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Happiness is not elusive

Happiness is a butterfly, which when pursued, is always just beyond your grasp, but which,if you will sit down quietly, may alight upon you, said Nathaniel Hawthorne. I’ve been asking a few friends from the blogging community to share their take on happiness. So we had Indy, Christopher, Zeenat and Gopinath do that already.  Today’s post ‘Happiness is not elusive’ comes to us from Chotu’s mom – who writes not only about her little son but also very wisely about everyday life. I’ve been following her blog for a while now and am so happy that she agreed to do this guest post and write as she always does – from the heart.
Thank you, Chotu’s mom for sharing your secret of happiness.
Happiness is a very relative state of mind. It spells different things to different people. For me, happiness comes from being content, from the feeling that I’m justifying my space on the planet.
By this measure, until recently, happiness was a highly elusive prospect, for me. To the world, it seemed like I had it all. A nice husband, NRI (non-resident Indian) life, which meant a fat bank balance as well – and to complete this happy circle a child. Even though, I apparently had everything going for me, when I asked myself, I was not truly happy. I always seemed to search, there was a certain void and it wouldn’t fill no matter what I did. Sometimes I thought I was being vain, just ignoring all the niceties life had given me and moaned constantly about just not being happy. So I went about this phase till it assumed some gigantic proportions and I HAD to find a solution.
I searched within, I drew up two lists, one a list of stuff that saddened me and the other a list of things that made me feel liberated and happy.
As I wrote my first list, I felt like I was admitting to myself, too many thoughts and it was scary, seeing them there in black and white. All of them were way too insignificant to fret and lose sleep over. All the points in the list denoted the fact that I held on to a lot of irrelevant things, carried a lot of baggage. The key was to let go which I was not practicing at all.
My second list was fairly simple. Do-able tasks to a more fulfilling life.
I pondered over the first list for a long time, deciding how I was going to eliminate them from my life. I realized that if I did away with them, happiness wouldn’t be far away too. I then made one final list and this is how it looked.
I have realized happiness comes from:
A) Letting go: completely.
B) Believing that some of the best efforts do not always bring the desired results. However the hard work itself never goes waste.
C) Believing that not everyone can be kept happy at all points in time.
D) Being at peace with oneself.
E) Nurturing a dream and following it whole-heartedly. It is about giving one’s best to this pursuit without worrying about results.
F) Growing plants and tending for them. Keep fish too and see how this transforms your life.
G) As long as you are having fun, without causing any harm to any one else, go ahead, don’t let ultimatums, deadlines, et al come in your way. You have one life to live, live it all.
These may be things we have heard time and again in our life, but believe me; they work wonders if followed diligently. I have been following all points very consciously and find that I’m slowly depleting my ‘baggage collection’. My mind is less cluttered now and I really like the way things are going now. The same stuff but seen in a different positive light.
My only qualification to dole out this gyaan has been that I went through a lot of emotional turmoil and these simple steps helped me ease all the pain.

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