Seeking and Finding Happiness

“Happiness is like a butterfly. The more you chase it, the more it eludes you. But if you turn your attention to other things, it comes and sits softly on your shoulder.” ~Henry David Thoreau~

Today, I was asked what could have been the most significant question of all time, and the hardest ever to answer. Are you happy? It threw me into a tail-spin. How can such a small, what seems to be simple, question cause so much havoc in someone’s life? But then, how many of you have sat to specifically think about your happiness and what gives you that much sought after feeling of completion? Have we all just become complacent in our everyday lives, so much so, that our minds have tricked us into acquiring new ‘happiness’? Why is this one emotion so elusive to the human race?

So I sat for a minute or two, and I actually thought about it. Am I happy? The answer: I don’t know. I know that I am happy while doing certain things (no, no, no…now get your mind out of the gutter, gee) like…well being a mommy. I can say that is in itself true happiness, but it’s a double-edged sword. Am I happy when my son doesn’t do what he’s told or when he gets hurt? The answer is no…so I’m back to square one. Another happiness I have is writing (like you didn’t know that one was coming). Once again though, it’s double-edged. Am I happy when my plot doesn’t accommodate my story-line JUST the way I want it to? Am I happy when my characters get all weird on me? *sigh* Back to square one.

So I thought some more about it…and realized that the answer was sitting there right in front of me the whole time. Happiness is what you make it. There is no real answer to what makes you happy, because what makes you happy also has the ability to make you sad, mad, or a thousand other emotions. Happiness is in the moment and what you take out of that little piece of time.

Now, I leave you – my WordPress friends, and all others who read my blog – with the same question I was asked today with the hopes that you will also find the time in your busy life and think, I mean really think, about your happiness. Bring those memories out from the dark corners of your mind that you stashed away for a rainy day. Remember your graduation day, being accepted to that one college you wanted to get into so badly, (for some) saying I do and tying your life to someone elses, holding your little bundle of joy in your arms for the very first time, or just those great times you had out with friends who have come and gone…and think about what makes you happy. What brings you true happiness??

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Strength Of Tea…And Your Mind

“A woman is like a tea bag – you can’t tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water.”
~Eleanor Roosevelt
This is one of my favorite quotes of all time. I’m not quite sure if it’s because it refers to the strength of a woman, or if it has to do with my love of tea. Either way, this quote has always stuck with me, all through high school until now.
If you didn’t pick up on it, I am a tea enthusiast! At one of my jobs back in Virginia, my co-workers always joked that they knew that I had come on shift, when they saw a mug of tea on my desk – and they were right. The minute I stepped in the door, I made a bee-line for the kitchen and made myself a cup of hot tea, regardless if it was winter or summer out. To me, hot tea is a comfort drink, and after spending 45 minutes to an hour in traffic…I needed comfort. Not to mention, I seem to be able to concentrate better with a hot mug of tea at my fingertips.
It’s a great stress reliever for me also. You know the days when you fee like tearing your hair out? Yeah, I’m pretty sure I could support the tea franchise single-handedly those days. (Between the time it takes to boil the water and steep the tea to just the right strength, I find that I am calmer – more able to face whatever it is that has turned my day upside down.) I have to confess though, since the birth of my son, there has been a dramatic increase in the days that I need the comfort and de-stressing properties of tea. Raising a child is hard work, don’t let anyone else tell you anything different, but it’s a good kind of stressful; you know, the kind that brings you peace in the knowledge that when your child gets older, they will take those moments that had stressed you out to the max, and put them to good use.
Which leads me to the other part of the quote – you rarely know a woman, until you have been around her during a hard time in life. Then and only then, will you be able to see firsthand how she deals with being under pressure. Does she succumb to it, or does she stand up and do something about it?
This brings me to another point. DO NOT WORRY about making everyone else happy when you need to make decisions in order to move on. You worry about you first, make sure you take care of you before you start worrying about everyone else. After all, YOU are the one with the situation; not your family, not your friends, nor anyone else – YOU. Once you get you taken care of, then move on to everyone else. However, don’t make the mistake in thinking that you can make everyone else happy while keeping your happiness intact. It just can’t happen, unfortunately.
Above all, don’t expect to get it right the first time, because sometimes you won’t. Know that you are going to make mistakes while dealing with these pressures, it’s inevitable. But always keep in mind, that if you did not make those mistakes, you would not learn – thus, you would make the same mistake over and over, making the situation worse.
Just remember, don’t let someone else solve your problems for you. You will never know what you are capable of, nor will anyone else and you run the greatest risk of being walked on by everyone else. Believe me; you’ve got it in you…just give it a go!!