Happy Is As Happy Does

Happiness is simple.jpg

A man’s joys are always transient, and since men devote themselves to pleasure, seeking after happiness, they undergo birth and decay.

The Buddha

I'm in a really happy place right now. I'm happy with my career, with my creative output. I've been blessed with the ability and resources to renovate some of the things I don't like in my house. I have a wonderful marriage, great friends, and a loving family. It's almost too good to be true, so I am trying to be very careful, very aware, of how nice things are right now. Because, as you know, life changes on a dime. It's a day to day kind of existence, whether we want it to be or not.

The older I get, the easier it is for me to be happy. Gone are the days of ennui and worry about not fitting in. Gone are the days of starvation and overeating, of over drinking, of over everything. I am much more moderate, in every way. Small things give me great peace and contentment. A good book. A decent glass of wine. A great conversation with my husband. A laugh with a friend. A rainy day. A warm fire. A long sleep in, a cup of tea. A good yoga session. 

This is all I need. These are the things that make me happy. The more stable my routine - read stable as BORING - the more soft and gooey I get inside. Happy and warm and content. 

The thing is, happiness is a choice. It really is. You can choose what you need to make you happy. If it's money and fame and power - yeah, luck to you. But if you can be honest with yourself and choose one thing, just one thing, that makes you supremely happy, and then try to work that action into your life just once a day, I swear to you, good things will happen. 

I really enjoyed this article from Buffer founder Joel Gascoigne. He's found his happiness formula, and makes an effort each day to follow the path that leads to his own personal happiness. I also found the overwhelming negativity in the comments fascinating. Some people don't like to see other people happy. It's true. It's sad, but it's true. 

For those of us who are in stressful jobs, with deadlines and pressures and all that, following this kind of simple routine can work wonders. It can lead to great happiness. 

Tomorrow, I have a launch party for my ninth novel.* My parents are flying in so we can have an early Thanksgiving, and they will be there. Friends and family, at one of my favorite bookstores, on a chilly Saturday afternoon? My definition of happiness.

So tell me. What's that one thing that makes you supremely happy?


*If you're interested, the signing is at Mysteries & More, 2-4 p.m. in Lenox Village, 6965 Sunnywood Drive, Nashville. Light refreshments will be served.