Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about life, purpose and passion. Whenever anyone asks me about what I want in life, I’ve always said I just want to be happy! I know, talk about shooting to the ultimate thing here. Some people scoff at the statement as it might seem so simple or perhaps too non-specific. But from a young age, I sort of realized that the many material things we might want or experiences we want…all boil down to the pursuit of happiness. We want lots of money to buy that new gadget or to go on that vacation…because we believe it will make us happy. We want more time to do that big project, because we believe it will make us happy. We go see that movie with friends, because we think it’ll be fun…really, will make us happy.

In my day to day life, there are many little things that make me happy. A kiss goodbye or hello from my husband…a swish of the tail by Vash to show his happiness…followed by lots of licking…the print magazines arriving in the mail for me to devour…making that iced latte I can’t seem to have enough of…seeing beautiful art online…listening to good music, while I break open the terrace doors and let in all the light every morning…diving into our comfortable soft bed for the night. Yes, so many little things that give me pleasure. Would they simply be considered comforts? Does real happiness only count for big things or maybe there’s more to it…

I started looking into the actual science of happiness. Although I have my own thoughts and feelings on the subject, I really do enjoy studying and researching my topics of interest. It gives me a way to organize my own thoughts and perhaps render me more able to express them. I also believe wholly in the scientific method…Bill Nye the science guy – gosh I loved that show!

So in learning a bit more about the research that has been done…there is something to be said about the different types of things you can do to be happy and how they fall into different categories…almost like levels from pleasure to flow to meaning. This way of thinking really makes a lot of sense to me. There are any number of things we can do that give us pleasure and they do contribute to our happiness, but it is often short-term happiness. In the moment. But the next level of flow is like when you get lost in time painting, dancing, creating. That state of flow. I think many artists know the feeling. So ultimately, we need to get to meaning because that is for the long-term. Something that will be a life-long type of happiness…or at least contributing to our life-long happiness. I suppose that is why so many people break out and become entrepreneurs and pursue their passions…because they want to do something bigger than themselves. Change the world. Sounds lofty, but wonderful at the same time, huh?

So that’s what I’ve been thinking about. The many pleasures I am thankful for…the flow I am able to achieve in creating…and thinking about the purpose and meaning of my life…

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