3. Find happiness at work and creation
Agreed that since the late 90’s, we’ve all heard more and more about work-life balance. But let’s admit that we all know someone who is very content doing what they do. Their bills are paid on time, they contribute to their work environment and it all brings a sense of achievement. Work, when done boldly and happily, can generate a thrill and grounding that is difficult to challenge as an idea.
In the book “The How of Happiness”, which cites numerous studies, it is stated that only 10% happiness is circumstance-based while 40% is activity-based. Which indicates that happiness can indeed be created and more so when you do something you love.
Now you might counter this argument and say, everything comes with its own issues. And I won’t disagree with you. Only that when you spend time finding your purpose and acknowledging what actions feel most authentic to your sense of being, something else emerges.
I like to believe this is what some people say is a “flow state”. When you’re in flow, multiple things happen – your focus sharpens, distractions fall away, your engagement improves and to help it all, even time dilates (at least people perceive it to be so). It is akin to falling in love, in some ways, but also a departure, allowing you to focus on manifesting what might just be your most real self.
4. Build a community and contribute to it
You’d be right to say that this involves aspects of both the above-mentioned points. Let’s take the example of Bhutan. The country surveys its citizens across nine key indicators to observe contentment and fulfilment, social vitality and connection being one.
Even the Government of Victoria, British Columbia has been participating in what is known as a Happiness Index Partnership and it has been observed that people in Greater Victoria who don’t get the opportunity to mingle too much socially, still feel less stressed. This is attributed to the sense of community that has been promoted in the area, 31% claiming their lives were “not very” or “not at all” stressful.
You may even want to revisit the old saying, “it takes a village to raise a child.” Why?
Because increasingly as a society, we’ve been sliding into individualistic nooks, seeking everything that makes us loved and happy from one or two people (typically parents, spouse or children).
This is stressful for the one seeking love, as well as the one having to “give” it. Though the definition and our own conditioning might make it difficult for us to believe, love can in fact be found in many more ways than one, even beyond all that is mentioned here.
Keep exploring and keep discovering all that challenges you yet provides comfort, brings you closer to your dreams and makes you more of who you are.