Philosophers debate the true meaning of being happy, scientists study it, and organizations collect data to create a happiness index. How about a laid back take on the topic, and some feel-good photos that will make you smile?
Thousands of books have been written on everything from defining happiness to understanding it to pursuing and achieving it. For a more serious read you can check out “What is Happiness?” or learn about the Science of Happiness, but what about the lighter side? What about just being happy?
However you define happiness, and whatever deeply meaningful journey you may be on, the short term matters too. It matters a lot! Imagine how dreary life would be without all those “little” things that make us happy.
That’s what you’ll find below – no in depth discussion or how-to instructions, just an invitation to give yourself a break and be happy right now, if only for a few minutes.
Happy Places – What’s Yours?
All over the web you can find dozens of lists of happy places that are physical locations. They include towns and cities around the world, tropical islands, spectacular mountains, amazing rain forests, and an interesting variety of other places where people are happy to live or to visit, or sometimes just to dream about.
Do you dream of visiting the wilds of Africa for an up-close look at its stunningly beautiful wildlife? Or, does thinking of a trip like that conjure up mental images of you being eaten by one of those magnificent creatures? To each his own, right?!
Most often we think of a happy place as a mental, emotional, or spiritual experience. It’s somewhere you can go without physically traveling anywhere. The location is within us, a state of mind where there is shelter from whatever we don’t want in our lives so that the only thing left is all that we do want.
Our ideas about an internal happy place can differ drastically. Are you an introvert or extrovert? Do you crave solitude or connecting with people? Do you feel a stronger emotional connection with nature or in a certain cozy room at home that is special to you?
Maybe your happy place involves…
- a peaceful, deserted beach
- a crowded city sidewalk brimming with energy
- a yoga class that makes you feel relaxed and centered
- a crossfit session that makes you feel empowered and enthusiastic
- playing with your kids
- enjoying a rare moment of quiet time while your kids play with friends
- a brisk jog, or a leisurely stroll
- digging in the dirt to work in your garden, or sitting quietly enjoying the beauty of your garden
That list could go on forever, with as many different ideas as there are individuals on earth. The only list that matters is your own.
Do you know what your internal happy place is? Have you been there lately?
Here’s your chance to take a little me time. Enjoy the photos below, enjoy whatever personal mental images they bring to mind for you, and choose to be happy right now. About something. About anything!
Images of Being Happy
What Do You Think?
Would you define being happy as pleasure, contentment, satisfaction, cheerfulness, merriment, joy, glee, delight, well-being, exuberance, exhilaration, elation, ecstasy, jubilation, rapture, bliss, euphoria, freedom, prosperity, gratitude, serenity, hope, pride, amusement, inspiration, awe, love, accomplishment, achievement, something else?
We’d love to hear from you. Leave a comment below to tell us about your own happy place, or share one of the happiest moments or experiences in your life. Remember that sometimes we can even find pleasure in hearing about the happiness of someone else!
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