The Pursuit of Happiness

Written by: Orion Brutoco

As humans, we all have the right to pursue happiness. What is happiness? How do we achieve it? Where do we go to get it, how does it come to us, or how can we get more of it? For me, I initially thought I could buy it. I thought if I had enough money I would be happy. If I had the right car, lived in the right zip code, had a nice house, all the outside things. But, I realized that happiness doesn’t come from objects, money, or outside circumstances.

I’m 32 years old and I still have the same desire to be happy than I did 10 years ago, only my perspective has changed over the years, on how to achieve it. The pursuit of happiness sounds like an outside pursuit. It can be interpreted as a journey, where one goes to college, gets married, has kids and settles down. Or, it can be a pursuit that happens internally and has nothing to do with outside progress. Just what do I mean? How does one pursue happiness internally?

A pursuit can happen spiritually when one seeks direction from a higher guidance, from a spiritual power, a religious deity, and acts in ways that are in line with their faith. Happiness can come from feelings received from seeking. We may have what I call a “lightbulb moment,” where an idea we have connects with the feelings we experience, and this produces an epiphany. Or, happiness may come from a smile or a laugh, when we relate to something another person says or does.

This pursuit is a trillion-dollar business. Everybody wants to feel good, at least I hope so. Businesses are trying to provide happiness through products, books, and solutions. Some find happiness in destinations, experiences, some find it in gestures and actions, while others may find it through growth from within. For me, I’ve found it through the service of others. When I am serving others, unconditionally, without expectations or conditions, my heart is fed. I want to chase that, to pursue that feeling, of “heart happiness.”

Thankfully, this pursuit is entitled to us all, not just American’s, but all human beings. It is within our core to desire good things, to feel whole, to feel happy, to smile, to laugh, to share memories, and to break bread. The pursuit of happiness lives inside all of us. What is your pursuit? How do you pursue it and which aspects of your life can you eliminate to add more “heart happiness” to your existence?