Just be happy?

-- by Steve Goodier

In his book STANDING ON THE PROMISES OR SITTING ON THE PREMISES (Dimensions for Living, 1995), James Moore relates an experience that occurred in a New York art museum. One special thematic room exhibited paintings only of roads. There were depictions of busy modern interstate highways, big city crowded thoroughfares, attractive landscaped parkways, happy neighborhood streets, remote mountain trails and quiet country roads.

On one wall hung a large painting of an unusual road that had an ethereal, spiritual look, done in soft pastel colors. The caption beneath it read: "The Road to Happiness." Two women approached the painting. One of them was visibly moved and said, "Isn't that beautiful?"

But the other responded sadly, "Of course it's beautiful. The only problem is, there's no such road!"

I suspect she may be right -- happiness is not a place. It is not a destination. It is not a future port of call. The problem is...we want to "arrive" at a point when we are happy. We think "If only I could do such and such" or "When this or that happens, I will be happy." When we think like that, happiness becomes a condition we hope to experience in the future.

Writer Barbara DeAngelis says something different about happiness (REAL MOMENTS, BDD Audio Publishing, 1994):

"If you can't be happy now with what you have and who you are, you will not be happy when you get what you think you want. If you don't know how to fully enjoy $500, you won't enjoy $5,000 or $500,000. If you can't fully enjoy taking a walk around the block with your mate, then you won't enjoy going to Hawaii or Paris. I'm not saying that having more money or more recreation won't make your life easier. It will. But it won't make you happier because it can't."

You are already on the "road to happiness"! Look around. Breathe deeply. Enjoy. You can be happy NOW. Indeed, happiness can only be found in the present.

This is a good time to pause in your pursuit of happiness and just be happy.

Steve Goodier Publisher@... is a professional speaker, consultant and author of numerous books. Visit his site for more information, or to sign up for his FREE newsletter of Life, Love and Laughter at http://LifeSupportSystem.com.



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