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Are you Happy?

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This question gets tossed around a lot in various forms. Are you happily married? Are you happy in your job? Are you happy with your new car? Your dog? Your house? Were you happy with your hotel stay? Your meal at the restaurant?

We throw the question around lightly, and perhaps that’s as it should be. Happiness seems to be a fleeting emotion, as beautiful and temporary as a snowflake. On those increasingly rare occasion when my whole family gathers around the table and we laugh and tease and tell tall tales, my heart smiles. I’d say I’m happy at those moments. Extremely so. These slices of time are precious and I tuck them away in my heart because I know they pass too quickly.

But when someone cuts me off, or I get the cashier trainee–again–or I have to wait for the train en-route to work, I wouldn’t say I was “happy.” Now overall, would I say my life is more “happy” than not? Absolutely. But am I happy at every moment? Um, no.

Perhaps we need to dig a little deeper for the true meaning of happiness.

I found a quote by Helen Keller that I posted by my computer. She is somebody I would have loved to meet. Both blind and deaf, this tough lady overcame incredible odds and accomplished great things. Her courage, grit and determination inspire me. Here’s what she had to say about happiness:

“Many persons have a wrong idea of what constitutes true happiness. It is not attained through self-gratification, but through fidelity to a worthy purpose.”

Now that’s a mindset you can sink your life into. That’s where bone-deep contentment arises, the stuff that’s unaffected by the winds of circumstance. Happiness comes from loyalty and devotion to a worthy purpose.

So, are you happy? To what worthwhile purpose are you devoting your life?

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    The Conversation

  1. diane burke says:

    What worthwhile purpose am I devoting my life?

    Throughout most of my life it has been trying to make others happy and finding my own burst of happiness come from that when I am successful. My son’s excitement at a surprise I gave him recently still lingers with me.

    But true happiness?

    That’s the quiet little peaceful space I find within myself. Whether I’m curled up with a good book or walking on the beach or watching a beautiful sunset (And doesn’t Florida have magnificent ones!) or just enjoying a moment of silence. The me time when I’m not rushing around or doing for others and am just enjoying the company of me.

    And, yes, you’re right. No one is happy all the time. Maybe that’s why we can appreciate it and cherish it and remember it so much when those fleeting moments sit down and stay with us a while.

    Sending you hugs and smiles. Let today be a “happy” day.

    • Connie Mann says:

      Hi Diane–Your description of the times you are truly happy resonates deep inside me. There is a reason you’re a writer. You have such a way with words. Thanks for sharing that inspiring glimpse into your heart.

      I had a very “happy” day. Here’s hoping you got to enjoy a beautiful sunet and some quiet time alone.

  2. Your post made me think about the things that make me happy. A purring cat on my lap or my dog leaning against my hip. A phone call from my children with a cheerful ‘how are you?” My husband holding my hand is at the top. What is my worthwhile purpose? I write the best books I can and am happiest when it comes together.

    • Connie Mann says:

      Hi Barbara–what a great list! Glad the post made you think, too. It’s good to take inventory, I think.

      I agree, there is nothing like the feeling when a book comes together! Happy writing!

  3. A very thought provoking post. It made me stop and think over my life. What worthwhile purpose am I devoting my life to? I have no idea. Seems like I’m just kind of floating about in the ether and doing things as they come my way. I am devoted to my family and my friends, but I don’t think that constitutes a ‘worthwhile purpose.’ I think that’s just devotion. Even though I’m not sure what my life is about, I am happy and grateful for that happiness. Now, I’m going to go ponder my future goals. 🙂

    • Connie Mann says:

      Hi Claire, I’m very glad the post made you think. That’s often what I’m trying to do with these posts. 🙂

      I love your grateful attitude towards your life–and I’ll look forward to hearing about your future goals. I hope you’ll let me know.