Friday, March 28, 2014

What We Need to Be Happy

If you were to write a list with all the things you need to be happy, what would you put on that list? While the list may vary from person to person, it is often interesting to see how many dependencies people put on happiness. Naturally, the answers will vary from a loving relationship to financial independence, to being in good health, not having to work etc.

Often times we observe that the more we need to be happy, the less happy we actually are. Why is that the case, you may ask? It goes back to the question of dependencies. The more you make your happiness dependent on certain things you need to have in place in order to be happy, the less you're likely to achieve it.

If you wake up every morning thinking that you'd be happy if only you'd have that new exciting job, you're depriving yourself from being happy right now without that job. Or if you believe that you need that new house to be happy, you're actually telling yourself that you won't allow yourself to be happy without the new house. In other words you're acknowledging that you're unhappy. The same is true for all the other dependencies we've identified for happiness to materialize.

If we can detach happiness from these dependencies and make a conscious decision to be happy with or without the things we have on our list, we'll in fact not only allow ourselves to increase our level of happiness, but also open ourselves up to discover other things around us that add to our happiness.

"We are no longer happy as soon as we wish to be happier", Walter S. Landor

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