Happiness

How often do you think about what makes you happy? Not “how often are you happy?” but how often do you reflect on the things which make you happy and try and learn something from that?

If you’re anything like me, which you probably are, then the answer is “almost never”.

Yet it’s only by doing this kind of reflection that we can understand happiness and try and make our lives better.

One of the most limiting parts of our culture is that we learn what happiness looks like not through self-reflection but through watching other people. Whether that’s watching Love Island and imagining ourselves looking like or being like the people on it, or it’s watching YouTube vidoes about some guy in LA with the most uber-minimal life you’ve ever seen, it’s the same: “This person does this stuff and is happy. If I did that stuff I’d be happy too”.

We’re all guilty of this. It is at the crux of our mediated lives.

So take some time to think about the things that make you happy. Think more on what it is about those things that you love, that (to steal a Marie Kondo-ism) sparks joy in you. They can be big or small: one of mine is simply watching the birds on the bird feeders outside our living room window. Why does this make me happy? Because I love nature and the natural world, so I want to get into it more.

Today’s a good day to think about this.