Friday, 26 November 2010

Measuring happiness

So the UK government are going to put some questions together to gauge the well being of the nation, and yesterday on the radio I heard a BBC "expert" putting forward what she thought could be four of the questions.

* How much love do you have in your life?
* What's the first thought you have in the morning?
* If you could change one thing in your life what would it be?
* If you lost all your material possessions what would you be left with?

The first thought I have in the morning can vary from day to day - sometimes I think, "I must go for a wee!" or I can think, "Where am I? Forres? Shetland? London? Home?" the variations are limitless, but joking aside, I know what she's getting at - do I want to jump out of bed with glee diving head first into the day ahead? Or do I want to pull the duvet over my head and hide away from the world? Well thankfully for me these days I'm more of "jump up and get on with it" kind of person, though there have been times in my life when I have pulled the duvet up over my head and hidden away.

Measuring happiness is never going to be an exact science, and surely for each individual it's about noticing what you feel on a day to day basis. If you find yourself looking back and reminiscing about a time when you felt happier, ask yourself what was happening then? What was happening in your life that isn't happening now? Are you able to re-kindle any of those activities, friendships, hobbies? Are your emotional, physical & spiritual needs being met?

Remember that if we've had the experience of feeling happiness in our lives, we have the ability to feel that again. Life can of course throw us some devastating experiences, but human beings are amazing beings - and it is possible to recover, and be happy again.

Notice what you're feeling today, if you could feel happier what could you do now to take a step in that direction?

"Knowledge of what is possible is the beginning of happiness." - George Santayana

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