Happiness is a crazy word. I mean, human’s are literally obsessed with it. Just try googling “happiness” and have fun sifting through the billions of opinions on the topic.
Happiness is something we often feel we should have.
Happy. How we feel we should be.
So, which is it? Is it something to have? Is it something to be?
The Declaration of Independence was written to protect our right to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
Seems sort of important, then, right? If, supposedly, we are all racing around pursuing happiness all the time, we should probably know what it is we are so fervently seeking.
How do we know when we have found it? or when we feel it? if we aren’t completely, utterly, relentlessly certain we know what it is?
I know what happiness is.
I know what it looks like. What it tastes like.
What it feels like and sounds like.
The way it moves inside me and around me.
I know happiness better than I know anything.
I’m surrounded by it, sustained by it, guided by happiness.
Happiness bursts inside my soul like tiny tulip buds in springtime. It dances across my irises when I delight on sights of dunegrass, people holding hands, or a halfway painted fence.
I know happiness. And it knows me. Through and through.
But, it wasn’t always this way.
And, when I started defining happiness for myself, it really helped me to start with what it is NOT.
What Happiness Is NOT
Happiness, well the kind I am talking about. This sort of happiness is not the fleeting kind.
It’s not a one-night-stand kind of happy.
Not the arbitrary release of serotonin in the brain.
Not the conditional satisfaction in the stomach when things go right, that quickly dissolves when it all goes wrong again.
Not the peace-after-the storm happy.
It’s peace during the storm.
The kind of happiness I know. The kind of happiness I teach.
It’s not dark chocolate, hugging puppies and sunny days sort of happiness…
Although those things can be great reminders.
Happy anchors, even.
No, the happiness I know.
The happiness I hope for you to know.
It’s something different.
Something much grander.
The happiness I know. It’s not something you find, it’s something your learn. Something you create.
And, once you learn this art, your life will never be the same.
What Happiness IS
I wish I could just point.
Point towards a summer moon.
Point at a couple dancing in a silent room.
Point at a child playing in a sprinkler and say, “Look, there. That is happiness. Go and see!”
I can point you towards happiness. But, I can’t actually point at it.
The happiness I know.
It’s something you learn.
Something you learn in your mind, in your heart, in your cells.
It’s something you keep learning until one day you wake up and you just know.
This is happiness
The deep well of joy.
The deep well you have because you dug it up yourself with the help of fleshy angels.
It’s that inner glow. The unrelenting heat inside that elevates, that penetrates everything in your external world with light. With jubilee.
Like a heart full of helium.
The happiness I know. The happiness I teach.
It’s like falling in love with yourself.
But not on accident, on purpose.
Diving headfirst into love with yourself. Profound, abundant love.
It’s remembering the magic of the universe.
The magic in a firefly.
The magic in a broken bone healing anew.
The magic in how the darkest moments always end. How our hearts can split and mend and get lost and remember and hurt and celebrate.
This kind can’t be shaken.
It can’t be lost like it can’t be found.
Like you are.
It’s in that connection.
With one another.
It’s being connected to the universe repeatedly and effortlessly like everything known and unknown were all balled up and put into a penny in your pocket. Because it is.
Everything is you and you are everything.
There’s no sparkle quite like the glitter in the eye of a soul who sees no separation between her and the universe.
This is the happiness I know.
This is the happiness I teach.
It’s already here.
You just need to keep reminding yourself until you remember.
Until you can go to bed and remember a bit easier each morning.
Until you stop forgetting altogether.
It’s not actually so tricky.
It’s just the universe telling you about your own constitution.
That you are love.
Pure, 100% love.
Remember that and you’re home.
That’s all it really is.