I have just finished reading, “The Happiness Project” by Gretchen Rubin. It is about a woman living in New York City trying to find happiness. It wasn’t that she wasn’t happy, but she wondered if she could be happier. So she decided to dedicate a year to her happiness project. Each month she worked on something she thought would make her happier. For example, the cover of her book says, “The Happiness Project, or why I spent a year trying to sing in the morning, clean my closets, fight right, read Aristotle, and generally have more fun.”

It was a good read and a very interesting read. She has a new book coming out in September titled, “Happier At Home.” I learned a lot from reading her book and parts of what she did also inspired me to do my first year of marriage challenge. And of course, her book also made me think a lot. Coming from somebody who is pretty spiritual, I look at the title of her book and wonder why so many people think happiness is something we have to find. I believe it is right where we are. I believe there are so many things that could make our life easier, but would we really be happier in the long run if we got that raise, bought that new car, built that dream house, married our prince charming, won the lottery, and on and on. These things of course would give us instant gratification, but how would we feel a month or two later is something I wonder about. If anyone would like to check research done on this you might be surprised to see what you find. 😉

For me, I believe happiness comes from the inside of us. I believe it comes from knowing who we are. And when I say who we are, I mean as children of God. I believe it is knowing there is a purpose for each and every one of us put on this earth and it is not to just live day to day on a hamster wheel just trying to get by and die. I believe it is knowing there is someone who loves us for exactly who we are despite what this world says about who we are. I believe it is cherishing each and every moment and enjoying the journey of life. I believe the only way we are ever going to be truly happy in the future, is if we learn to be happy in the present. Even in those hard times, because those hard times are what cause us to grow and learn, even when we don’t want to. There are so many things we can regret in this world, but without those things that we did that cause us regret, would we really be who and where we are today?

There is a reason for the calmness after the storm and how death reminds us to live.

I learned to truly appreciate the present while training for my first full marathon. It was brutal but yet so worth it. The time and discipline it takes to train for 26.2 miles is cRaZy yet sane. I discovered while running my best time in a half marathon, that when I focused on the mile I was on, the run was much more bearable. And my fastest yet! I learned to focus on mile 10, not mile 26. Whenever I would lose focus on the present, I would want to quit. When I would focus too much on the end I would start to think, “How am I ever going to finish this?!? I have 16 more miles to go and I am dying already!” It is a lot like life. When we focus too much on what we want in the future, we lose sight of what we have in the present. Focusing on the present makes the journey much more worthwhile and meaningful.

Has anyone else read her book? What do you think about true happiness and where it comes from?

Love & Blessings,
Tara

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