TED Conversations

teresa proctor

This conversation is closed. Start a new conversation
or join one »

Are you a happy person and if so what brings you happiness?

The world shows and gives us many different images of happiness, buy this, go here, do this,, etc. but if we are constantly searching for external happiness how do you know when you have found it?
I personally prefer to find happiness within me, in my experience this is me standing in my power.

Topics: bliss happiness joy
0
Share:
progress indicator
  • thumb
    Jul 4 2013: What is happiness, not the definition of it, but the essence of or the substance, before it is fashioned into the conscious experience? Does happiness exist without the word happiness? How do you know when you are happy, or must someone tell you and educate you about it?
    Can you desire happiness, like you desire a pair of shoes?
    These are questions one must ask, not just believe that there is something called happiness, and the way to it is by doing this or that..
    Carl Rogers and others have spoken about being Authentic. Being authentic is being without conflict.
    But that requires complete honesty and I am afraid, honesty, like Billy Joel sings, "is such a lonely word/ every body is telling lies".
    Honesty profits you nothing save the authenticity of your self. But without that, happiness is also "such a lonely word".
    Our consciousness is profit driven, and we see profit as the basis of happiness rather than the cause of misery.
    This is where humanity is wrong. Because happiness, authenticity, is universal.
    Profit is not. It divides and creates misery and unhappiness. But we are blind to it.
    Profit drives us to wars, to exploitation, to suffering. To violence, rape, stealing, lying, crime.
    Is this so hard to see?
  • thumb
    Jul 3 2013: .
    My answers:

    (1) I am a happy person
    because I know what invalid (harmful) happiness is.
    (2) Making a-step-better for keeping our DNA alive brings happiness
    otherwise humankind can not survive.

    Wrong?
    • thumb
      Jul 3 2013: Please, can you elaborate on (1)?
      • thumb
        Jul 4 2013: .
        Thanks!

        Here is a brief:

        (1) Valid happiness is the short-time feeling of things being a-step-better
        . . for keeping our DNA alive.
        (2) Invalid happiness is the short-time feeling of things being pseudo-a-step-better (actually a-step-“worse”)
        . . for keeping our DNA alive.
        . . E.g. having junk food, drinking alcohol, smoking tobacco, abusing drug,
        . . .... wasting (fashion, big house, touring, .... causing environment crisis),
        . . .... making too much money (causing inequality, crimes, wars, ....
        . . .... "destroying our planet", .... humankind self-extinction).
        (3) “Invalid happiness” is out of the valid scope of our instincts formed 10,000 years ago.


        About 90% of happiness we pursue today is invalid happiness.


        Wrong?


        (from Be Happy Validly! p 39)
        • thumb
          Jul 4 2013: Wrong? Nah, not at all. Being able to suppress one's appetites is something to be very happy about. I blow smoke in your face during your inhale of air would most likely make you unhappy. At that moment you would not be a happy person. :) I would never do such a thing though. Smoking doesn't make me happy, it makes me feel weak thinking I HAVE to scratch that itch. Other times I feel relaxed by it with no guilt. I'd be happy knowing I should have not tried it to begin with before I had any idea what peer pressure ever was. People get caught up in thinking it makes them who they are like an attachment on character on both sides (smoker and nonsmoker).
  • Jul 2 2013: Leo Tolstoy said: "If you want to be happy, be!"

    notice he never said: "If you want to be happy, Have!"

    but in was 200 years ago.

    in 21st century, we go like this: HAVE DO BE...

    Have X
    Do Y
    Be Z

    Have a good grades! Have a good friends! have a good day!
    Do you job well! Do your homework.
    so you .... will BE a good boy/girl / employee / manager / boss / doctor etc

    Have you ever heard someone tell you: "Be a good friend!" "make a good day"

    Yes we have to make our days good, no one else would do that for us or would give it to us.
  • Jul 2 2013: Adesh,

    We have been given the journey of circumstance and situation which do have the ability to color our lives, but we have also been given a mind to choose what the color shall be.
  • thumb
    Jul 2 2013: I choose to be happy always, no matter what.

    Happiness is not pleasure.
    Even if we are not experiencing pleasure we can be happy.

    Happiness does not depend on outside factors, situation or cicumstances,
    It lies and comes from with in.

    Nobody can make us unhappy

    Have belief, we can be happy no matter what.

    We choose to be happy as a way of life and we need not wait for it to happen.

    Happiness is harmony. Happiness is a state of mind where our body, mind and soul are in harmony.
    • Jul 2 2013: a 3 years old kid is happy when you give his / her chosen toy / food / etc...

      you may say, They we buy happiness for our kids...
      I would say: "YES!"

      read this:
      http://blogs.hbr.org/cs/2013/06/how_money_actually_buys_happiness.html

      Giving makes us happier...

      in may cultures, some parents or couples hardly they say to their children or partners that three word sentence: "I love you" ...
      we have to say that on daily basis, even a few times in a day to our partners / Friends / colleagues / children that we love them and seal it with a big hug.

      how many times we do that today? I guess we all are busy for that.
      • thumb
        Jul 3 2013: Giving you gain , taking you loose.

        You gain happiness and love.

        Give up expectation also...Give but donot expect in return.
  • Jul 3 2013: Edwin, I appreciate and value your response. I asked, "are you a happy person and so what brings you happiness" and yes I said my happiness come from with. However, this is my truth.

    For me, if I allow outside factors to determine my happiness, then my happiness is short live and with short burst of emotions. For me, I prefer to experience prolonged, continuous flow of happiness, which for me comes from my connection to my true self.

    I believe I am a realist also, I may look at happiness differently than you, which I accept.
  • thumb
    Jul 3 2013: Anything that makes us smile or laughter brings us happiness. Maybe it's easy for us to understand if we notice the symptoms.
    I believe in rare cases (if any at all) we can actually say someone is a "happy person" or an "unhappy person" wholly.
  • thumb
    Jul 2 2013: happiness has nothing to do with achievements or circumstances, you just feel happy or not....some people have to use drugs like prozac to feel better..so I don't tink that it is based on a choice, because you do not choose to feel misrable, it's a state of the mind, just like a healthy body. You don't choose to feel sick, but if you catch a could you become sick. Sick minds feel bad and cannot experience happines. So for me, a healthy spiritual condition makes me feel a happy person.
  • Jul 2 2013: Hi Teresa

    I think you asked us how we know when we have found our external happiness, yet you have answered that your happiness come within.

    Happiness is an energy in motion between out mind and body. (neuro scientists can explain its chemistry better than I can)

    at different stage of our lives we want different things, this is unarguable. this may also mean that at different age different external things make make us happy...
    for a 4 year old kid, finding happiness may mean completely different thing compared to someone at age 23 / 45 / 67 / etc.

    at the same time in the same circumstances, someone may be happy with a Ferrari yet another with an ice-cream. This is an extreme example.

    in conclusion, happiness is something that we all as humans peruse but it seems not to be found.

    Me... I am happy when I see my feet above the ground... every morning when my Opportunity Clock rings, (some negative folks call it; Alarm Clock) I wake up as if I am going to live my last day.

    I was born to be Realist but every day I expect miracles.
    Happiness is the key to success..
  • Jul 2 2013: Yes Deepak, to the soul happiness is natural, to the unconditioned self/ ego happiness is special, Thnak you for you response.
  • thumb
    Jul 2 2013: Finding pleasure in the simplest of things is a form of 'happiness within'. It shows that one is capable of a kind of 'self-powered happiness', without the need for too much external stimulation. But how to find that internal happiness as an ongoing, reliably present state?

    Personally, I don't think it's possible to be permanently blissfully happy. I the same way as light needs darkness in order for us to perceive our visual world, so happiness needs sadness in order to provide contrast and context for happiness to exist. I think the happiness we experience would be more intense and blissful if it was set against a background of sadness, in other words.

    If this is true, then the thing we need to accept is the inevitability of sad times. And I choose my words carefully - sad times cannot always be controlled, but they can be accepted as a regularly occurring inconvenience, and somewhat ironically, a necessary pert of being happy.
    • Comment deleted

      • thumb
        Jul 2 2013: That sounds really great LaMar!

        I wish you all the best. Sustainability is the future!

        Allan