Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The Importance of Being Happy

My trip to India has been a multi-faceted collection of experiences that have been surprising and unexpected, but not at all unwelcome. The most annoying thing to happen was being locked in after spending the night at a small B&B in South Delhi when we were desperately trying to catch a local flight, but crisis soon passed with no problems. Among the many things I have learned so far have to do with the importance of being happy. When I think about the happiest people I know, I see that the most important qualities they all possess are self-confidence, flexibility, and a sense of humor. No matter where I have visited and who I have observed, I find that this ideal is universal. People who live in simpler places and less are superficially-driven cultures tend to fare better in the happiness department than those who are constantly in doubt about themselves, and threatened by others for no, or very reason, at all.

I have encountered a few people in India who exemplify the current generation of highly ambitious people with grand homes and high-pressure jobs that bring in the rupees, but even with all that they have, they are not happy. Those with the ability to love who they are, who they are with, and where they live are the ones I find are the most successful. In my personal observations in India, the United States, and anywhere else I have lived and or visited in the world, the happiest people are not the richest or most affluent people. They are those who give to others freely, and without the expectation the money as their foremost reward. The other important quality the happiest people I have met all share is their ability to be realistic about the world around them, yet at the same time see the beauty and goodness in it too. It is the greatest attribute to have, and I hope to perfect it in myself with time.

Do you consider yourself happy? What do you think you need to achieve real happiness?

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