The Quest for Happiness!

The quest for happiness! I’m in! Everyone seems to be on it, so yep, me too!!!

What does it mean to be on a quest for something? I suppose it means I am on a journey, a search; looking for something I don’t already have or something that has been lost. I’ve always possessed the skills required for detective work, being observant and analytical, so I should be good at this!

So then what is happiness? What am I searching for? Is it a tangible, hidden treasure buried deep within the earth that I need to travel far to uncover? I don’t often like to travel far from home, so I sure hope not. Will I know it when I find it? Will it be labeled? And once I find it is there the risk someone may try to steal it from me? Do I need to keep it hidden so nobody knows I have it?

Or is happiness an intangible feeling associated with excitement and fun? If so, am I really on a quest for the things, people, or places that will bring me to those experiences? And how many do I need to collect before I am done searching? I often have long, tiring days. I’m not sure I have the time, energy, or money to add more “stuff” in my waking hours that can make my life more exciting.

Well this is all seeming a bit hopeless to me now. Maybe this isn’t a quest I’m cut out for. How will a person like me ever find happiness?

The good news is that happiness, as I have discovered, isn’t any of these things! I don’t need to travel far to find it and once I’ve revealed it to myself there isn’t a person or situation that can take it away from me. Sure happiness can be experienced through excitement and fun but can also survive through moments of calmness, boredom, and even those that may be unpleasant.

What is happiness? Where do I find it? How do I get it? How do I keep it?

Happiness is a choice that I make, everyday! It is a contentment within myself and only I can control it. It is hidden within the decisions I make to do the “right” thing and strive to live my life with honesty, integrity, self-control, courage, love, kindness, gratitude, and humility. It isn’t only available to those with a lot of free time or money or even good health. We can all fulfill this craving regardless of our circumstances. The quest doesn’t require I travel on an archeological dig to ancient ruins. Instead it requires a trip deep into my heart where my soul’s true desires lie, waiting to be exposed to the world around me. Happiness is not my reaction to luxury items, exotic vacations, wealth, popularity, good health, or even laughter. It is an action I take knowing, at the end of each day, that I have done all I could to truly feel alive! It is a quest I will continue pursuing all the days of my life. Allowing myself forks in the road that I will meet with a gentle patience, and forgiveness.

The quest for happiness! I’m definitely in!

The Little Things

The recent death of a family member has me thinking a lot about life lately.

As I listened to friends and family reminisce about him during his memorial service, the term “bucket list” came up, a list of things you want to do before you die.

I don’t have a bucket list. I’ve never even thought of having one, until now.

I envy the people who know what they want to do, where they want to go, and people they want to meet. My circumstances in life have often changed quickly and drastically, so keeping a list without crossing out and changing items would be close to impossible, and I may run the risk of feeling like a failure.

Instead, I’ve decided to try to focus on the many wonderful things that happen in my life daily; the people I encounter, the personal growth I experience due to facing and overcoming challenges, and the many opportunities I’m given to try to make the world a better place.

I’ve started this Blog to document these parts of my life journey. It’s something I have always wanted to do (write), which is why I have titled it “1st Check Off The Bucket List”.

I’ve had some incredible little experiences, with pretty huge outcomes and worthy of mentioning. That’s not to say I won’t find myself traveling the world or the country with my family one day. But my highlight won’t be on the destination, it will be on the path that gets me there. And I hope to write about all of it here.

There is lots of joy to be had in simply living our lives!

“Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things.”
~ Robert Brault