Secret #7

True happiness does not come from pursuing pleasure-it comes from involving yourself in meaningful, worthwhile and satisfying projects and activities.

Living live for the next physical pleasure like the next steak, butter crunch chocolate fudge swirl chunky ice cream flavor or the newest upside down mind bending roller coaster ride-has its limits. First, these pleasures are over in a few minutes-then what? The next pleasure? Then you’ll be needing a constant flow of physical pleasures and enjoyment in order to feel happy. And to expect a never ending the flow of enjoyments is not realistic. So you are setting yourself up for unhappiness.

How many new outfits will do the trick to make you happy? How many new toys, CD’s, DVD’s, Play stations, new cars…will it take to keep you stimulated and upbeat? Living life from pleasure to pleasure leads to a life of superficiality.

Constantly seeking the newest toy, car, trip or ipod nano is really an attempt to distract oneself from the emptiness of life. No matter how much fun you try to pack into your life-you may find yourself still unhappy.

Real happiness comes from using your creativity to build or create something new. It comes from fulfilling your responsibilities and making your own decisions. It comes from helping and encouraging and nurturing others by giving of yourself-not taking for yourself. It comes from learning new skills and increasing your knowledge about your self and the world. These are in depth and meaningful activities which give you a sense of inner satisfaction and inner fulfillment.

The pursuit of pleasure pathway is an attempt to satisfy the inner self with outer activities. It won’t work.

Try going out of your way to cheer someone up who is lonely-or welcoming a new neighbor. The feeling you will get is not “fun” or physical pleasure. It is a feeling of inner wholeness-because it satisfies the soul. Call it your higher consciousness. Call it spirituality. This leads to your personal growth and this is true satisfaction. This leads to real happiness.

Here are things you can do to grow as a person and thus increase your real happiness:

  • Volunteer at the local Meals on Wheels program
  • Volunteer at the hospital or old age home
  • Bake cakes for new members of the community
  • Write a letter to an old friend who is having a tough time in life
  • Talk to a friend who needs someone to listen
  • Offer to help a neighbor’s child with his homework

Don’t let life happen to you. Make sure that you happen to life. Throw yourself into life. Be pro-active. Make your happiness happen.