Stop Looking for Happiness

GSTS

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“Stop looking for happiness; it’s with you the whole time.” Which wise man said that? Well, it was written on a fortune cookie. Besides the lucky numbers, the fortune cookies do offer some real wisdom…at times anyway. It wasn’t really anything new to me when I read it. I had realized it long before reading it on a fortune cookie, but realizing it doesn’t rid me of the unnecessary frustration and dissatisfaction. The words written down here will also be a reminder for myself when I’m stuck in the pigeonhole of unhappiness.

When I felt especially unhappy was after I got my MBA, starting a new career and a new life. I felt I lost the goal in my life. I tried to chase after new things to accomplish, hoping new accomplishments would bring me happiness. The whole time I was chasing, I never stopped to really appreciate the life I had and the success that I had accomplished by that point in my life. What I cherished was the things I could never get and the things I had already lost. I can’t say I’ve completely changed, but at least I’ve realized it by now, so I can work on it.

Life is fine the way it is. But we can’t accept that. We need to make it better without realizing how it is is good enough. I’ve realized that the things I used to want wouldn’t necessarily make me happier. Living in a big house wouldn’t. Driving a luxury car wouldn’t. Owning expensive jewelry wouldn’t. The pleasant feeling at the moment of taking possession of those things doesn’t last long. I am already happy with the life the way it is. This is not an empty affirmation. This is how I truly feel. Don’t try to change things or try to “make things better”. Why not just enjoy them the way they are? Be receptive, and you’ll feel happier.

Life is too short to not enjoy it. Don’t stress over trivial things. When you step back and look at the big picture, those little unpleasant moments that you have experienced in your life evaporate like they never existed. When you overpaid for an airplane ticket, when you had a flat tired, or when you heard someone make an unpleasant comment about you, you were so wrapped up in that situation that you felt angry, upset, or depressed. Have you noticed that once those moments are past especially after you give it some time, when you look back at those moments, you don’t feel as affected as you did? So why allow yourself to get stuck in those moments and why can’t you step back and realize the negative feeling will dissipate?

Those are the things I have learned from my personal experience, but it doesn’t mean I don’t get bothered by those moments when they happen. However, realizing these things helps remind me what’s the right attitude to have and what’s the right thing to do. I still keep reminding myself to stop looking for happiness and that it’s with me the whole time.
 
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The things in our life have nothing to do with our happiness. It's easy to see happy people who have very little and unhappy people who have everything. What causes our disappointment and pain is when we want things we don't have, or when we get things we don't want. It's how we view our life that makes the difference. Desire for one thing or another is not a problem. It's desire that we can't release that is a problem. It is the fulfillment we can't find that makes us restless and unsatisfied. We have to take personal responsibility for our happiness. When we do that, we're likely to find out we can be happy anywhere and at any time and doing all kinds of things.
 
A

artistry

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I think happiness is encouraged, if you can laugh. Laughter is essential to happiness. It is great medicine, it can heal. Laugh at things that may not be funny. Laughter is infectious, it is a great thing to do. Laugh and your happiness can grow.
 

OhioTom76

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I'm trying to let go of some things, but I have a few issues with people in my life where I still want some closure and feel I will never get it. The problem is it's directly tied to a place of employment and a job I really liked, and the people who I'm seeking some closure with signed NDA's and are unwilling to give me any information as to who's side they were really on.
 

GSTS

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I'm trying to let go of some things, but I have a few issues with people in my life where I still want some closure and feel I will never get it. The problem is it's directly tied to a place of employment and a job I really liked, and the people who I'm seeking some closure with signed NDA's and are unwilling to give me any information as to who's side they were really on.
Would getting the closure change the outcome? Would it make any substantial difference in improving the situation other than make you feel better? If not, you'll just have to try your best to let go.
 
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I think most of us have times when we are looking for happiness. There are always things there ot be happy about if we really look. Even in the hardest of times, I think there is much happiness around, if you can have your eyes open to it.
 

bneil

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There are tmies when we might be so down and we feel that we have never been happy and we search for happiness. All we got to do is resort to God and ask his help and guidance so we can be happier.
 

zararina

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It was like saying that we can find happiness within ourselves.
I think having a simple life and being optimistic about life can help us be or feel happy. As others say, happiness is a choice.
 

bneil

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One key to be happy is to be contented with what we have and being generous to everything that comes to our life, we must thank God for even the simplest happiness he brought us.
 

GSTS

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It was like saying that we can find happiness within ourselves.
I think having a simple life and being optimistic about life can help us be or feel happy. As others say, happiness is a choice.
That's the idea - to find happiness from within!
 

GSTS

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One key to be happy is to be contented with what we have and being generous to everything that comes to our life, we must thank God for even the simplest happiness he brought us.
Couldn't agree more!
 

Spiral

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Yes, life is fine the way it is and it is fine to improve and fix things that we do not like. You can always enjoy the nature, the blue sky, stars etc. but, frankly, you do not need to enjoy a flat tire. The problem is when we are attached to our desires.
 

bneil

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Couldn't agree more!
Thank you for agreeing with me GSTS ;) I think life is just too complicated that most of us don't understand, which we should just accept and be happy with what God has given us.
 

carlvennt

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Happiness is something which is within us and we are solely responsible for our happiness or sadness.It is something which cannot be purchased from anywhere it have to be brought out from within.We can be happy by making others happy and satisfied.
 
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MoreSuccess

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I think this ties very closely to trying to "live in the now". Often when I'm feeling unhappy, it has nothing to do with the present moment, and rather having regrets about the past (which I can't change), or worrying about the future when I've already done everything I can towards creating that future the way I prefer. If your mind is always living in the past or future then you are never simply enjoying the present. Happiness in the present cannot be obtained from the past or future, it's a state of mind as you pointed out GSTS.

This doesn't mean we should avoid thinking about the past or future, as we do need to plan our lives and learn from our mistakes. But it does mean that when you're not in that planning mode, you should be fully present in what you are doing. Be fully in the endless stream of moments, and find happiness within them, as you will never have those moments again.

As we've discussed in another thread, meditation is a good way to practice being in the moment and get your mind away from that worrying about past and future. However you can also achieve that state of mind outside of meditation if you choose. I think this is increasingly difficult in today's world as we are constantly keep our mind hammered at by external stimuli.
 

GSTS

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To stop looking for happiness and to be receptive also means to be content. I have to keep reminding myself until I can fully internalize it. I can't seem to be content with my job. I like it, but after I've done it for a while, I want something different. I feel that if I have something different to do, I'd be happier. Then I have to stop and remind myself since I truly like what I do, I should be content. Keeping looking for the thrill in new things is not the source of happiness. Most of the time, it's not the external factors that cause unhappiness. Sometimes I feel like life is a battle between me and myself.
 

MoreSuccess

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To stop looking for happiness and to be receptive also means to be content. I have to keep reminding myself until I can fully internalize it. I can't seem to be content with my job. I like it, but after I've done it for a while, I want something different. I feel that if I have something different to do, I'd be happier. Then I have to stop and remind myself since I truly like what I do, I should be content. Keeping looking for the thrill in new things is not the source of happiness. Most of the time, it's not the external factors that cause unhappiness. Sometimes I feel like life is a battle between me and myself.
I figure that wanting something different doesn't mean you can't still find some enjoyment in what you have now, they aren't mutually exclusive, agreed? I look forward to retiring from my job but I also like my job.
 

GSTS

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I figure that wanting something different doesn't mean you can't still find some enjoyment in what you have now, they aren't mutually exclusive, agreed? I look forward to retiring from my job but I also like my job.
That's exactly what I need to do. Find the enjoyment in my current job. Appreciate it and be content.
 

Ryan Doug

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Happiness is not found in money, successes, and fame. There are wealthy people who make suicides because they do not find the real happiness. Even a simple appreciation of life can bring happiness. Happiness is just within a reach, we just need to be thankful about what we have for a day and be thankful for a chance to live each day. Contentment is the first step to happiness. Happiness is everywhere. It is just a matter of good acceptance of life.
 

Rea

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Manifesting a happier life is not dependent on others nor should we allow ourselves to be. When we find other people’s happiness to be essential to our own (happiness), I believe it won’t last that long, and we will see ourselves to be chasing for more so it won’t be considered true happiness. “I’m happy when you’re happy”- we hear this all the time (my mom never ran out of it…and I’m very thankful). But then again, are we truly happy when we know deep inside that there’s something that could fulfill that ultimate desire to live happily (ever after)?:)

I have always believed that happiness is built and not searched for. Although we cannot change the fact that there are situations that would cause unhappiness and discomfort, we do have total control of how we view things. If we learn how to regard things or situations on a non-judgmental state (the good or the bad), we’ll feel a deeper sense of well-being, we’ll be more harmonious with our inner selves, and we’ll be able to see circumstances with an open-mind. When this skill (mindfulness) becomes a part of ourselves, then no external factors can ruin our inner peace which of course would lead us to a happier and more meaningful life. ;)