Friday, September 7, 2007

Why is happiness such hard work?

If you’re anything like me, you like being happy and you hate hard work. So isn’t it ironic that being happy often takes a lot of work? For instance I love blogging, but it takes time to come up with a good idea, research relevant material and write it up for all of you. But once I’ve done all that, I get an immense surge of happiness when just one person leaves me a positive comment. Here are a few more examples:

  1. You enjoy being fit and in shape. You find it hard to make time to exercise every day and you already have five things on your to-do list.
  2. You are happy when you cook healthy meals. Finding good recipes and shopping for good quality food takes planning and energy.
  3. You love scrapbooks and photo albums. Family members don’t like their pictures taken and you have to organize everything, as well as print, label and file the pictures.
  4. Being a pet owner brings you joy. Feeding, grooming, walking, brushing and socializing your pet is time consuming.
  5. Reading is your favorite hobby. Your kids need help with homework, there are errands to run, and the bills need to be done.

These were just a few ideas off the top of my head. All of them seemed to involve time – one commodity most of us never have enough of. Time management is hard concept for many of us to manage. Yet even when you’re tired or when you run short on time, doing these things that make you happy brings a sense of satisfaction – even when it causes temporary hardships.

Of course there are always more than 5 things that really make us happy. (If there aren’t you better get a piece of paper and get busy trying to figure out what you enjoy!) Pick you’re top 5 things and make sure to put aside an hour a day to do as many as you can. It doesn’t have to be 60 minutes in a row, 15 minutes of exercise, 30 minutes for dinner, 5 for the dog, 10 for the pictures, etc. Just make sure to enjoy the process. If you’re anything like me, your likes and dislikes may change before you reach your goal – that’s okay as long as you take some time to have fun.

1 comment:

Jean Browman--Cheerful Monk said...

I'm afraid I agree with Thoreau on this one: "Simplify, simplify." I try to keep from getting too scattered. I would pick fewer activities but couldn't agree more that the important thing is to enjoy the process.