One of the first steps you can take in adding more happy to your life is realizing happiness isn’t a destination. It’s all about the journey.
Growing up, I don’t think anyone would have ever used the word happy to describe me.
Those were all words I heard, either to my face or behind my back, describing me.
I can remember thinking “someday, I’ll be happy.”
It wasn’t until Captain Cavedweller entered my life that I began to embrace happiness. How could I not? He is a truly happy guy. Although he can be shy, he’s also very comfortable in his own skin and is one of those people who is so easy going and laid-back, not much rattles him. One of the thing I have always loved best about him is his ability to not only laugh, but to make others laugh as well.
There is a lot of laughter at our house. It’ hard to be anything but happy when you are genuinely laughing.
Still, it took me a while to figure out that happiness wasn’t a destination I was trying to reach. It’s not a place on a map that can be found by carefully planning a route to get there. It’s definitely not somewhere that can be found by plotting to get there.
Happiness is waking up one day and realizing you only get one chance at this life and you better make the most of it.
It’s about looking for the blessings in each day instead of seeing the burdens.
It’s about embracing the joy from the simplest things and letting yourself fully live in each moment.
Like anything else, it takes some effort and practice to switch your thoughts from wherever they’ve been lingering to happy ones.
If you don’t know where to start, here is one thing that helped me: figure out what things make you smile, even for just the briefest moment. Maybe it’s a photo, a song, a story, a joke – whatever it is, find something that makes you smile and let yourself fully enjoy it. Then do it again, and again.
The other day I was scrolling through my newsfeed on Facebook and someone had posted a how-to of making a little bird out of bread dough. Seeing that photo made me smile and I took a moment to acknowledge the happiness I felt at seeing it.
Does it sound ridiculous? Maybe.
But sometimes happiness is all about the ridiculous, the crazy, the silly. The things that makes us happy are all different. So go on, find some little something that brings you a moment of joy and linger there a while.
Each Monday I share my thoughts on happiness in my own personal Happiness Project for 2014. Feel free to post your thoughts or comments on happiness.