Life Is About Being Truly Happy

This is the first of seven key understandings.


It is human nature to seek happiness.  We all want to be happy.  We don’t want to be unhappy.  When we feel happy we want the feeling to continue.

All people everywhere have this desire.  It is universal and timeless.  This is both the drive and the VISION of humankind. We seek and believe in happiness.

The highest aspiration is to want everyone to be happy; to not want anyone to be unhappy.  A concern for the happiness of others is something we see in truly happy people.

By genuine happiness is meant a continuing state of well-being, joyfulness, contentment, stability and serenity.  A state of being at peace with ourselves.  A state of being free from stress, anxiety, frustration, misery or suffering that displays resilience in hard times.  True happiness is not the same as fun, excitement or pleasure though they are part of a normal life. 

Real happiness is the foundation for a good life.  When we are happy life unfolds positively for us. When we are happy we feel that life has meaning and purpose.

What if we choose to adopt the view that life is about being happy – genuinely happy?

Adopting this view provides our basic principle for living – to be applied to the way we think, speak and act: Is it creating genuine happiness?  Or is it making us unhappy?  Is it making others happy or unhappy? Not only now, but over time too.

We can take responsibility for our own happiness.  This will be a challenge!    We may need to apply ourselves to changing our attitudes.

Our ATTITUDE to life affects how our life unfolds.  We can approach life optimistically yet realistically.  We are alive.  We are free.  We have choice.

Life will have its ups and downs.  We can RESOLVE to be happy and choose to live life to the full with a positive attitude, seeking to be cheerful and strong even through the difficulties that life will bring. We don’t need to solve all our problems first, or wait for conditions to change, before adopting this attitude.  We can choose to consider happiness/cheerfulness/positivity to be the starting point rather than considering happiness to be a result of circumstances or material success.  Cheerfulness is an attitude we adopt for ourselves.  It is not about how we present ourselves to others – it is internal rather than external.

We can cultivate a happy disposition and find that the world reflects it back to us. Smile and the world returns our smiles.  It “validates” our attitude – whether positive or negative.

We can resolve to not be daunted by inevitable encounters with the negative.   Especially we can resolve to positively counter any tendencies towards pessimism and discouragement arising within ourselves.

We may need to choose to spend more time in the company of those who approach life with a realistically positive view and less with those whose outlook is perennially pessimistic or cynical.

We can seek to maintain peace and equanimity regardless of events.  This will take acceptance and courage.  A cheerful attitude doesn’t make us immune to life’s problems. Sometimes we will feel overwhelmed and defeated and need some time to regain our good spirits.  We can’t just pretend to be happy and that life is always good.  Life is bitter sweet and happiness is a challenge for us all.

We can resolve to LEARN about what leads to true happiness and what leads to unhappiness.  We can decide that no task is more important, and that we can’t put off tackling this task.

We can endeavour to think and speak and act in ways that lead to real happiness and not to unhappiness.  We can look for ways to help others to be happy and to be helpful to those who are suffering.  We can practise generosity and kindness.  As in all human endeavours sustained EFFORT will be required.

We can live in the present moment and make the most of the present moment.  We can have appreciation and gratitude for our life and live fully and use our lives well.  Our capacity to be happy can grow.

We can avoid falling into thinking that happiness depends on everything in our life being “right”.  We can come to understand that we may not be able to have everything we want; yet we can be happy.  We can try to be content and remember to appreciate and enjoy what we already have and be grateful for the good things in our life.

Resolving to be happy leads to A POSITIVE APPROACH TO LIFE.  We approach life with openness to what it might bring.  We take a big picture, long term view of our existence and choose to see life as a gift to be fully appreciated and fully utilised.

We cease being passive or defensive or feeling helpless.  We realise we are not just a spectator to life – we are participants with the potential to influence people and events in a positive way in line with our vision of happiness and harmony.

We take the driver’s seat and direct our life – we take RESPONSIBILITY for our life. We realise that we will have to learn about life as we live – that time moves along and life won’t wait.  We open up to the opportunity to actively create our own lives rather than just accept one made for us by others.

While recognising the difficulties of life, we can adopt the view that life is what we make it – that we get out of life what we put into it.  We then seek to actively create our life, rather than passively waiting for it, or holding back, or even retreating from it – acting positively rather than just avoiding acting negatively; doing good rather than just being good.  Engaging fully with life we seize each day!

Copyright © 2008-2017 John Frederick Gray



  • A happy life is a good life.
  • It is human nature to seek happiness.
  • The highest aspiration is to want everyone to be happy.
  • We can take responsibility for our own life and our own happiness.
  • We can resolve to have a cheerful and positive attitude to life.

Some quotes about BEING HAPPY

Happiness is the main object of our aspirations, whatever name we give to it: fulfilment, deep satisfaction, serenity, accomplishment, wisdom, fortune, joy or inner peace, and however we try to seek it: creativity, justice, altruism, striving, completion of a plan or a piece of work.      – Matthieu Ricard

Most folks are about as happy as they make up their mind to be.
– Abraham Lincoln

The greatest revolution of our generation is the discovery that human beings, by changing the inner attitudes of their minds, can change the outer aspects of their lives.    – William James.

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For more Quotes related to Life Is About Being Happy go to Quotes page
or go directly to Happiness Quotes.

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For suggestions for Practical Activities and Resources related to this topic click here.

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