Happiness is an Espresso Shot
When I asked Justin Cox 🌮 to write for Happiness Weekly I thought it would be easy. I enjoy writing and I thought his concept was really cool. When he let me know my date of publication I began to think about what I would write. No ideas were readily popping into my head. At first I chalked it up to being distracted, but after several weeks of brainstorming I began to feel a little concerned. Was I not happy?
I consider myself a positive person and my friends would say I am fun to be around. So, it felt strange that I couldn’t figure out why I was having such a tough time with something as simple as an article about happiness. Thoughts sprung into my head about possible causes: my hectic schedule, feeling overwhelmed at work, and being disconnected from my friends due to working for an international faith-based nonprofit. To make things a little more frustrating I regularly interact with volunteers who make passing comments about “how tough it must be to live where I live and work where I work”. All of these are contributing factors but I wanted to go deeper and think about what happiness actually means to me.
I think happiness is often a superficial concept that is carelessly thrown around. People complain about not being happy with work or their current situation or that happiness should be your end goal for everything. But what does it really mean? The definition is “feeling or showing pleasure or contentment”. I think this definition just raises more questions. What is the time frame for “happy”? Is it a constant underlying feeling or a temporary emotion? It finally clicked for me when I started to think about happiness as energy; like fuel for your soul.
Like everyone, I have great days and not so great days. Recently I have been having a disproportionate amount of not so great days. My work requires me to constantly ensure others are happy and it often feels like I sacrifice my own temporary happiness to make it happen. At the moment it’s tough for me to tell if I have that underlying happiness or contentment. For now my happiness is contained in breathtaking sunrises and sunsets, body surfing a perfect wave for 20 seconds, a quick phone call or text from a friend, and 15 minute jam-sessions squeezed in between life’s daily chaos and challenges. I think the underlying state of happy can exist in us without us knowing, it’s like the feeling of getting a good night’s sleep. However, I think it’s important to notice the little espresso shot moments of happiness that wake us up and keep us going each and every day.