BY SIMONE SMITH
We speak of happiness as this unforeseen, abstract concept that at times seems impossible to achieve. One of the reasons that it is impossible to achieve is because we externalize it and see it as this unforeseen, abstract concept. We attach happiness to material objects and then wonder why when we have attained the material object of our desire; we still do not feel the happiness that we anticipated.
It is important to understand how happiness operates in our individual lives. It starts by us asking questions about what in our lives has made us feel genuine happiness. Is happiness a walk first thing in the morning? Is happiness a glass of wine after work? Is happiness snuggling up with our loved one on a cold winter day? Each one of us has our own idea of happiness and these ideas can change as we move throughout our lives. This week I want to take a look at how to understand happiness in our individual lives. This understanding will allow you to embrace your moments and capture them whenever you can.
Let us take a look at life. Dr. Pninit Russo-Netzer (2016) expressed the idea of looking at life like a camera. When negatives occur, we are to develop from them; we are to capture the great moments and if the shot does not turn out, take another one. I like this analogy because this is how one can develop their own idea of happiness. We know that life is not always going to be butterflies and rainbows; we understand that there is going to be some pain involved; yet many of us do our best to escape these moments not realizing that these moments are how we understand happiness. If you do not experience pain, it is impossible to experience or understand its counterpart. The one thing we must not do is dwell on the negative. Get from it what you need and keep moving forward. We can do this by strengthening our psychological immune system. How do you do this? Well, a start is to focus on your strengths, build on your competencies and pursue well-being.
Focusing on your strengths is a great way to find out what in life makes you happy. Your strengths are what are great about you. This is why people say to do what you love in life; find a career that will not only highlight your strengths, but also bring you satisfaction. This takes us to the next part which is building your competencies. Once you know your strengths, now you can build on them. This will allow you to discover how far you can go; all the while you are doing this happily because you are actually living your life the way that you want to. I hope you are noticing that this happiness that I am having you discover, has nothing to do with the external world; this happiness is intrinsic in nature. It is learning more about who you are. Now that you have begun building your competencies, you can pursue your well-being. Your well-being is how your happiness will be seen by others. You know when you see that person who seems to glow; they have a skip in their step and it seems like they are always smiling. These individuals have gone through the steps to discover their happiness. This does not mean that they do not experience harsh times; it just means that they are able to see these times for what they are and move forward.
This topic is abstract, and it will take some more time to really piece through. I will do this for you on my new radio show premiering on Carib101 Radio, Hear 2 Help You. I look forward to sharing more with you Toronto. Be easy and let us start creating our happiness.