Index of Thoughts

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Is happiness genetic or a choice?

My mind wanders a lot!  The other day on the treadmill I was thinking about people and happiness.  I know that everyone is different.  I know that everyone has their own story and journey. But it seems to me that some people are just innately happy and others just are not.  Andy and I were talking the other day about how I am pretty much always happy.  If I am not happy, it's usually because I am hungry or tired!!  He told me that he wished that he could always feel like that.  It was such a startling thought to me.  Was he not happy?  He said that he has to make a conscious effort to say to himself that he is indeed happy but it isn't the same as how I am.

It definitely made me feel a little sad.  I wondered if most people are like this or are more people like me.  I also wondered is happiness based on your childhood or is it just how you were hard wired when God made you.  I have encountered lots of people who seem to struggle with being happy when everything around them is wonderful.  I don't see why they don't choose happiness.

I believe that happiness is a choice.  I read an article once where a hospice nurse wrote about the 5 most common regrets of people on their death beds.  Guess what, happiness was in the top 3!  They all said that they didn't realize until the end that they had the ability the whole time to choose happiness.

I am not sure why I just feel happy most of the time.  I have always remembered feeling this way since I was a child.  I have experienced plenty of loss and heartbreak as a child and as an adult.  I have felt depressed at certain times of my life and have even had to take medication for it.  That type of medicated happiness is better than none but it was like feeling nothing at all to me.  I like to feel so I got off it after 6 months.  But, I am thankful that it did help me to the other side.  I also believe that some people do need it for balance.  I think that depression is your body's way of letting you know that you are not taking care of yourself.  It can mean different things for different people but I think the most common thing is that you are not listening to your inner self.  You either don't honor yourself or you aren't connected with your soul.  I think depression is a way for you to turn inward because you aren't doing it yourself.

There are other people who aren't depressed but still can't be happy.  Is it just genetic?  Is it just who they have always been?  Or maybe they have gotten addicted to the mood of being unhappy?  Some people see life through a tunnel and get lost in that tiny view.  I always say that they can't see the forest thru the trees.  Other people are just bored or content which is still not happy.

So why am I so happy?  What makes me this way?  Maybe I was just born like this?

I think that my genetics has a lot to do with.  I think that even though there were tragedies in my childhood I still received lots of love.  I think that I choose happiness.  I see each new day as a fresh start for something wonderful.  I have the best family.  I have a marriage that is fulfilling and passionate.  I have amazing friends.  I see all these blessings and rejoice in them.  I feel a lot for a lot of people.  I see the world as beauty.  I choose to see the bad things as gifts to me.  I am not afraid of my darkness.

But it doesn't seem like others can easily choose happiness.  Maybe it's all just the way it is supposed to be.  There are Pooh Bears and Eeyores in the world.  But I like to think that everyone has the ability to change.  People change when they have suffered enough says Eckhart Tolle.  I hope that they do but it is their choice.

Is it easy for you to be happy or is it a constant struggle?

Here are 9 TED talks about happiness that are very fascinating.  Watch them HERE!

1 comment:

  1. I know that mood can be genetic, so some are just born less happy. however, I believe you can make yourself happy. Many times it is a choice. The quality of your thoughts, the things (or lack of things) you desire. Some people just really are wired on a lower happiness frequency though, and so it is more work for them to reach our "normal".


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