The Happiness Or Joy Choice
Quick, answer this question. Are you sure happiness is the answer?
I'll assume you answered yes, otherwise you probably wouldn't have kept reading. I'm going to question this notion that happiness is what you're really after. See here's why; happiness is a fleeting feeling. Happiness is often triggered by outside situations and experiences and can fade as quickly as it comes. That sudden rush of emotion fills you up and once the rush is gone it leaves you feeling empty, deflated, and longing for more. Joy on the other hand, is a whole different creature in itself. It is created from something inside you, joy is a conscious chosen state of being rather than a situation or experience happening to you outside of your own willpower. While happiness is a fleeting feeling, joy sustains.
I can't even tell you the number of times someone has told me they feel as if they were drowning.
It's as if the people who need joy the most are lost and wading in the middle of the ocean hoping to wash up on an island but ignoring the boat meters beside them that could paddle them to shore.
I see their pain though, it is hard to want to keep swimming when an island isn't even in sight.
If all you are surrounded by is the deep dark blue, how likely are you to keep treading. It's no surprise then that many of us make the choice to drown or sometimes what is worse, just float along.
It's not the only choice though, instead of wading around hoping happiness will appear, swim towards joy.
Funny enough, sometimes the ability to stop drowning is often as simple as just standing up and recognizing the water wasn't that deep. The same reason why Dr. Brogan says, "anti-depressants can work but only if you believe they will."
It starts with our beliefs and continues with our choices. If you want to live joyously you have to first decide you will create your own joy and then continue to make that decision over and over and over again, let it sustain, and let yourself be.