WHAT THE HECK IS HAPPINESS ANYWAY?
Some studies have shown that there are some people that are born with the “happy” gene. Like those prone to alcohol if a parent is an alcoholic or others that come from a family of mental illness or specific types of genetic disorders. Maybe there are those that are born naturally happy and maybe some of us have to work a little harder than others. If you aren’t naturally a Trader Joe’s type of bubbly personality, hey, that makes two of us and maybe that’s okay. And, if you don’t know what I mean about having a Trader Joe’s type of personality, go to one if you live somewhere that has one. For some in the east coast, you might not totally understand the analogy. Trader Joe’s people, from the cashiers to the stock men/women, to the managers and even the food handlers, my GAWD they are ALL super bubbly and simply cheerful about life. Period. I have yet to run into one Trader Joe’s employee that appears glum, down, depressed, blue, sad, mopey, or even gives the slightest impression that they don’t love their life or their job. Now, this isn’t a sales pitch to get you to shop at Trader Joe’s or perhaps model how they train their employees or find out what sort of pill or special cocktail they’re drinking, so we can get some of that bubbly attitude.
Happiness is not only a state of mind or even something that can be tangibly defined. The definition of what makes each and every one of us happy, differs from person to person. A financially rewarding career, following your passion, financial stability, financial instability but following your art, abundantly wealthy, satisfied with what you got, fun toys such as fast sports cars, driving a hybrid and thus saving the planet, a variety of hot babes, monogamy, having a perfectly sculpted beach body, accepting your cellulite or love handles, having a perfect partner, accepting your partners imperfections, philanthropy, investing in only oneself, having children, not having children, and well….you fill in the blank. The bottom line, what makes you happy is deeply personal. Some doctors and scientific research speculate that being happy can also have a lot to do with ones brain chemistry. My personal belief is that happiness is a number of things, a combination of circumstances, genetics, health, environmental conditions, belief systems, education, social status, and economic conditions.
Whatever your history and journey in life, your physical, spiritual, and mental make up is your story. You can own your story or if you are not happy with it, you can choose to live a new one. How, might you ask? Well, there is no magic formula or one dead set solution that would fit everyone. It’s impossible because like finger prints, we all have a uniqueness that no one else has. There is only one you. So, there is no right answer to getting out of your funk and having a better day or simply being more positive about life or finding that sweet feeling of utter contentment. Though, learning practical tools to get you “out of the dumps” is like exercising, it is a muscle that can be trained, as our thoughts can be taught to be redirected. Wouldn’t it be great if we could unlearn all the bad stuff we were taught as a child, all the negative belief systems we were conditioned to believe about our capabilities and ourselves? No one said life would be forever void of challenges, everyone has permission to have a “bad day.” Here, I write about some practical tools that help me and hopefully if nothing else, remind myself while attempting to provide a little pick-me-up for most of us out there just trying to reach a sense of well being and genuine happiness.