“Everyone smiles in the same language.” ~ George Carlin
Seriously… what is happiness to you?
It means different things for different people. Still, as also the Dalai Lama said, everybody on this planet is seeking happiness. It is something that unites all of humanity.
Happiness is something that you can’t really chase on it’s own. Happiness comes as a by-product of doing the right things in life. Having the right habits, the right thoughts, the right beliefs, the right decisions, the right actions, the right people around you…
I recently found a very inspiring and thought-provoking definition of happiness given by the great Deepak Chopra which goes like this:
Happiness is the continuation of happenings which are not resistant.
What does that mean? “Happenings which are not resistant.” It means that if you don’t have any resistance inside of yourself or from the outside world, you get a sense of flowing with life. Life becomes supportive and feels effortless.
How can you reach a state of non-resistance? I think the answer is two-fold:
1. Do the Right Things
As I said above: nothing is beats a right way to live. And this simply means that you are doing what is good for you (and for others). It also means that you get away from or resolve what is not good for you. Develop the kind of awareness which makes it possible for you to consciously recognize what is good for you and what not. Doing regular self-reflection is a great way to do this. Self-reflection done right is an opportunity to lead yourself – you become the leader for yourself. You say to yourself what is right for you, and then you give yourself the command of what to do. Then you just do it.
2. Letting Go of Resistance
The second way of flowing with non-resistance is to avoid creating resistant states of mind in the first place. Resistance means that you have a reaction inside of yourself that works against what just happened. It is blocking your energy-flow and maybe it is creating negative thoughts and emotions.
What you could do instead is accept the situation for this moment – not resisting to it – and then go with an appropriate reaction to it. That way you are not polluting your mind with negativity and cloud your decision making process. You have a way to stay clear inside and therefore make the right decision which is supporting you 100%.
This alone presupposes that you develop the kind of awareness, the gap between thoughts, that give you control about your though processes. One key to get there is to realize that you are not your mind, you use your mind.
What Else Leads to Happiness?
Working on yourself and doing personal development is a great investment to have more happiness in your life. You need to grow and you need to contribute and create value for others in order to be truly happy. And happiness is not only a state focused on one single area in your life. If you want to be happy long term you also want to create balance in all your areas of life.
I’d like close this post with a quote from the Dalai Lama again:
“I believe that the very purpose of life is to be happy. From the very core of our being, we desire contentment. In my own limited experience I have found that the more we care for the happiness of others, the greater is our own sense of well-being. Cultivating a close, warmhearted feeling for others automatically puts the mind at ease. It helps remove whatever fears or insecurities we may have and gives us the strength to cope with any obstacles we encounter. It is the principal source of success in life. Since we are not solely material creatures, it is a mistake to place all our hopes for happiness on external development alone. The key is to develop inner peace.”