Aug 27, 2020



This thought flashed in my mind this morning while going for a walk in the terrace

"You don't seek happiness. Happiness seeks you. Whether you acknowledge it or not is what defines you"

 As I pondered over this thought, three key characteristics of happiness emerged:


(1) Happiness comes to us in myriad ways. What matters is whether we can identify it, recognize it and acknowledge it

Maintaining a happiness journal is one of the ways by which we can recognize such happy moments we encounter during our daily lives. Even if we don't have the time or inclination to write down, a few minutes of reflection at the end of the day or week also helps. 

As I reflected on the past few days, the following were some of the moments when happiness found me.

I have always been wanting to learn to make the mango leaves thoranam that we usually hang on either side of our front door. But during every festival day, I would just buy a bunch of leaves and tie it at the center on top of the front door. On the day before Ganesh Chathurthi, I quickly browsed a Youtube video and learned how to make the thoranam. It was super easy and all it took me to make was 15 minutes. It brought so much happiness to see the thoranam I made, hanging on top of our door. I made an elaborate spread for the festival and felt so much joy without an ounce of tiredness.

I have cribbed quite a bit on my blog and Instagram about how I miss the Sun, thanks to cloudy, gloomy weather in Bangalore for the last couple of months. This morning, when I woke up, I decided to go for a brisk walk instead of my usual Yoga practice. It was cloudy with no sight of the rising Sun but I went ahead with my walk. It wasn't so bad - the fresh air, chirping of birds, the dark sky that wasn't so threatening and the quiet surroundings. At the end of my 30 min walk, I felt so refreshed. Happiness found its way as I overcame my mental inertia.

(2) The aspects of our life where we acknowledge happiness is what defines us, our values, our principles and our character

From the examples, what I observed is that my happiness is reflective of the work I do - any work for that matter; personal or professional. Happiness also finds me when I break my preset internal barriers / mental blocks. Nothing magnanimous, even small fears or minor discomforts when overcome brings me happiness.

(3) The more we acknowledge happiness, the more ways happiness finds us

When we are aware of our present, we are fully engaged and we find happiness in little things. Initially, this might seem like a lot of effort, but over time, this becomes our second nature and we start to recognize and appreciate the little things. 

Another example from this morning - I had made mini idlis after a long time. The idli plates were washed and stacked up on a tray near the kitchen sink. As I was washing my hands, I just noticed a reflection of myself on the mini idli plate and there were 18 faces of mine. I then called my daughter to see her own 18 reflections and we started making funny faces. It might sound silly but if I were so immersed in my thoughts about the past or future, I would have missed this moment. Yes, happiness seeks us when we are least expecting it.

Does this resonate with you? How does happiness find you? How do you respond to it?

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