Happiness is Doing What YOU Love

I’ve been seeing subjects like ‘how to be happy’ & ‘finding happiness’ bandied about quite a bit lately.  And many conversations with friends & family have centred on achieving personal happiness while trying to mesh with family & societal definitions of happiness.

But the definition of happy can be as unique as there are humans on this earth.  It is as individualistic as our DNA — what activities we enjoy, where we like to live, what job we like to do, who we love, what children we have, how we treat people, animals, nature . . .

At 54½ years old, I can say that I am happy.  I haven’t always been able to say that.  There have been years of pain as an ugly duckling, angst as a moody teenager, strife of a bad marriage, fear as a single mother, agony of working for money rather than love of job, heartache from the loss of someone dear, frustration of being misunderstood, loneliness of being abandoned, self-hate of hurting a loved one, defeat of abuse, . . . need I go on?

Of course there have been times of great joy — feelings of awe at the beauty of God’s world, unconditional love for my sons, delight in a dog’s play, achievement of good work, love from other humans, a wonderful connection with animals & nature.  But that doesn’t mean I felt ‘happy’ with my life as it was holistically.

I lived too many years trying to make others happy — to keep the peace.  I often shunted my gut feelings based on the rules of unknowledgeable family, society, or church.  Of course, this didn’t make me happy.

I had to learn how to listen to myself — how to trust my feelings.  I had to examine my beliefs — determine the validity of their source.  I had to admit failure when I chose the wrong path.  I had to be willing to change — & sometimes that change cut to my core.  And sometimes I angered other people when I fought for my beliefs & would not bend to theirs.

I continued to search &

learn &

change until . . .

Now — I am happy with my life.  No, I’m not rich materially & still have many goals in life.  No, you may not be happy with my life.

But, I am happy making stained glass projects, I am happy collaborating with a friend exploring wood framing, I am happy with my gentle dog & cat, I am happy visiting my children, grandchildren, & friends, I am happy reading, I am happy writing & drawing my thoughts down, I am happy with my emotional health, I am happy on the Isle & away from the city, I am happy designing & playing with colour [hmm, can you tell?], I am happy gardening — planting beauty in flowers & food in vegetables — I am happy doing what I love.

They say you can’t love someone until you love yourself.  Well, you can’t love yourself until you’re happy with your life — happy doing what you love.

Simply A Dawne Thought

Advertisements