Welcome to the happiness blog. In case you are visiting for the first time, please do not forget to follow. Each post on this blog has a single objective- to make your everyday life happier.
This is not a blog. It is a work in progress encyclopedia of human happiness. That’s one thing I am absolutely passionate about- what makes us happy as human beings?
What should an encyclopedia have? It should cover the subject in as much detail as possible. As on date, the blog has about 90 posts on what makes us happy. By the end of 2020, if things go as per plan, we will have 150. By the end of 2021, we will have covered 400+ posts on the idea of happiness.
That’s what we are trying to do here. If you are a media publication or a blog owner, please talk about us or link to the blog when you are referring to happiness. Hopefully, you will find something to link to.
So far, we have tried to cover some of the fundamental ideas of happiness. Let us review what we have so far on the expanding happiness encyclopedia.
In this detailed piece, we have tried to break down the definition of happiness and why it is important. A lot of people deride the idea of happiness saying it is not easy to define and therefore, not worth pursuing. In this post, we have looked at what happiness is and why is it important.
No two people are similar completely. This blog has reiterated that we are different and unprecedented and therefore, the paths to happiness have to be different and self-originated. That means your path to happiness has to come from inside of you, because that’s where your happiness resides.
Go-find your happiness, my friend.
Happiness is of different kinds and we experience it differently. Some people may enjoy and create their life around one kind of happiness while others may prefer working on a different emotion, a different feeling.
For example, some people create their lives around fleeting happiness and they are okay with, while others take inordinate amount of risk to create a long term form of happiness. They want to experience in their days and not only on their holidays.
In this post, we have explored happiness of different types, different kinds and broken down the emotion of happiness. If you are interesting in understand the variants of happiness, you should click on the post and read.
This question has haunted the human race for 100’s of years, if not centuries. Especially, the current society does find itself bothered by the query. It is asked repeatedly on forums like Quora in different words and forms.
In this post, we have answered the question in detail. A few people think that money does buy happiness. On the other hand, others feel that it doesn’t buy happiness.
The answer is not that black and white. We need to understand the nature of money and what it does to our lives. Does it buy internal happiness or internal happiness has deeper sources?
We have looked at the meaning money has in our lives and then attempted to solve this old riddle.
In this post, we look at the ways to create meaning in everyday life. There are largely two ways to live life- consciously and in ignorance. The sources of finding meaning are largely linked to out why’s, to the reasons to why we do things. If we do things consciously knowing our purpose, we would find that our days have meaning or else, there may be a lot of busyness in life but no meaning. Read the post for a detailed understanding of the process of finding meaning in life. It is a journey, like life.
Suddenly, we find in 2020 because of the over institutionalizing of the internet in our lives, that the people running the world are in their 30’s or early 40’s having started on their journeys in their teenage or in their 20’s. People like Mark Zuckerberg, who started when he was 19. People like Larry Page and Sergey Brin who started in when they were 25. On the other hand, people who are in their 40’s and beyond who haven’t even started on their journey of happiness because they are waiting for the right time since their lives got spent up in figuring out how to earn a living and start a family. These people didn’t grow up with the internet like the generation of the late 90’s or early 21st century did, and hence did not have access to information like the later entrepreneurs did. There are writers and comedians who are winning in their 20’s and teenage and those in the 40’s are wondering where they are placed in the world.
Does that mean that those beyond 40’s are destined for misery? Hell, no!
In this post, we looked stories of people who started on the journey of self-awareness and happiness a little late in life, especially after 40. We need these stories so that we can inspire people to pursue their dreams and happiness regardless of the age.
Are you over 40 and struggling to find happiness? Read this story.
Now, the United Nations runs an annual world happiness survey. Finland has ranked 1st on the survey for 3 years in a row. This is the happiness blog and we must talk about what is Finland doing right to be ranked the number country in the world on happiness.
We did. It turns out that it is not a fluke. Finland is doing a lot for the happiness of its people. For starters, education and health have been taken care of, by the state. They are publicly funded and available for everyone as they are considered a basic human right. That’s incredible to start with, for anyone looking at Finland from a developing country.
Read the wonderful story of what makes Finland the happiest nation on the planet.
One of the reasons we struggle to find happiness as people is because we are always looking at other people’s lives and then find out what is lacking in our lives. The grass on the other side looks greener for multiple reasons, one of which is that we are not taking care of the grass on our side.
If we are to be happy, we need to focus and water the grass on our side. We must focus on our strengths while making our lives better. We can’t find happiness if we keep looking at the grass on the other side of the fence.
In this post, we look at passion and try to understand the traits of passionate people and what drives them. A lot of people in the world never really care of figure out what makes them passionate. They don’t ask them about their passion/s.
If we are to enjoy life and do work that is meaningful, we need to find our passion and that will open the door to happiness.
Depth is important because without depth, we can’t live an intimate life. What’s an intimate life? A life where we understand that it matters and the things that we want to do to make it matter.
Without depth, life is shallow, superficial and materialistic. As long as materialism and money continue to drive the society, we won’t find depth. Money is not the end of life. It is a means to an end. Similarly, if we don’t ask ourselves important questions about our lives, we will continue to live at a superficial level where deep happiness will elude us.
Happiness lives in the depths of soul and unless we make an effort to access our soul, which is who we are, and why we do what we do, we will not be able to realize or feel that happiness.
That is why, depth is important. Depth leads to meaning. Meaning leads to happiness. If you want to understand a few ways to find depth in your life, read the story and do comment in what you think about it.
No matter what we do, sometimes life hits us hard and we fall down. Sometimes, we find the strength to rise and other times, we just feel like giving up and staying down. We cannot stay down. We know that. We are not losers. We don’t want to be losers.
However, strength doesn’t come by easily. What do we do? In this post, we explore a few ways to lift your spirits when life hits hard and we can’t find the strength to rise up. There are occasions when we feel so depressed that it seems that life is over and there is nothing left to fight.
However, we must keep fighting. We must rise up and fight. Read this post, when you need the inner strength to get up and get going again.
The great Steve Jobs used to ask himself every day that if it was his last day on the planet, would he do what he was about to do. Now, he had the answer and he created some great companies, including Apple. Now, for some folks, it is easy to figure their priorities and what they value. Others don’t figure out what they value till the end of their lives.
Answering this question for yourself will help you in figuring out your true dreams and sources of joy. In this post, I have answered them for myself. Read, may be, and then make your own list. Once you have that list ready, go about creating the life where you can do those things regularly. That’s your list of what makes you truly happy.
Obviously, we would imagine that. This is the encyclopedia of happiness. We want to understand what a world would look like when everyone is happy. The assumption and the truth is that a large proportion of the world is not happy. Millions of people around the world do not have access to food, education, health benefits, internet and several other things which make human life happier.
These are the basics. We don’t even have the basics in place. Beyond the basics, we need to cultivate the set of attitudes which this blog talks about, that would drive the human society to happiness on a regular basis. We don’t have all of that right now.
This story imagines a Utopian world where everyone is happy. What would that world look like? How would the kids feel? How would the adults feel? How would things be different?
Mondays are an important part of our work lives. It is the beginning of the work week. If we are not happy on Mondays, it basically means that we are not happy with our work lives. Unfortunately, that is the case for more than 80% of the world. People don’t enjoy their work and it is seen as a source of pain than a source of happiness and fulfillment.
As long as we keep looking at work as a source of pain, we will not find happiness. We need to transform our work lives in a way that it gives us joy and that we look forward to work. Until we reach a point where we feel joyful about work, and look forward to Mondays, our dreams of a happier world will never become a reality.
In this post, we look at how to look forward to Mondays and not fear them.
Since we talk about passion a lot on this blog, it is important to answer questions related to passion. Given, that passion is one of the key sources of happiness. You can’t find your joy without being passionate about what you do.
However, once you have found your passion, should you quit your job to pursue it?
The answer is not a straight yes or no, but a yes and no. It depends on multiple factors including where you stand in life, stage, and how much money you have in the bank, among other things. In this post, we try and answer this question in a fair level of detail. It is one of the most difficult questions to answer by anyone and frankly, no one but you can answer this question for yourself. This post would serve as a guide in making a decision.
Compatibility is a match between two individuals. It doesn’t only apply to personal life. It applied to professional life as well. However, more so, it does apply to personal life. Relationships are one of the biggest sources of our happiness. Compatibility with your partner plays a significant role in deciding whether the relationship would be a happy one or a painful one.
In this post, we look at the definition of compatibility and the role is plays in making relationships happier. The lack of compatibility makes relationships painful. As simple as that.
In this post, we have looked at what self-awareness means and why it is so critical to finding true joy in life.
Happiness is the most important thing about life and in order to attain happiness, we need to start with a certain level of feel-good about life. That sounds counter intuitive. How does an output become input? That’s by looking at life and realizing how fortunate we have been. A lot of people are addicted to misery and hence they do not allow themselves to be happy.
In order to give our best to what we are doing, we must be excited about it. We would be excited about it if we feel an inherent impulse from it which is installed in us by nature. Many people like stuff which other people don’t and vice versa. You would be excited about soccer if you love it, and your friend loves carom and you hate it. If you love soccer, playing soccer is one way to feel good about yourself that you get to do something you enjoy. Similarly, feeling grateful about you have rather than feeling remorseful about what you don’t is another way to feel good about yourself. Here, happiness is an input.
In this piece, we have looked at several ways to feel good about yourself. You need to feel good about yourself. That’s what spirit is, and in order to enjoy life, we need to be in high spirits. Thankfully, there are ways beyond alcohol to do that.
If you have ever run a marathon, you would instinctively understand what this means. If you haven’t, this post is for you. Marathon running teaches us a lot about life. It teaches us that we cannot run beyond our pace and rhythm no matter what anyone else is doing.
That negates the entire idea of relative competition and we realize that we can only perform to the level of our readiness and that truly we cannot compete with other people. We may learn from them, but we are not beating or trailing behind anyone. We are only competing against ourselves really. This is a huge realisation for happiness, since it will allow you to stop competing with others and focus on your own race.
Regret consumes our happiness and saps out joy. There is a way to live without regret and that’s a process of realizing that we are evolving and have our own journeys. At any moment in time when we take a decision, we take it with the amount of knowledge, experience, wisdom we have at the point in time. We really couldn’t have taken a better decision. This posts talks about a set of attitudes to realize that we can actually live a life free to regret and be at peace when we are away from the chaos of life.
Read on if you feel regret takes away a lot of your happiness away, because you know, it does.
How to be happy at work is a series of strategies that we can employ to make work life happier. This particular list is quite detailed and has 50 ways to be happy at work. There could be more and we are not yet done looking for more ways. If you are looking to make you work-life happier, we highly recommend you read this one.
They say that life is a roller coaster and they are right. None of us can be happy all the time and we go down life’s roller coaster every now and then. Unlike an actual roller coaster, there are no warnings and we don’t know when we are going down, so we are mostly unprepared.
However, when we go down, we need to know how we will get up. We need to get up because we can’t stay down. We need to restart the journey to happiness. This post deals with strategies to deal with tough times and emerge like a fighter. Fighters fight- Rocky Balboa
Happiness is everywhere if we only look for it. Yes, we do need our dream to be fulfilled for finding bigger chunks of joy, if they were chunks, but that doesn’t mean we have to wait for forever to be happy in our everyday life or that we must fix the fundamentals even for traces of joy.
Take the time to smell the flowers, they say. Who knows how many springs are we given?
Solitude and loneliness are not the same thing. You could be alone and happy. That’s solitude. You could be alone and unhappy. That’s loneliness. Nobody wants to be lonely. However, all of us have a deep need for solitude. We don’t always have to have company and in fact, if we are to be happy and find ourselves, we need to make time to spend with ourselves.
This post is about the difference between solitude and loneliness.
Depression is a global disease and it affects the best of us. In the recent history, we have lost a lot of rich and successful people to happiness. Everyone is suddenly talking about the importance of mental health and why we should talk about it. That’s important but it is equally important to talk about if there are ways to prevent the onset of depression and get rid of it. Are there ways to think in a manner that one doesn’t get into the deep well of depression?
That is the objective of this particular post. Mental health is important not only in the context of cure, but also in the context of prevention.
Entrepreneurs are a rare breed in the society and they will always be a rare breed. Irrespective of the press that entrepreneurship gets, it is extremely difficult to be entrepreneur and if so, it is even more difficult to be happy as an entrepreneur. Are entrepreneurs happy is a rhetorical question that seeks to understand what it takes to be an entrepreneur and if the process is a happy one.
If it’s not a happy outcome, or process, is it even worth pursuing. As you would know by now, I would not recommend anything that doesn’t create happiness in the process. Life is lived in the process, on the journeys. The destinations don’t last long.
Is entrepreneurship a worthy journey?
This question is not really about death. It is about life. It is about the kind of life you would like to live so that people remember you in a certain way. What kind of life should that be that you leave a legacy that lives beyond your life? Those are the kind of questions that we have explored here and if you are interested in the quality of your life that leaves a legacy, you should consider reading this post.
If we can’t feel and measure happiness, then it’s pointless. It is stupid to say that happiness can’t be measured. Of course, it can be measured. It can be measured at your home, in your office and in your social circles.
We have looked at defining here a simple methodology to measure happiness and we should be measuring happiness starting now. If we don’t know how happy we are as people, how would we improve?
We cannot achieve happiness without facing failure since failure is a part of the process of achieving our dreams. A lot of people do not even take a shot at their dreams because they are scared to fail. If we are scared to fail, we will not act and pursue what we truly value, and hence we will not find our happiness.
We try and understand here what failure means and how to look at it positively. Only when we look at failure as a positive and constructive part of the process, we will be able to deal with it.
The kingdom nation of Bhutan is famous all over the world for its policy of calculating Gross National Happiness over Gross Domestic Product as a measure of nation’s well being. However, it has consistently not performed well on the World Happiness ranking instituted by the United Nations early this decade.
Is Bhutan happy, and if it is, what can we learn from the island nation about happiness?
Thank you for reading.
The purpose of this blog to help you find your happiness. Please read the other posts on the blog, and follow so that you get updates when new posts are published. Please share any posts you like with your friends so that they can also find their happiness. If you have any feedback for me, please leave it in the comments and I would be happy to work on it. If you would like to support my writing and this blog, you may please send a donation through PayPal here.
I appreciate the time you spent in reading the blog and wish you happiness.