Searching for your own happiness.

I found this on Facebook and decided to share a portion of it with you. The descriptions are spot on. I hope you enjoy and maybe find a little happiness here from this blog!

7 Ways to Make Happiness Last

–by Allan Hamilton, Original Story, Jan 22, 2013

…As my wife drove me home, I remember telling myself, “This will be okay.” But then I inexplicably turned to her and said, “We’d better call the kids.” Two days later we were gathered in my surgeon’s office. He’s a talented, compassionate young man, but he was peering down, gazing at my medical chart as he came through the door. He started speaking to my lab report, so I knew. Still, the C-word was the loudest sound I have ever heard. I became completely deaf. I could see my surgeon’s lips were moving but, to this day, I couldn’t tell you what he said after those two syllables.

My life was utterly changed.

This was no moment of epiphany. Just the opposite — an absence of illumination. I lost the ability to see clearly. My life’s purpose — the answer to which I thought was being a neurosurgeon — went out of focus, a trivial blur. Life seemed to separate itself from me, cracking apart, tumbling away in some terrible tremor.

Blinded, dazed, I became a prisoner of my calendar, confined to the dates and times of examinations and appointments. I looked out at the world through the bars of laboratory tests. Blood. Fluids. Counts. Indices of all manner and description. Scanners. Scopes. Probes. I’d become some new planet, upon which all manner of instruments and optics were brought to bear, transmitting back the encrypted reports of my newly discovered life-form. 

Every time, when the next round of tests begin, I feel like I am clutching some cosmic trapeze, leaping out over a great depth, like the Grand Canyon. I’m falling in the thin, cold air, praying for help. Each time my test results come back negative, I feel that heart-stopping grab — the enormous gut-wrenching swoop of salvation. I experience it as incredible, aching, penetrating euphoria. My sight suddenly seems to grow crystal clear, infinitely penetrating. Light seems to spill softly down, kissing every tree, branch, and leaf. Every blade of grass stands out, etched with purpose. Everything makes sense for a moment, like a puzzle pulled into some unified, magnetic message. Even the discovery of the tumor becomes a blessed accident, a reflection of deeper, miraculous coincidence. (No wonder I still sob in the car after every appt. He describes it for me here!)

I remember driving home after receiving the last beneficent phone call telling me the cytology had come back negative. Everything crackled and danced in front of me. I was alive. Here and now was distinct from everything else. It was like I had been injected with a cocktail of amphetamine, aphrodisiac, hallucinogen, and sweet, essential nectar. The noise of the world became music. My car vibrated with meaning. As I ran my hand along my dog’s back, his fur coat became infinitely deep and rich. My wife’s skin glowed. I knew what it meant to be in God’s bosom.

And then it would fade. (Yep)

In a few hours — at most, a few days — the high would be gone. How could that be, I wondered? Insight, awareness, enlightenment couldn’t just wear off like a drug? But that is exactly what happened. Each time, the battery of tests would roll around again, I would find myself transported. I would want to hold on to the magic of that moment but, hard as I might try, I could not grasp it for long. So I asked myself: Was I the only person? Was I some hopeless dunce who could not hold on to “the feeling” of being happy, of being elated for the sake of being?

My old research habits as a scientist die hard. A lifetime of training cannot be easily dissuaded. I began to turn my investigations to this most important question: How can one hold to that incredible moment of happiness? It turns out I am not alone in this matter. Happiness — at least, the pursuit of it — has obsessed almost all of mankind, from our founding fathers to a slew of high-powered scientists who have been tracking the elusive nature of happiness. (There is much more to the article but I had to cut it)

 7 Steps to Make Happiness Last

The experience of happiness simply doesn’t last. It can’t, given the very nature of the brain. But that fact by no means suggests that happiness is not a worthy pursuit. Of course it is! The key I believe is to pursue happiness in a dedicated way that actually works. And the fact that this path to happiness is proven to work says everything about who we are deep down, and what we truly aspire to.

1.  Keep a journal of blessings. Every day write down three items in your life for which you are grateful. Write as much as you can about each one.

2.  Perform three acts of random kindness before noon and three more before sundown. Hurry. Make sure you will get no credit for them and that no one else will ever know about them. (How about a try for one and don’t hurry)

3.  Write testimonials of gratitude to three individuals who meant a great deal to you in your life. If they are still alive, hand deliver them in person. If they have passed away, deliver them in person to their next of kin.

4.  Fill out three thank you cards each morning. (Or when you have the energy)

5.  Buy three books for three friends and send them anonymously to their attention.

6.  Make three apologies for three wrongs you have committed.

7.  Give three days of earnings anonymously to a charity in the name of three individuals who have wronged you.


This article is reprinted here with permission from Spirituality & Health magazine, founded in 1998 for people seeking holistic health in body, mind, and spirit. Its articles draw from the wisdom of many traditions and cultures, with an emphasis on sharing spiritual practices, and look to science to help provide a context for the spiritual quest.

 

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