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Genuine Happiness

By Edited Sep 21, 2015 1 4
Happy Boy
Credit: Tyker McCombs

Right now, we have many people of all ages blaming their happiness solely on material items. We also hold other people responsible for making us feel happy or the opposite. If they do something that makes us unhappy, we are blaming them. These two ideas are spoiling the contentment of millions of human beings. The concept that happiness is an internal force stems from several ancient religions or beliefs such as Buddhism. However, one mustn't become a Buddhist to take onus for your well-being. Educating yourself on the steps towards vibrant, lasting and true joy is the first step.

Firstly, material things you can buy in a store are all temporary. Your discontent stems from the desire for these material items. The happiness you feel when you receive or buy something is from the relief of a satisfied desire. You don't have to desire this thing anymore, because you have it. And desiring this object is creating unease. Basically, you desiring anything at all is bringing you displeasure. The waiting to get something. The wanting for something. It may seem a bit far-fetched, but you must think about these things. It makes a lot of sense. In modern-day life, most people are just waiting for the next thing they desire to be gotten. Children wait for dessert. Teenagers wait for acceptance. Young Adults wait for money and romance. Adults wait for promotions and more money. Elders wait for happiness. These are not all material things. But they result in unnecessary cravings. Having money, promotions, romance, dessert, etc. is okay. Owning these things or experiencing these things are one hundred percent acceptable. It's just the desire. The thought that you'll be sad without these. The dependence on the idea of owning these experiences and items. These are the behaviors that lead to distress.

Holding others responsible for how you feel is completely wrong. We need to take control of how we feel and stop blaming those around us. Even if they purposely did something to harm us. We can only control how we respond to these happenings. My sister has a mantra she says when she is being effected by someones unfortunate behavior. She says each word per finger "I. Control. My. Own. Happiness." It may sound cheesy but it's important to keep in mind that that's the truth! If a baby is crying in the seat in front of you on a bus. You can choose to get worked up about it. You can get so mad to the point where you want to say something to the parents. You can be annoyed and let it ruin your entire day. OR you can keep in mind that things happen and stay calm. Choose to not focus on it. Look out of the window and focus on something else. Remind yourself that this is a situation you have no control over. There is no way out. You're on a bus. Are you going to get angry and ask yourself the stupid question of why baby's have to cry all the stupid time? Or are you just going to say, hey that sucks for the parents, but at least I didn't miss the bus. It's really hard. I'd be lying if I told you I've mastered this trick. It's incredibly difficult. But it's make a world of a difference. This kind of situation is happening everywhere. We need to learn and teach everyone else the right way to live. The happy way to live. 

More is to come on this topic. I'm still mourning the 5000 word article in which I by accidentally deleted. 



Jun 2, 2014 7:58pm
A good read on a serious subject. I thank you for it. Dennis Prager wrote a popular book entitled, "Happiness is a Serious Problem." His radio show also features a dedicated one hour segment each week called, "The Happiness Hour." His thesis is that "happy people make the world a better place." He also believes the converse is true.

Many philosophies emphasize the elimination of desires as the key to contentment. Others emphasize redirecting one's desires as the key to happiness and contentment, .e.g. a desire to conform to God's will replaces the desire for a better material life.

Something I'm currently pondering is whether or not I actually want to reach a state of enduring contentment... I'm not sure that I do.

Some people believe that in another existence hunger and fatigue will be banished. Doesn't sound interesting to me. Absent the noisy annoying child on the bus, how can one truly appreciate peace and quiet? Absent hunger, how can one anticipate and enjoy a delicious evening meal? Absent fatigue and cold, how can one enjoy crawling into a nice warm bed after a hard day's work exposed to the elements?

I suspect that if we lost longing, we'd fondly remember the days of 'wanting', and of having our 'wanting' satisfied. I'm beginning to think that continuous contentment is not so desirable. Then again, I could be wrong.

Thanks for the article,
Jun 2, 2014 8:35pm
I completely agree with you. We need contrast in our lives to truly appreciate the good things. Without it, we'd all be bored and lost. Like you said, we wouldn't be able to enjoy anything because we wouldn't have anything to compare it to.
Thanks for commenting! More articles to come,
Beatrice Clark
Jul 9, 2014 10:18pm
Enjoyed this article Beatrice, and sorry about your loss. After researching biographies on the Monks, and Desert Fathers and Mothers etc, contentment in your inner being far outweighs the chocolate ice cream cone my daughter might want. If we as a people would begin to teach the truth of contentment instead of the need for the next rung on the ladder, our children would become a content generation. Not driven by some desire they are told they need, they could achieve a peaceful life.
I believe contentment is such an abstract thought to most people, it's inconceivable. That which should be the most desired is misunderstood.
We have been taught as children there are contrasts in everything. Good, bad; lovable,unlovable;peaceful,noisy, etc. There will come a time when there will be no need for that in our development.
I know in my heart contentment is wonderful element of having a peaceful life. Peaceful not boring.
Thank you again,

Jul 12, 2014 9:20am
You are very much so right. Humans alive today who are capable of understanding this philosophy and better yet, are able to apply it to their life are fantastic. But what would be even better is if we taught this from the start. If children grew in this kind of culture where self content just means being happy within yourself. Being grateful you are alive and present. Imagine a world like that. It would be amazing.
Thank you for reading my article!
Beatrice Clark
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