If you check out a Self-Help department of books,
You’ll find very quickly in one or two looks,
That there are now so many great publications
On happiness-seeking, in all combinations.
For instance, you can browse “Finding Your Bliss,”
See lots of suggestions; just do that or this.
Or maybe you wish to avoid any sadness,
(Though believing this works is subscribing to madness).
Sure, you want some happiness; that’s a great goal,
And it may not require a vast rigmarole,
But rather a shift in the way you perceive
What’s already present, and what you believe.
Regarding this first point, have you taken time
To focus internally – what’s in your mind?
If you feel unhappy you must name the cause,
To do so you’ll find that it’s all in the “pause.”
Too often we glide around focused on actions,
And find small frustrations bring dissatisfactions,
So then we assume a great generalization
About how we’re due for some real compensation.
Or we believe there is a set quantity
Of happiness due to each one, like a fee
Which we will receive if we somehow perform
Or get lucky, but certainly “merry” is the norm.
What’s your signal for happiness, how will you know?
Do you think it should linger and constantly grow?
That when you’ve achieved it you never will feel
Less than joyful? So sorry, it’s time to get real!
It’s actually not such a difficult thing
To find special moments that make our hearts sing,
For some they’re about visual beauty or fun,
Or nature, a friend or the warmth of the sun.
Feeling safe makes us happy, or giving our aid,
And listening to music or the day we get paid,
Relaxing or working hard – both can feel good,
And learning new skills we thought we never could.
Being with company, finally alone,
Chatting or texting or hiding our phone.
Reaching a goal or devising a plan,
We like looking forward as much as we can.
And if you’ve been hoping and striving for one thing,
See each opportunity is great for something
And find the surprises you never expected,
By making new choices, not previously selected.
If something’s of interest, get busy and grab it,
With practice you’ll find you’ve created a habit
Of trying new things and resisting your fear,
And this will bring pride and a lot of good cheer.
It all starts with you, happiness is elective,
You may think it finds you but it’s more subjective,
So look deep inside and start knowing yourself,
It’s probably there on your own mental shelf.
Take time to assess yourself, think: “How am I viewed?”
Do you like who you are, and what’s your attitude?
While most avoid feeling bereft, some seek it out,
Are you confident that there is “plenty” about?
Are you optimistic, expecting good things?
And therefore you find them in what each day brings?
Or are you just negative, seeing the worst?
Always waiting around for the bubble to burst?
You’ve got to look inward, spend time alone - focus,
Well-being’s available – no hocus-pocus,
There’s lots of potential within and without,
So you bring the spot light and point it about.
If you enjoy making connections with others,
You’ll find even strangers can feel like your brothers,
You’ll give off an energy folks will admire,
It takes one to know one, (this will not back-fire).
Now try to be brave and name what you’re feeling,
Learn the whole spectrum – some are not appealing,
But all of your feelings will make you grow stronger,
By facing the tough ones, the good ones last longer.
Happier people aren’t blind nor naïve,
They feel all the negatives, but they believe
That their calm and contentment will soon be back,
They focus and work to get on the right track.
Find a balance of feelings, try not to be passive,
The effort’s not easy, but really not massive.
Like F. Scott Fitzgerald, the more recent bard
Said of life: “Nothing any good isn’t hard.”