Sometimes happiness can be hard.
In a world where we’re always searching for uncontrollable laughter, utter contentment and soul-fulfilling satisfaction, I often find myself wishing there was a set path to happiness.
Is there a recipe for perfection, a faultless balance, or a flawless mixture and an answer to all of my questions? What I have found over the past few months, is that the real answer is — who the (insert colourful word) knows?
Unfortunately, like most things in life, the science to happiness is not quite that simple, for if it was, the world would be abolished of sadness.
So, what is happiness?
I’ve been asking myself this question for as long as I’ve had the capability to contemplate, so in order to find a well-rounded answer, I decided it was time to ask someone else.
I asked family, friends, acquaintances, strangers and professionals from all around Gippsland what their idea of true happiness is, and I was overwhelmed with responses. The depth of the answers I received filled my heart with warmth, so I’ve decided some just needed to be shared here too:
—The people I surround myself with, feeling vulnerable, connected and beautiful.—Hearing the perfect song.—The tingles you get from a first kiss.—The carefree feeling of having no worries and loving where and who I am surrounded by.—When I reflect on life and realise how lucky I am.—Making others feel happy and bringing people joy.—The feeling when you find your new favourite song and play it on repeat.—Being surrounded by good people.—Feeling complete passion and fulfilment.—A time where nothing else matters except the moment.—Family.—Embracing every moment fully and with an open mind.—Noticing the beauty of a sunset.—Accepting that you are not always going to be happy.
Through searching my hardest for happiness, I realised that happiness is not something that can be ‘found’, as Lisa, a psychologist from Mind Matters Gippsland says, ‘being satisfied with your life can actually be more about accepting [a] full range of emotions… rather than fighting to always feel happy’.
Happiness is subjective and you already have the ability to achieve it, all you have to do is believe it.
So, if I were to mop up all my thoughts into a logical, scientific conclusion I would say — happiness is unpredictable, uncontrollable and no amount of perfection can create it or achieve it, so it is quite the contrary of science.
However, I have realised that happiness is not a single moment, feeling or thing. It can be all of these things or, evidently, none of them, and that is the reason why it is so special.
Happiness is letting go of labels, expectations and disbelief, and accepting that life will have its ups and downs; this doesn’t mean you can’t still find true happiness throughout your journey.