Ever since I can remember, I was trying to figure out if I am happy. It’s stupid, really – this insistence on determining if I am happy in general, as opposed to experiencing moments of happiness.
The older I grew, the less I preoccupied myself with the “Happiness” question, simply because I became way too busy.
Yesterday I met with a dear friend, and thanks to him, I now have the best gauge I have ever had for answering the Happiness question. That friend is unhappy with his life and feels that he needs to make changes.
As he was trying to explain how he feels, he said something that made his misery very clear. He told me, “When I look at my life now, and I try to imagine myself living the same life forever, day after day, until I die, I shudder. I can’t handle the thought that this is it – that this is as good as it gets.”
After he had left, I started thinking about my own life. I asked myself the same question that he had taught me to ask: “If this is my life from now on, if this is my reality for the rest of my life, how do I feel about it?”
My answer? I WISH this could go on forever. I’m afraid it won’t, because of aging and illness and the kids growing and detaching and leaving. But if I could somehow make a deal with someone and freeze my current life and make it last until the day I die – I would make that deal in a heartbeat.
So at least according to this “test,” I am happy.
Do you agree that this is a good way to measure happiness? Or is it simply fear of the unknown and a desire to stick with what I know?
How do you feel about the “Happiness” question? Do you think about it often? Are you too busy? Do you think it’s a waste of time and energy, or is it an important question to ask ourselves?