The myth of Happiness

Two happenings this week

(1) We have been rolling out performance bonus letters to staff at work. Realized everyone is happy until they start comparing their salary increments with their peers

(2) 6 colleagues at a local jewellery store pooled in money to buy tickets that won the 12 crores bumper prize at the Onam lottery… They were being interviewed on the radio last evening as I was driving home and none of them seemed to be “over the moon” happy- infact they sounded a bit dejected 😡 if you ask me.

Wonder if the realization that a large portion would go to taxes and the rest had to be Shared was too depressing. Hmm.

Have you noticed how happiness always seems to be a moving target. When I find the right job- I’ll be happy. When I marry the right person- I will be happy. When I win the lottery and become a millionaire – I will be happy. And then we reach some of those aspirations – the happiness is temporary and we go back again on another miserable adventure in pursuit of happiness.

So, is happiness then a “natural state” for us humans at all? If so why does it always feel just out of reach and temporary? Or why is it that nature required us to

Work more muscles on our face to smile than to frown…. Looking at kids we realize that our natural disposition as humans is to be happy, however the problem is we keep looking for happiness in experiences and objects outside of us- like the size of our paycheck or the well-being of our loved ones.

I look back and realize I was most happy when I was emotionally invested in multiple areas that brought me joy- playing tennis, the guitar, Art, friendships, religion, etc. Most of which were in my total control, inside me and probably what I was good at.

However the mistake we make as we go through life, is that we unconsciously throw away these passions like a newbie at a nudist beach – running to the water line, while stripping to our bare bums in gay abandon, with only one hope that the approaching wave will save us from more embarrassment. Unfortunately many of us don’t make it in time.

There are slogans and posters in many companies which sometimes mislead,- “happiness @work” it reads, but then can you really find true lasting happiness at work? Nope, unless you’re having an affair with a colleague. 😂

You got to look for your “true purpose” whatever it is, inside of you and pursue it with uncompromising passion as if your life depended on it – because it does.

Don’t get me wrong- It’s important to do well in all areas of life and accomplish success, and realize our full potential in every role (personal and professional) that we fulfil, however we need to realize they only give us an identity.

So there, now if you’re a manager, you have a good speech to give your disgruntled staff at increment time.

Good luck with that! 🙏😂

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