Happy____________. (fill in the blank)
Dear old and new friends,
“Happy” is our favorite wish extended for birthdays, New Year’s and other holidays. To wish happiness to another is not an insignificant wish since studies show that happy people live longer and are healthier than those who are not. Happy people bounce back quickly from setbacks and failures. Happy people are the most attractive. While exercise is touted as the best medicine, from medical research its Siamese twin is being happy. If you filled in the empty blank in the title of this reflection with your own name, would you expect any surprise in your life?
Unfortunately those greeting cards wishing you happiness do not contain a package of it or a map with directions where to find it. In fairy tales, after many struggles, the young man and woman are married, with their story ending, “And they lived happily ever after.” That is the unspoken wish at every marriage, even if never expressed. In real life today unlike in the fairy tales, close to 50% of those married are not happy ever after, and often the marriage ends in divorce. Unknown is the actual figure of how many of those who remained married their whole lives do live happily ever after.
While I did not see the presentation I understand that last year PBS premiered a documentary entitled “Happy.” It featured interviews with people across the world and with scientists engaged in this happiness research who asked people what they wanted to be happy. If those research-scientists came to your door, how would you respond to their question, “What do you want to be happy?”
However their global research of that documentary revealed what wise men and women down through for the ages have proposed, if you’re interested in living happily ever after just follow this ancient secret map.
This map should be included with every birthday card since the ancient secret of happiness is in doing things for others!