Stop worrying about being happy. Perish the thought from your mind that perhaps you aren’t happy. The pursuit of happiness is a pathetic quest for dozens of reasons, mainly because it’s chasing your shadow and that’s bound to make you miserable, not happy.

Look at friends and family. You know who is content and who isn’t. And what’s characteristic of the happy ones is that they aren’t on a happiness expedition. They’re in good shape because they’ve made decisions that put them in good places. And then there are others you know who are constantly and eternally trying to get in touch with themselves. They dig deeper and deeper in self-reflection and how many ever emerge as anything but wounded souls?

So what’s the prescription?

Rather than seeking happiness, try to minimize or perhaps eliminate the stuff that makes you feel unhappy. And that’s a doable program with hope for success. If you can fix that which bothers you a feeling of well-being will result. Of course, repairing that which annoys you isn’t immediate or easy. First, you must recognize what’s causing you distress. Next you must  implement a  program to reduce the friction.

I submit humbly that you’ll be so busy working to reduce irritants that you won’t have time or need to dash after happiness. As a wise old man once said, “Ditch happiness and get on with living.” The task is lifelong. But the formula works.

 

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