Be Happy

I started off this month talking about the pressures of December, and I’m going to end it simply with a post about happiness. I’ve asked every author I’ve interviewed what happiness means to them. They’ve offered answers as diverse as each of them is. So … what does it mean to me?

“Be happy” is a phrase I first learned about 25 years ago. No, I’m not referring to Bobby McFerrin’s song “Don’t Worry, Be Happy”, though I do have a copy of it.

don't worry be happy

I’m talking about when I completed my first meditation course – ten days of sitting in complete silence. I’d never meditated prior to that but was open to learning a new discipline. Though fear and doubt accompanied me going into the course, they left soon after I arrived.

I’ve done more courses since that time and estimate I’ve spent about 300 days in silence over the years. For some, the prospect of not talking for an extended amount of time sounds daunting. For me, it’s a relief.  Silence from daily life is unheard of unless you seek it out. I don’t do it to stop my mind from thinking—that’s impossible. I do it to become more self-aware.

I’m not going to wax dogmatic, so no worries. Happiness is something I consider possible, but only with an understanding of the concept of “change.” Nothing stays the same, and ironically, the only constant in life is change. Though many of us choose to battle them—aging, death, unwanted things happening to us, wanted things not  happening to us—these inevitable changes occur and can be a source of great unhappiness. How we deal with them is what makes all the difference.


What makes me happy is not ideological, religiously based, or rooted in external sources. I entitled this post “Be Happy” to emphasize that happiness is a conscious decision—at every stage of life. It’s something we choose, not something we stumble upon by accident.

As you springboard into 2012 with dreams for its endless possibilities, I hope you’ll take pleasure in every step of the way, and remember … to be happy.

All my very best to you, 

eden

 

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24 Comments

Filed under Revelations & Humor

24 responses to “Be Happy

  1. eden, I’ve just blogged about change and dealing with it as well – and I’m going to put the Heroclitus quote on my desk. My schedule changes every week – sometime every day – and though I roll with it, I always feel like I want to manage it. This year I’ve learned that’s impossible so I’m learning to live with it and not worry about the bumpiness of the road.

    Kate

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  2. It’s amazing how state-of-mind relates to everything else in ones’ life! Happy 2012, darling! xoxoxo

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  3. Hi Eden,

    You wrote a very beautiful message here. You are right – change is the only thing permanent in life. The trick to being happy is to ride the wave of change, to let change inspire you to take on new challenges, and to remember that each morning starts the first day in the rest of your life.

    I wish you a wonderful, peaceful (but sensual of course) 2012.

    Con Cú

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  4. Timely message to be sending out to everyone – so often we push ourselves so hard that we forget the most important element in our lives – be happy. When we are happy, we make other people around us happy too!

    Yes, accepting change is the first step towards achieving happiness. I love that song – every time I listen to it, it brings a smile to my face 🙂

    Thanks for this reminder, Eden, and may you stay happy now and forever!

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  5. Yup an early lesson learnt – go with the flow and in enough time look back and even the bad bits have had some benifit mostly I find to the good – opening new oppotunities, new horizons – the trick is to only be nervous not scared – happy new year girl

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  6. Loved your post, not only can we choose to be happy, we have everything we need to be happy within us, we don’t need to look any further than our own psyche. It is a wonderful thing. I wish happiness back to you for this upcoming year. Be happy, Eden, I have faith that you will be.

    Deep Peace,

    Ardee-ann

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  7. What a great blog…As for the silence, I think we all welcome it considering life can be very loud…
    Wishing you a happy 2012

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  8. L.M. Stull

    Well I just love this post and the message you share in it. Indeed, happiness is a choice. Just as sadness is. How we allow the actions of others and their words affect us is all a choice.

    LOVE this message, your writing and your friendship.

    I’m currently meditating weekly on the lessons of the Dao – not sure if you’ve had the pleasure of reading Dr. Wayne Dyer’s “Change your Thoughts, Change your Life” but I love it. Great read.

    Best wishes to all in this New Year!

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  9. The only constant is change. It can be a difficult lesson to learn and even harder to deal with. Still, how boring it would be if everything stayed the same!

    Beautiful post from a beautiful soul. Thank you so much for everything this past year. I wish you much joy and love in the coming year.

    xoxoxo

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  10. Lance

    part of my 25 year battle with mental illness is letting life define me instead of vice versa. Happiness is like porn. I know it when I see it or err uhhhh feel it.

    I’m happy, most days. I’m in love with these 4 women – wife & 3 daughters. I feel safe, protected, emotionally centered ( for someone w an anxiety disorder) and I’m writing.

    It can change any minute but I feel it, happiness.

    Beautiful post. Happy New Year to you and the mister

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    • Lance, I understand. Happiness is more difficult to define when mental illness is involved. I’m no expert but that much I do know and appreciate your candor.

      Your writing is incredible and succinct. You’ve chosen to surround yourself with the people who make you happiest. Setting the stage is sometimes half the battle, and you’re already there. I think that makes a huge difference.

      Thrilled we connected in this late part of 2011, and I look forward to your work in 2012. Happy new year to you and all the beautiful women in your life. You are so fortunate to have one another.

      eden

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  11. Wonderful post. It reminds me of a book called Women Food and God: An Unexpected Path to Almost Everything by Geneen Roth. She says we often focus too much on the future–one this happens, then I’ll be happy–rather than enjoying the present.

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