Happiness – it is such a simple word but such a complex emotion. How would you define this emotion? It seems so fleeting, so transient. There have been reams written on it & volumes spoken about it but this is one thing that needs to be experienced. This emotion evolves & changes shape just as we evolve and grow.

Children find happiness in an unexpected ice-cream cone, an extra ten minutes of playtime, a new friend, a simple toy or just time spent listening to them. Teenagers become a bit more complex – their happiness quotient becomes a bit more expensive & is directly proportional to electronic gifts. Adults have their own yardstick to measure happiness – more money, a better job, a bigger house, luxurious cars et al.

When and how did we start monetizing happiness? Is this change now a natural part of growing up? What happened to the simple pleasures of life? In this mad rush for “more”, we seem to be postponing what should be experienced now. What will be enough? I have noticed that every time, we achieve our self set threshold, instead of resting on our achievements and feeling happy and proud, we immediately up the ante and set new targets, Unfortunately, this is one lesson that we could have avoided taking from the corporate culture.

Now that I have all the time in the world, it has got me thinking. What are the other emotions that are closely linked to happiness? I could come up with contentment & peace. Contented people are so happy. This is not to say that we shouldn’t work hard or try to be better and just be content. I guess if we set realistic targets and achieve them, it would lead to contentment. Not having goals or idling is not an option. It is also true that we reap this emotion more richly if we sow it – make somebody else happy and it comes back to you multiple fold.

It would be such a pleasure to actually re-look at things and find happiness in the small things – the cuckoo’s call in the monsoon, the lovely view from our bedroom balconies, the maid turning up everyday of the month, the weighing scale actually moving south….well, the last two are not small feats. Would it happen only if we become child like again?

I read about this incredibly lovely idea – which I have been meaning to implement but my old enemy, Mr Procrastination doesn’t allow me to. 🙂 The entire family spends 10 minutes on a weekend and writes their ‘happy moments of the week’. This then goes into the happiness jar. After a year, we can see some incredible memories.

Yet another lovely idea is to maintain a happiness journal – which is sure to banish the blues anytime. So. what are your thoughts?



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