Different Definitions of Happiness: A reflection.

photo & image by e.l. jayne; all rights reserved.

We all honor our own innate ideals of happiness. Our conception of “the good life.” Composing and recomposing our lives around this archetype of euphoria.

But that’s the thing.

Our idea of happiness is only ours. It’s undoubtedly incongruent from the happiness someone on the opposite side of the earth holds. Neither is it the same happiness as those in our lives. Our family, our friends, they all hold their personal paradigms of pleasure.

Let us focus on what makes us happy. Let us allow others to do what makes them happy, too. All in an effort to empower peace without prejudice.

What makes you happy? What are your pillars of happiness? Have you recognized your ideal happiness differs from those around you?



E.L. Jayne’s poetry blog can be found at: http://www.poemsandprose.travel.blog

23 thoughts on “Different Definitions of Happiness: A reflection.

  1. You are so right: true happiness looks different for each and every one of us.
    I think I am happiest when I feel I am showing my most authentic self. It’s definitely something that’s easier said than done, as different facets of our personalities shine at different times, in response to the people around us.
    Thanks for this post, friend. 🕊

    1. Yes, that’s an interesting note. I, too, am my happiest when I am my most authentic self. Even though that is bound to change in response to the environment and people around me. I guess our most authentic self is fluid? And it’s also certainly ever-evolving… never really thought about it like that before 🙂 Take care, Snap 🙂

  2. Travelling. When I’m on the move exploring new places. I love to travel and explore. Being on the road brings me peace. I always feel in the moment when I do. The other thing I think brings me happiness is meaning. The more meaningful I feel my contributions to the world and my family are, the happier I become. Lovely poem E.L. 🙏

    1. Hi AP, I feel at peace and the most present when I’m traveling and exploring new places, too. The downside of that is that now, especially with covid, I haven’t been able to do that. I feel at times I’m my happiest when I’m exploring a new country. This shouldn’t be the case, I should be able to be my happiest self in whatever location I am in. Easier said than done. Have you also experienced this? Have you been able to reach that same level of happiness in your normal routine? (Despite the fact you’re always traveling for work..)

      1. I have to say I’ve found it difficult to remain as happy stuck in one place with the same routine day in day out. I believe we were meant for constantly changing horizons. That’s how life should be. I’ve certainly found my spirit stultified by the events of this past year. With work I’ve been consigned to hotel rooms wherever I’ve gone. Not even allowed out for exercise which has been tough on my mental health. However I also believe you’re right – this shouldn’t be the case. I believe that recognition has been very important. It’s our wanting and desires that cause us the most grief. To live with radical acceptance for the present moment is perhaps the only way to be at peace. As you say – much easier said than done.

  3. Interesting! I wonder what would happen if I asked this question to someone who dislikes the things I like. I wonder if the answer could be relatable for me. There are so many things that make me happy! Good conversations. Family time. Looking back and seeing how much I’ve grown! Walking in nature and experiencing different animals. I also cherish the moments where I can blast music, both literally and metaphorically, as I feel in sync with life’s rhythms. I’m sure there are more, but these are the ones that immediately come to my mind. 🙂

    1. I think that’s a great question and definitely opens up the conversation for acceptance of people that are different than you! I think that a lot of us have many of the same values (love, family, friends, etc), but how we go about achieving them is what differs. For myself I’m trying to realize that there are more ways to achieve something than just my way of doing things, and my way isn’t any better than someone else’s way. Thanks for your comment, I am going to get out in nature this afternoon 🙂

  4. When I experience a day of struggle, I send friends words of kindness. I want to provide some happiness to the world because I cannot seem to find it for myself. Experiencing some beautiful music with others, whether I am playing that music or listening. Sharing stories – those from my own life and ones my imagination thinks up.

    This is a ponderous puzzle. I seek to be an uplifting presence in the world, to empower opportunities for peace for everyone. 💖

    1. Well let me tell you that you definitely are such an uplifting presence for me! You are such a genuine and positive person, and I love how driven you are with your writing, music, and interactions with others. Your friends, your family, your wordpress community, we’re all blessed and lucky to have you in our lives, in whichever way that may be <3

      1. This is a positive cycle I am so glad to have in my life. When I was struggling through years of depression, people provided uplifting presence around me. It must have been tough seeing me unable to break free from the chains of depression holding tight. But my family and friends never gave up, and kept planting seeds of hope. Eventually, those seeds started to grow, and I have learned how to nurture them. Now, while I am in a positive space I reach out to others with seeds of hope. There will be times when I return to the battlefield. But that’s the beauty of having good friends like yourself. People who listen, and pay forward kindness and gratitude.

        This is the third time I have said this to someone this week: it is a joy to spend time with you. To learn, to grow, and to know it’s ok being me.

  5. Love this post. Short and sweet and to the point. What makes me happy – a good laugh (full-body laugh that jiggles your belly), a great intimate moment with family and friends, and delicious food full of flavor that tantalize the taste buds.

  6. I agree that it is important to understand happiness and what it really means to you. I’ve been collecting definitions of happiness. Here are some of my favorites:
    Absence of pain
    Affect balance
    Life satisfaction
    Joy or fulfillment
    Eternal bliss
    Rest of the Lord

  7. Really enjoyed reading your post and about so many perspectives on what happiness is! Most definitely fluctuates for me depending on what life stage/mindset I am in. I do think I impose my ideals subconsciously on to others and wonder why they too can’t be happy with what brings me happiness- embarrassingly I realize it is selfish of me.

    For today my happiness is looking at my children, up at the sky, the deep feeling in a song, an assuring glance from a stranger acknowledging a common bond…

  8. I agree that the definition of happiness is not fixed. Creating your own definition of happiness can help you better prioritize activities and recognize happy times when they come your way.

  9. This is a great insight. The word “happiness” is so overburdened with different meanings that its incumbent on each of us to decide what really makes us happy… and what the word even means.

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