“And they lived happily ever after…..” That’s the fairytale. But life is more complicated than any storybook and when it throws up challenges and heartaches, happiness can seem like an unreachable dream.
“The darker the despair, the brighter the joy.” ~ Carolyn Hughes
My own experiences of abandonment, abuse, addiction, depression have all played their part in making me feel sad and despondent at one time or another. But faith, love, gratitude have helped me to find happiness in the darkest places. Learning to take each day at a time, and appreciating each moment in time reminds me that life is too short for regrets or fear. Happiness, joy and laughter are to be enjoyed today.
“Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.” ~ Mahatma Gandhi
Happiness is all about you. Only you can make yourself happy, so if you’re relying on something else to give you peace of mind, think again. Society persuades us that we can be instantly and permanently exhilarated and delighted – Buy this. Do that. Eat this. Drink that. Wear this. Look like that. We are bombarded daily with the promise of never-ending pleasure. That’s gratification. It’s not true happiness.
Inner contentment can be a fleeting feeling or a deep-seated emotion. Most of all it should be an established attitude. Living joyfully and peacefully means accepting imperfections in yourself and others.
Happiness is appreciating what is right, not lamenting what is wrong. It’s being thankful for what you have, and not being envious of others. It’s looking forward to the destination, but enjoying the journey. So stop waiting for happy days. They’re here already!
“The purpose of our lives is to be happy.” ~ Dalai Lama.
A word of warning if you are looking to others to make you happy. They can’t. Of course you can enjoy a wonderful relationship, but it can’t be dependent on someone else’s happiness. Neither can you depend on someone else to provide you with total fulfilment. It’s not their responsibility.
Your happiness comes from within your heart. Only you hold the keys to your heart. And only you hold the keys to your ‘happily ever after’.
i find happiness in knowing that others feel happy. especially when overcoming extreme hardships. i have never known what happiness has felt like, either. because when i think i’m happy, i realize i’m in a state of mania which is, apparently, a state of delusion. so i don’t know how to define what’s real from what is not. i’m so glad for you. i hope i attain what i find as happiness. or what i think it is.
ps, i know i am in charge of whether or not i become happy. i am beginning the battle of “recovery” from mental health and from life long emotional damage. i hope that i am feeling happy just knowing that i have finally got the right medications i need. and use these as tools to be able to attain what i want.because i feel happy about this. and grateful every single day i wake up. no matter what i am feeling. even if i’m having another mixed episode. i remind myself that this is better than before. anything has to be better than that.
Thank you for sharing such honest and open comments. I’m glad that you have moved from the crisis into the recovery stage. It is hard I know to confront and overcome emotional trauma but it is worth it. Taking the right medications is a way to be kind to yourself. They will help you while you move on to a better, more settled mind. Keep strong 🙂
Thank you so much again! For both comments. Really feels good from someone who has gotten past it and learned to be comfortable with the simple pleasures of life. I find so much humor in all situations of life. Unless I’m in really hopeless places. I find humor all of the time, but it’s such a unique and strange type, I have no one to share it with. Only two people I knew truly understood it, because they had the strange thought process that I do. It’s so rapid that I get epiphanies from not even words, if that makes sense. But thank you! Another anxiety is now I have no health insurance. So I can’t have outpatient therapy and so far there’s no one I can go to without insurance that will continue to write my scripts. Yay to me for finally being able to get the help I wanted, but it was too late for insurance. But you’re very wonderful : ) And none of my words are ever empty. I feel a lot of love for you. And I don’t know why.
Getting to a place of serenity isn’t easy. There will always be obstacles both practical and emotional, but the important thing is to take each day as it comes and know that life will get better. Just don’t give up your dream.
thank you! i really wish there was a way to message someone on here hahaha because i’m kind of in a bad place right now. i think my body and mind is sort of deteriorating due to isolation. and in a lot of pain so this comment is kind of messed up. i can’t really focus on anything
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Thank you for the link 🙂
It made me happy to read about happiness! Thanks, Carolyn!
I love coming to your blog, Carolyn! I especially liked when you wrote, “Your happiness comes from within your heart. Only you hold the keys to your heart. And only you hold the keys to your ‘happily ever after’.” So often I see people thinking that this or that will make them happy when it happens, and the truth of the matter is that it won’t. Thank you for sharing from your beautiful heart 🙂
Thankyou Susan for all your encouragement and support! It took me a long time to realise that I was responsible for my own happiness!
all good things must come to a beginning
Thank you for commenting Katrina. That’s an interesting statement! 🙂
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Thank you for reblogging! 🙂
The other thing that goes along with this, that it is better to be happy alone than to be with someone negative, abusive, and/or hurtful.
Wise advice Sally. Thank you 🙂
I came through Twitter and thanks for the follow 🙂
Yes indeed, happiness is actually a state of mind. When and if we want to be happy, nothing can really stop us. We just want to feel happy 🙂
Thanks for sharing. 🙂
Hi Harleena, Great to meet you and thank you for your comments 🙂
Happiness like most everything else in life begins with a choice! Great article!
Thank you Denny for your support and encouragement!
I once told a young lady I was dating that she didn’t know how to be happy. She disagreed, of course. But it’s so true that happiness is a choice. And no matter how great things were for us and between us, she chose almost daily to focus on something negative. (we’re no longer together, lol)
Love this one Carolyn.
You were obviously so much more mature than she Ron! Thank you for your comments!
Hi Carolyn….this is so true.. I spent most of my life looking to find my happiness in others, and it failed over and over… Thank you for sharing this!
Isn’t it wonderful to discover that we don’t need to look for others for our happiness Penny. Thank you for your comments.
Lovely post and very true. And not forgetting contentment. Think people sometimes go searching for something when actually they are content, but think they should be expecting great drifts of surging euphoria all the time.
I blame the advertising man. We have a ‘want more’ culture.
You are so right Pat that people can be lead to believe that they want more, but they probably have all that they need right at that moment!
I like to tap into the joy of the Lord, that is what gives me strength to overcome my own obstacles.
What a wonderful way to happiness Olga!
beautiful and inspiring post. When I think of what it takes to be happy, I am reminded of the beatitudes from Matthew 5. The word “blessed” we see there is actually most strongly related to ‘happy’
Remembering the beatitudes is a wonderful way to be reminded of happiness. Thank you Matthew!
Another great post – thanks for sharing!
Thank you Estelle!
Wonderful post. We do need to rely only on ourselves for our happiness. Take care.
Thank you Cathy!
I absolutely love reading your posts. They ring true to my heart each and every time. I am working on my happily ever after ! Thank you 🙂
Thank you Terressa and I wish you all the best with you happily ever after!
beautiful outlook.. a way of travel and not a destination! I have stopped thinking I will be when… i’m just happy and take things as they come !
That’s a great way to be Elizabeth 🙂
Great post, Carolyn. This is a journey I’ve long been on. One of my favorite saying that you might also like is an old Jewish proverb that says: “There’s nothing so whole as a broken heart.” I don’t know why but it’s always brought me comfort.
I love that quote Ruth! Such a ring of truth!
My goodness but did I ever need this now! Your words are beautiful and really mean alot to me – thank you so much!
That is such an encouraging comment Debbie. Thank you!
It’s interesting, whenever I see a commercial for some product, I usually can’t help but laugh these days. The notion that getting a car or something like that could make me happy just seems so absurd to me at this point that I can’t really take advertising seriously. Then again, I probably err on the side of austerity — my walls have always been completely white. 🙂
White’s good 🙂
Beautiful post, Carolyn, and you are so right…you can’t depend on someone else to make you happy because you are the only one who can do that! Loved it!
Thank you for your kind comments Sherie 🙂
Beautifully written article. Thank you. I agree, we must not look for others to make us happy! It is within us and that is what counts.
Our happiness is ultimately within us Alexandra and you are right – that’s what counts!
Happiness begins inside each of us; looking to someone else is sure to let you down, unless it is God himself. 🙂 Learned that lesson long ago! The joy of the Lord is my strength. I puts everything into perspective for me… Great post!
That’s a lovely quote Norma ‘The joy of the Lord is my strength’. Thank you for sharing!
So true Carolyn, lovely post, All my best, Ruth 🙂
Glad you like it Ruth!
Another beautiful post, Carolyn! I love your quote, too, and your last line sums it up perfectly, “Your happiness comes from within your heart. Only you hold the keys to your heart. And only you hold the keys to your ‘happily ever after’.” Thank you so much!
Thank you Lisa 🙂
Beautiful post and very true. Happiness is within each of us. We have to choose it every day even in difficult times. Thanks for sharing.
Thank you for your comment. I appreciate that!