Oh, that word "happiness." Such a fleeting word and so misused. We hear it songs, we read about it in the latest self-help book, but still, people can't seem to capture this emotion in their lives.

Happiness as projected by the media, simply can't be trusted. There is someone that can be trusted and that is you. 

Most of us don't want it for a moment, we want this for a lifetime.

But how do we accomplish this?

Well, instead of looking for the latest quick fix for a temporary high on life, let's begin with ourselves. You know the saying that “Happiness is fleeting, but joy is eternal," there is efficacy to the quote. We need to seek permanent satisfaction that will anchor us and that comes from within. If we don't, we will be a ship without a compass. Challenges that tend to work to sink our morale, won't anymore if we dig in deeper. There will be tests through people and through our problems. This is where you have to roll up your sleeves and work at it. Here are the reasons that happiness is overrated to so many people.

We want an easy fix.

We don't know about you, but working hard towards anything is a bummer at times. It can feel that you are pushing a boulder up an icy incline. No one said that we can buy happiness in a bottle. However, in a society that likes everything to be accessed quickly from fast food to social media--we want things now. Let's get real--finding complete happiness will not happen this way. You need to work on yourself since controlling external stimuli is not palatable.

We are bombarded by the media.
Television, commercials and books work to prove to us how we can find happiness in life. If it were only that simple, people. This is where many are preyed upon, especially when they are struggling in their lives. They might try one of the gimmicks out there and it may work for a moment, but no real change takes place. Why does this happen? It is because we believe what we read and what we hear, without checking it out for ourselves. Again, we meet a happiness that is fleeting and the cycle just continues.

We don't like pain.

We have no control over death, the weather, traffic or ending violence. Pain is a part of everyone's life, but we need to trust that there is a bigger picture. Author Jean-Yves Leloup said that sometimes that we must deal with hardships and narcissistic wounds. This can include "shatter the flattering image that we had of ourselves, in order to discover 2 truths: that we are not who we thought we were; and that the loss of a cherished pleasure is not necessarily the loss of true happiness and well-being," he explained. The key is not allowing the pain to become so deep that it interlopes with our harmony and joy.

We believe happiness is found in things.

We are not going to lie and say that purchasing a new car or wearing a pair of killer shoes doesn't bring happiness or that it is bad to do. But after that car note comes in and after the credit card bill shows up--that loving feeling that you did have is gone, gone and gone. People and things come and go, but you have to live with yourself every day. We need to dig deeper to find what is making us run to material possession to get a happiness fix.

We don't like surprises.

Once we can accept that we can't control everything around us, it will be better down the road. No one is exempted from keeping challenges off their doorsteps. If a situation is out of your control, let it go. In life, there will be situations that you won’t be able to manipulate and you need to pick your battles. When you start loving yourself more and really start getting rid of all the junk from the past, you will able to handle things better when they pop up. Once you master this, you will be more steady.

We are disappointed in people.

We hear all the time how being in a relationship will finally bring you that happiness. Don't allow people to keep you isolated because they have hurt you. You need to take the journey through those feelings, but they don't need to own you. Understand that people will never give you the deep and complete happiness that you need. You have to be a best friend to yourself. Start buttressing the positive and refrain from focusing on the negative that you are feeling. Once you do that, you might feel the pain, but it won't interrupt your happiness.

We have no purpose.

At it's core, if you have no purpose in your life or passion--you are just walking around like a deflated balloon. Pay attention to things that come naturally to you. Get out some paper and start writing down ideas. By doing this, you will find something that you can do that motivates you to get out of bed in the morning. Test out your ideas and work to find an outlet for you. This can be volunteering, going back to school or starting a business. Whatever happened along the way to drown your purpose out--it is time to move on. Stop being a bystander in life and get into the game. Life is too short to just exist.

Yes, happiness is overrated, depending on the prism you choose to view it through. By digging deeper, we can find the happiness that is not just a pretty word, but an eternal reality. This comes by loving yourself, accepting that you have no control over life and understanding that happiness comes from within. Take a moment to figure out what happiness really means to you, not for someone else.
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