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Happiness is a mental or emotional state of well-being characterised by positive or pleasant emotions ranging from contentment to intense joy.

Happiness (noun [U] UK) – The feeling of being happy: ‘It was only later in life that she found happiness and peace of mind’. (Formal) ‘Will you join me in wishing the bride and groom every happiness?’

Happiness (Line breaks: hap¦pi|ness) Pronunciation:/ˈhapɪnəs/ noun – The state of being happy. ‘She struggled to find happiness in her life’. ‘His heart swelled with happiness’

Happiness…. It’s a funny old thing… something we strive for and believe we should all ‘be’…
Did you know that today is the United Nations’ International Day of Happiness? I didn’t, I only found out on Tuesday…This year people are invited to focus on their connections with others in order to raise the issue of social isolation….
My photographer friend and colleague Tracey mentioned to me an upcoming blog post the other day (you can read it here, she’s much more eloquent and intellectual than I am) and her musings got me to thinking about happiness…
I consider myself to be a happy person. Or am I just optimistic? I don’t read the news, I say it makes me a happier person, or just naive and seeing the world through blinkers? I rarely cry or have down days, is this because I am just happy or because I struggle with sharing my emotions….
When you really look at things, it’s easy to take ‘happy’ and make it something else.
I consider myself to be incredibly lucky… I am not rich, nor incredibly beautiful or thin or famous, but I am content. I am healthy, I have friends and family whom I adore. I do a job I love and am passionate about. I can look in the mirror and like what I see, I have a home over my head which I can afford to pay for. I am blessed in my life and this does make me happy….
So when I’m feeling down and comparing what I have to others, what does that say about me?
Happiness, is it something that happens now and again, or is anyone generally happy all the time? I don’t know many people that don’t slip every now and again, have down time or blue days… does this mean you’re not a happy person or just that this up and down flow of emotions allows you to take stock of all you have to be happy for and pick yourself back up again?
When thinking about connections with others in order to raise the issue of social isolation, that’s an interesting thought too…. Can you only be happy if you are surrounded by others whom you love, or before you do that must you learn to love and be happy by yourself?
Can you only be truly happy if you are happy within your own skin first… then the other stuff like friends, family, lovers etc that just adds to your happiness?
I’m getting deep and meaningful over here aren’t I?
Let me leave you with this…. My thoughts on me and my happiness…
Today I am happy… I felt a bit down this morning, but then I also laughed with my love in bed over something silly we saw on Facebook. I felt frustrated over an authoritative text I needed to send and an awkward phone call I was going to have to make later, but then took pleasure in making myself something lovely to eat for breakfast and laying a table for dinner with friends tomorrow night. My back is aching as I’m writing this, but later I can do some Yoga and take some time to relax…
Happiness to me is a feeling… I feel happy, I know that I mean something to lots of people, that I can brighten their day and that makes me feel happy. I have a man who I adore who will come home later, kiss me and ask how my day was, for that I am appreciative and feel happy. I get to chat to my Mumma later about something exciting and her input and enthusiasm makes me feel happy. I have fun things booked in with friends to celebrate my birthday and this too makes me happy…
I can ignore all the stuff that makes me unhappy, or worried or stressful, because when it comes down to it, it’s not as important, I could choose to dwell on that and let it bring me down and lower that feeling of happiness or I can be proactive and stay focussed on everything that makes me happy.
And that’s how I choose to live my life, that’s why I consider myself to be a happy person, not because I don’t have the bad stuff and the down days, but because I focus on it, I choose to be happy, to be optimistic and to smile… that’s the key really isn’t it!?
So I’d like to wish you all happiness, may you smile and take stock of all you have to be happy about, surround yourself with those who make you feel happy, and go to sleep tonight having done something to bring a little happiness to someone else’s day.