Tuesday, September 05, 2006

The Keys to Happiness

What is the secret to lifelong happiness? My Hubbs seems to think there are 11 essential elements, and Ridley adds one more. Both are interesting perspectives to be sure, and contain some pretty good ideas and essential truths. That being said, I'm not so sure that spinning rims and thick gold chains really add to happiness, but that's just me. ;)

So anyway, this got me thinking about what I humbly percieve to be the keys to happiness, and here's what I concluded:

1) A loving support network - Being surrounded by people who love you unconditionally, and who actually know who you are (the good and the bad), is an essential ingredient to being ha

2) Contentment in all circumstances - Sure, there's always stuff you'd want to improve about life, but finding something, anything, to celebrate and be happy with in life definitely adds to one's feelings of joy. Think like Winnie-the-Pooh, who always seemed to find something to be happy about.

3) Hope - This may be in the form of God or some deity, or it may be the promise of better things for tomorrow or next year or eternity, but having something or Someone to hope for and pursue is vital to happiness.

4) Consistency - Everyone has principles and beliefs, and I think that acting according to one's beliefs rather than contrary to them, is important for internal consistency and for feeling happy.

5) Identity & Sense of Self - To be happy, it is also necessary to embrace yourself and the unique qualities and gifts that you have to offer the world. There's no other you! Finding this appreciation for one's own value and contribution to humankind is essential to helping them find happiness in this world.

I think that the keys to happiness are pretty much intrinsic, with the exception of #1. Though the more superficial and material things like money, or a nice home, or vacations definitely can help people feel happier, I think that those should be considered more as tools and means to bring about happiness, rather than generators of happiness in and of themselves. But that's just me.


Speaking of happiness, a new movie is coming out either later this year on Dec. 15th, called The Pursuit of Happyness. It stars Will Smith and his son Jaden, and is based on an autobiographical book by Chris Gardner of the same name. You can watch the trailer here, and the movie looks like it'll be one of those tear-jerker, tear-at-the-heartstrings, emo-heavy flicks. I can't wait! =D


Wynn said...

Well, from reading your blog for a little while, I figured you're a Christian. And so it kinda surprised me that surrendering your life to Jesus wasn't a key to happiness along with knowing what He thinks about you. I don't think the whole "God as you perceive him/her/it" will make one happy, though I'm sure in some cases it has made a difference (like for my alchoholic dad). I guess I figure that Happiness depends on Happenings. I'm looking for Joy depending on Jesus. Some days I don't find it, cause I'm looking for what I want when I want it, or I'm looking at the happenings too closely.

Mrs. Loquacious said...

You're absolutely right about my relationship with Jesus, Wynn. For *me* personally, my hope is in Christ alone, and my identity and sense of self also come from Him; my consistency is with His word and my contentment is based on Phil. 4:11 (when Paul speaks of how he has learned to be content whatever the circumstance, whether in need or having plenty).

However, I think that many who haven't come to know the Lord have still found their own brand of happiness, and this post attempts to cover the topic of happiness for those readers who don't share my faith, whilst still attempting to be as true as possible to my own walk with Christ.

I hope that addresses your question/comment adequately! =D

Natalie said...

Just wanted to say what a wonderful post in every way shape and form. As someone who believes in something but hasn't defined it, I did apreciate your all inclusive definition. I of course know for you it is Christ as I read your blog and it is evident but it is nice to see that you can see happiness in similar but different ways for others.

Mrs. Loquacious said...

Thanks! =D I appreciate the encouragement and feedback very much. Why is comment moderation enabled on your blog, Natalie? You can use the word verification thing to help block spammy comments, you know. My need for immediate gratification from seeing my comment posted is not fed by the comment moderation, which is why I ask! ;)

Natalie said...

you have a point. I'll upgrade.