May 31, 2008

on a good morning...

This morning, while sitting at work all crotchety about the fact that I had an oddly restless night and am still up at the crack of dawn, I was completely uplifted by a post from one of my new favorite blogs, BloggedIn.

A couple of weeks ago, I randomly signed up to get their posts emailed to me (I actually think it was for some sort of contest) with every intention of unsubscribing later on, considering I hadn't ever even read the blog. However, I've been pleasantly surprised by the continuously thought-provoking and inspiring posts that are written by the group of people who blog for that site. This morning, the post I read was entitled, The Pursuit of Happiness, written by Tim - one of the resident bloggers over there.

The entire post was the perfect remedy for how I've been feeling a bit lately. I've been constantly fighting towards finding some sort of perfect happiness and boundless joy, but honestly? I've been failing more than I'd like to admit. Most of the time I feel like failure, because I really do try to be more joyful. I just can't seem to truly relish in it - as much as I used to, at least. I'm slowly beginning to realize, though, that perhaps this is based on my own perspective of how happiness should be, how it should feel. I expect to have that warm, fuzzy feeling, that I am completely and entirely at peace. When I fall short of that, I automatically become grumbly and wonder, "Why am I not finding joy in this moment when I tried so hard to? Everything should be just right, but it's not. Argh."

Of a recent message he heard from J. P. Moreland, Tim writes how the author points out how "many of us are miserable because we have an inaccurate definition of happiness. Most Americans believe, as is reflected in the definition of a recent dictionary, that happiness is 'a sense of pleasurable satisfaction.'” Isn't that so completely true? I know that it certainly is a good description of me, for sure. But then I have to wonder, how the heck can I change? I feel stuck in a rut filled with high expectations and grumpy-pants.

Tim goes on to give four principals to live by, to help gain a more true sense of happiness: develop an attitude of gratitude, learn to forgive, strive to be "other centered", and savor the moment. Savoring the moment is something that I think that I do on a regular basis, but when I really think about it, I tend to over analyze or second-guess the moments I should simply bask in, enjoying what a wonderful life I do have.

Reading that post was a perfect way to start my weekend, even though I may be stuck behind a desk for most of it. As Tim so accurately wrote, "happiness should never be our goal, though it will likely be the culmination of right living and other-centered loving."

Isn't that lovely?

(All I know is that happiness came in the form of a grilled ham and cheese sandwich this morning at 8:00AM. That is pure joy, my friends. Pure, delicious, joy.)


  1. okay so. i heart bloggedin, and i read this exact entry and it really made me stop to think. i, like you, really try to take moments in and be grateful for them and try to really open my heart and be happy about the simple things. god, that sounds ridiculous. whatever.

    point is, happiness isn't smiles and hearts and sunshine. it's the good, the bad and everything in between, it all adds up to happy. at least that's how i look at it.

    and i totally eat grilled cheeses for breakfast too. with kraft singles. oh man.

    happy weekend, love!

  2. "Happiness is a butterfly which when pursued is just out of grasp... But if you will sit down quietly, may alight upon you."

    -- Nathaniel Hawthorne

  3. Wow I love that quote right above me. It's just right on and exactly as I've been feeling. I'm so focused on being happy that I don't do the little things that make me happy. I just I need to stop thinking so much and just DO. Here's to our quest for happiness coming to an end. It'll come to us.

  4. To me, joy and happiness are two different but not necessarily mutually exclusive things. Sometime you have giddy, jumping and clapping joy and happiness. Sometimes you just have quiet, simple happiness. And, really, doesn't that just sound so lovely?


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