In my post last week, I announced that my Word of the Year (WOTY) was happiness, and the reasons for choosing that particular word. You can read about it here if you’d like. I’ve been thinking about the things that bring me happiness, and I thought that first, perhaps we should look at the meaning of happiness. When I think of happiness, I also think of Joy. Is there a difference between happiness and joy? I set out to do some googling to find out. From what I can find, it seems that joy is extreme happiness, which is pretty much what I thought.
I found the following meaning for happiness on verywellmind.com.
Happiness is an emotional state characterized by feelings of joy, satisfaction, contentment, and fulfillment.
While happiness has many different definitions, it is often described as involving positive emotions and life satisfaction.
Happy is a subjective feeling, and I’m sure, can at times be difficult to recognise. I’m basically a happy person, even though there have been times in my life that I’ve questioned whether or not I am happy. Happy doesn’t mean that you want to be doing a happy dance all around the place. Other words to describe the state of happiness are excitement, joy, gratitude, contentment, optimism. For me, a feeling of general contentment and peace equals happiness.
The following signs of being happy keep coming up in happy articles. I’ve added my thoughts on these signs.
You feel satisfied with the way your life is turning out – My life is definitely not turning out the way I had planned. That’s not to say that I’m disappointed with the twists and turns my life has taken. I’m actually very satisfied and content with my life, even though it’s different today than I thought it would be when I was younger. The fact that my life is not the type of lifestyle that many would choose, doesn’t concern me at all.
You have more positive than negative feelings – I do have my moments, when my negative feelings take over, and I find it difficult to think of anything at all positive. I also have my moments of sadness, but I’m sure that even through the negatives and the sadness, I’m still basically a happy person.
Feeling that you are living the life you wanted – I find this one a bit difficult. I’m definitely not living the life I wanted. The life I wanted was taken away from me fifteen years ago. However, after all that has happened in my life, I can honestly say that I’m living the life I want today and the life that I love.
Feeling that the conditions of your life are good – The conditions of my life are good for me. We live off the grid, and I’m aware that many people wouldn’t like the conditions that entails, but it’s not at all an issue for me. I’m in a situation that enables me to work by choice and not because I have to for the money. Working is about more than money for me and is one of the good things in my life.
Feeling that you have accomplished (or will accomplish) what you want in life – I do feel as though I have accomplished much of what I wanted in my life when I was younger. Having run a successful business for 34 years, there have been many accomplishments along the way. Combine that with the accomplishment of raising three really great children. These days, I’m happy to leave the big accomplishments to others, as I plod along, doing my own thing.
The more I think about happiness, it occurs to me that a peaceful life is a happy life. I definitely have a peaceful and happy life, so even though I’m not deliriously happy every day, I think I’m winning in the happiness stakes.
Here’s the link to my other blog if you’d like to check it out – Tracking Down The Family
What does happiness mean to you? I’d love to hear your thoughts and promise to reply to all comments left.
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