That prams and art are not mutually exclusive.

Is Happiness on your To Do List?

Happiness seems like a lot of work. Like checking the weather forecast, daily we check our emotional wellbeing “Are you happy?” and often the answer is a monosyllabic ‘Meh …’ Slightly cloudy with a chance of rain.

Perhaps we forsake our happiness because we feel that happiness should be outwardly visible, or complex: a new car, a new baby, a promotion. Each morning I log into Facebook and update my status. I try to think of a witty update about my very simple, very domestic life at home with 3 kids. I never write “I am happy”. What if I did? Would my FB friends wonder why? Would they defriend me for being smug?

Putting my own happiness forecasting aside, happiness seems to be about an inner peace, a closing off of the outside and only registering immediate comfort. A hot cup of tea. A really well written book. A sunny room in the middle of winter. Not needing nor wanting for anything else but what is already before us in that moment.

Perhaps happiness is the hot cup of tea: the cup that needs to be drunk and enjoyed in the moment it is still hot.

“There is no duty we underrate as the duty of being happy.” Robert Louis Stevenson

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Does happiness come easily to you? What moments make you happy?

14 Responses to “Is Happiness on your To Do List?”

  1. Maxabella

    I guess I don’t think of happiness as something to pursue, I think of it as something that just is. I expect it to just be there and most of the time, there it is. Sometimes three come along at once.

    Even when I’m stressed out or tired or over it or just plain down, I still feel that happiness is there, lurking. Waiting for the right moment to tap me on the shoulder and tell me how easy it is to turn around and kiss its cheek. x

  2. Anne @ Domesblissity

    Hi Karen. I don’t think I make a conscious decision to be happy. It’s nearly ‘forced’ upon me by my children. Even tonight, there were little bouts of jealousy between my two kids. It was the cutest little thing and it made me so happy. I get so caught up in the day to day stuff and sometimes dwell on ‘poor me’. I think it’s more ‘real’ to identify those happy moments in your life for what they are rather than trying to be happy all the time. There’s moments when you need to feel afraid, sad, angry, etc. Great post Karen.

    Anne xx

  3. Megan @ Writing Out Loud

    My daughter asks me – and everyone else around her – every day, “Are you happy?” and I love being able to say “yes” without hesitation. For me, that’s my daily check.

  4. Ink Paper Pen

    I think the older I get the more I realise that happiness is about acceptance. Fighting life and going against the flow makes for more anguish, less happiness.

    The hot cup of tea is a great analogy, Karen. How often do us mothers sit to drink a cup of tea while it is hot? Funny how you begin to appreciate the little things, whenever my mum makes me a cup of tea and insists that I drink it hot, I feel incredibly grateful and savour the moment. I guess that is happiness. Another fabulous post

  5. Lorraine

    mmmm a cuppa while it’s hot. Simple things done easily and time to enjoy them. I think sometimes our world encourages us to look for the big, glossy and whammy options, but in the shadows, gently just being are the real treasures that enrich us and satisfy. For me, happiness is a gentle and slow burning state that relates to how I am with me, rather than anything much that’s happening beyond me.

    A lovely discussion to start up for us all. Thanks, Karen!

    PS Gill: My Mum does the same thing. Kettle boiled and I am instructed to sit, drink and focus while it’s steaming. Maybe it’s an older Mum thing to try and right years of personal deprivation!

  6. MultipleMum

    I am crap at happiness talk. I reckon I go okay but don’t ask me to define why. It is why I don’t do ‘grateful’ with my sister. All those little things, I notice them and appreciate them, I just don’t need to tell the world about them. Living in the now. Being mindful and having appreciative inquiry. Those things make me happy. Like a well written book and a hot cup of tea in a warm room in Winter 🙂 x

  7. vanessawith3

    I lost sight of happiness last week and it really threw me. I am definitely a glass half full girl and don’t seek out happiness but notice it when it is absent. I always know that it is not far away and keep appreciating my life until it settles back onto me.
    But no, I never consciously ask myself, or assess my mood.

  8. Michele

    Sometimes I feel like happiness means everything is perfect. When I think like that, happiness eludes me. You are right – it needs to be about focusing on the moments. A perfect breeze, a good conversation – things that will lead to an overall sense of happiness because you aren’t over-thinking it.

  9. Catherine

    Maybe it’s a matter of semantics but I don’t think about ‘happiness’ much. I mostly yearn for contentment. Happiness feels somehow frenetic to me. I simply want a joyful quiet inside. All right, I used joyful which is extreme happiness so I don’t know what I’m talking about! I do know that, for me, it comes in very small, peaceful ways. And I do see it- almost every day- if even only in the second it takes for a hummingbird to go by my window, stop, and look in. Which one just did.

  10. Kymmie @ a day in the life of us

    Oh happiness… I gave this lots of thought not long ago. A friend had his wife leave him out of nowhere. And he questioned happiness. He asked me “Are you happy?” I realised I was very happy. But there are aspects in my life I’m not happy about. Big difference.

    Great post! xx

  11. Kimberlee

    My daughter and I have been discussing happiness as a choice lately. I think sometimes we need to decide to be happy… And not because of an external factor, but maybe in spite of an external factor or due to lack of some external factor. She has yet to embrace the idea of being happy for no real reason. I am still trying to convince her to dig down and find, if not happiness, at least some sliver of gratitude.

    I think this is a great topic to blog/discuss.

    I hope some day you *will* put “I am happy” as your status. 🙂

  12. Am I Happy? | Living Thoreauly

    […] Is Happiness on your To Do List? ( #gallery-1 { margin: auto; } #gallery-1 .gallery-item { float: left; margin-top: 10px; text-align: center; width: 33%; } #gallery-1 img { border: 2px solid #cfcfcf; } #gallery-1 .gallery-caption { margin-left: 0; } […]


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