I’ve seen several quotes recently that are all along the lines of the thought that we are not here to be happy, but to serve and to make a difference in the world. I love the people who posted the quotes, but it got me thinking. This sounds good, but…
—this line of thinking really bothers me for a couple of reasons.
First, it’s based on a belief that we can’t be happy and serve at the same time. Whoa! I know that’s not true. I know that I am truly happiest when I am doing what I am meant to do. By the way, that’s not just one thing – it can be many things in one day. Most of them do make a difference for others, and the rest take care of me.
Which leads me to my second point. I am at my best when I am happy. I do better work, I give more and more freely. As a life coach, this is especially true.
I also believe that we wouldn’t want to be happy if it weren’t something we should have. I don’t believe that happiness is a carrot dangling just outside our reach, torturing us.
There are still remnants of the puritan settlers in the thought that service requires suffering. (BTW, they condemned and burned people like me!) I reject that puritan thinking, because I believe that when we are happy, we are of MORE service to the planet. When we are happy, we bring a totally different level of energy to our work and our being. The world needs lots more service from a place of joy.
This is probably a good time to get a bit more specific on what happiness is and isn’t. Happiness isn’t a string of getting things that you want – although an occasional bit of delight plays a part. Happiness is a symphony of emotions – delight, satisfaction, purpose, connection, selflessness, selfishness, love, connection and so much more – that come together in your unique composition of A Life Well Lived.
Yes, your happiness is good for the people around you, for the planet and maybe even something more.