be happy. You have to choose where to focus your time and energy to get the most out of life.
People describe happiness in various ways, but they have a few similar qualities. After successfully obtaining essentials for a secure life, some people find that helping other people in need gives them immense satisfaction and they receive recognition and notoriety in the community.
Then, often people who live in a state of happiness have more social supports, as well as more interpersonal relationships, such as a life partner, a good friend, several friends maybe, acquaintances, or a recognition in the community.
Most importantly, those who live happily have the capacity to accept and embrace difficult life circumstances. It is a great asset to be able to integrate changes with ease.
Loving yourself as you are, including characteristics of your personality, which may be good, not so good, or absolutely negative, depending on how you see them, is a common trait among people who live in happiness. Here I am talking about your traits like integrity, honesty, the power to accept your strengths and weaknesses, including times of emotional upset, impatience, and other imperfections that one would rather not own.
Those who live in happiness often have a characteristic of always wanting to learn more and to know how to be kind and to accept imperfections in oneself. These people resist the temptation to control their future. However, they learned how to adapt to stressful and difficult situations. They understand that life is beyond their control. In addition, solving anxiety-provoking situations brings them pleasure through the pure challenge of solving them.
While one desires to achieve perfection as often as possible, day-to-day happiness is more likely what one feels by personal accomplishments achieved along the path to improvement. In addition, happiness is the contentment one experiences on the path to our progress, our changes for the better, our improvements, as well as the conquering challenges that cross our path. Even if we never reach the state of perfection in the project we are working on, we still enjoy the process.
Of course, our ideas of happiness change radically throughout our lives. The idea of happiness varies greatly between people, and it varies even within an individual during each decade or period of emotional change throughout life.
The ability to trust other people and the strength to be able to laugh at ourselves tends to lead to a life rich in interpersonal relationships, which make us smile in our hearts, make us feel happy or satisfied along our path and our life on this Earth.
As I mentioned earlier, happiness is hardly the same when we’re kids, when we’re obnoxious teenagers, or when we’re young adults in our twenties and thirties. In fact, it looks much more different as we go through the middle of our lives, and in our wisest, most mature years into the autumnal season of our lives.
In the high season of our maturity, happiness changes in quality and it tends to come more from companionship, sweet touches, and shared one-to-one moments. At this time of life, we reflect on our hard work and tasks accomplished, the changes we have gone through and the treasured memories of all our adventures, either alone or with a friend.
What we believe to be happiness is constantly changing over the course of our lives, but the part of happiness that stays constant is the joy we share as we work on our projects and what we have done as we nurture our dear relationships.
When you can tell yourself that you really did your best, this is what I call a successful life filled with happiness. We know that we have lived a good and happy life, when we feel that we have touched most of the people that we have met during our lifetime, leaving them with a feeling of warmth and happiness that has touched their hearts.
In short, this is a successful life with happiness. I wonder how many people achieve this level of intimacy with others, and even with themselves, if only for a few sublime moments of their time on this Earth.
Chutes Cohoes / Cohoes Falls