Twenty-five years ago, Lou Ann and I attended the well known and wonderful Landmark Forum. It is a three day, all day training designed to give participants a breakthrough in creating a better life. During one of the sessions I raised my hand and the facilitator asked me what was my desire? I told him I wasn't that happy, that something was missing in my life. He simply asked me questions about my life. He asked if I had a meaningful relationship with a significant other and I said I did. And that she was my best friend. He asked me where I lived and I told him Sedona. He said "wow". He asked me what I did for a living. I said we had a successful pharmacy in the Village of Oak Creek. He asked what else I did. I said I had my own weekly radio talk show. And that I had lead roles as a performer in musical comedies. He laughed, then asked the audience who would trade their life for mine right now. Almost everyone raised their hands. I blushed.
Like me, many of us are waiting to be really happy. It may begin early in life. We will be happy when we get that new bike. We will be happy when a certain someone notices us. We will be happy when we make the team. We will be happy when we make a certain amount of money, or get that job we always wanted or get that grade we desire. We will be happy when we find our life partner or when we retire or when we live on the beach. And of course, we will never be happy if it is something outside of ourselves.
The secret to happiness is being content with what we have, even though we may want more. When I traveled to other parts of the world and encountered people living in poverty; I saw a light in their eyes that danced! Most of us would have been complaining about our lot in life, if we were in the same situation, but they didn't. They had a joie de vivre that was evident.
I am mostly happy and I still get stuck, when something I am attempting to create, doesn't materialize. My life hasn't changed a lot since that revealing moment in the Landmark seminar. In truth, I pretty much have an ideal life that most would raise their hands and say they would want the same. If you are anything like me and feel you are not as happy as you desire. Stop, and count your blessings and be grateful for all that you do have. Because, as someone once said "happiness is an inside out proposition" I wish you happiness all the days of your life and if you get stuck sometime; just think of me and have a good laugh! From my mostly happy heart to yours.
By Thomas Bruck