If one was to find people who are still at school and to ask them what they want out of life, a number of them may say that they want to be happy. And even if someone as to say that they want to do well in a certain career, it could still be because this can be seen as something that will lead to the same outcome.
The Same Answer
Along with this, one is also likely to find that people who are lot older have the same desire. If this is not the case, it can be a sign that they are already happy, and this is then not going to be something they desire.
Even so, if one was to go and find these people at another point in time, they might not be experiencing life in the same way. As a result of this, they could be consumed by their need to experience life differently.
It is not going to be hard for one to work out why someone would have this need; in fact, they might have it themselves. When one is happy, they are going to feel good, and this is going to cause them to experience pleasure.
One could believe that they have two options; either they are happy or they are unhappy. Their life is then going to be based around pleasure or it will be based around pain.
Thus, it is going to be normal for them to want to do everything they can to maximize pleasure and minimize pain. As far as they are concerned, the purpose of life itself could be to be happy.
It will then be necessary for them to do everything they can to avoid being unhappy and the pain that this will create. Now, if one is at the beginning of their life, they could be more invested in this outlook.
This can be due to them not having the same amount of life experience as someone who is older, and this can cause them to be more naive. They are less likely to have had the kind of experiences that will cause them to question how they believe their life should be.
On the other hand, if one was older they could see that life doesn’t always go to plan, and that it’s not possible to always be happy. One way of looking at it would be to say that when one is younger they will be idealistic and when they are older they will be realistic.
A Time and Place
Still, there is clearly a time and a place for both ways of looking at life, and even though someone who is older could be more realistic this is not always going to be the case. Instead, one could be at the beginning of their life and they may have had a number of different experiences.
It then won’t matter how old they are, as the experiences they have had will have opened their eyes to the world. And if they have a strong need to be happy, it could mean that what they have gone through hasn’t been very pleasant.
If one is a fully grown adult, the kinds of experiences they have had are not going to have stopped them from wanting to be happy. What they have gone through is then not going to make them question if they can attain this goal; it will simply make them try even harder.
But if they do have moments when they begin to doubt if they can fulfil this need, it could be covered up. What is taking place within them is then going to end up being ignored and their need to be happy will soon take precedence.
It is then not just that one wants to be happy, it is that this is something that is incredibly important. One will then be doing the right thing by allowing this to be something that consumes their whole life.
That is unless they are able to experience happiness, and then they will be able to settle down and enjoy what is taking place. At the same time, this could be a time where they will be thinking about how long it will last.
Therefore, out of their need to try and control what is taking place, they can end up missing out on the very thing they desire. If they were to detach from what is taking place in their mind, it would allow them to embrace the present moment.
Yet even when they have the desire to be happy, this can also stop them from being able to be happy. On one side, they will be avoiding the present moment, and on the other, they will have the need to do something.
What is taking place in their life can then be harder for them to handle, as they will have the need to experience life differently. If they were able to surrender, they may find that they start to feel different.
And as they believe that they should be happy, they can feel like a failure if they are unhappy. They may find that they start to experience life differently if they were let go of this need.
A Different Purpose
One may find that they will have a more fulfilling life let go of the need to be happy all the time and to focus on living a purposeful life instead. This won’t allow them to always feel good, but what it will do is give them something far more substantial.
There will be good moments and bad moments, and this will be a lot easier to handle when one is doing what matters to them. By doing what gives their life meaning, they might even let go of the need to be happy all the time.
If one has the need to be happy all the time, it can be a sign that they find it hard to tolerate ‘negative’ emotions. It can then be necessary for them to develop the ability to regulate how they feel, and this is something that can take place with the assistance of a therapist.
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Oliver JR Cooper
Oliver JR Cooper
Author of 25 books, Transformational Writer, Teacher & Consultant.
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That which is contained within these articles is based on my own empirical understanding and is true for me at the time they were written. However, as I continue to grow, what I perceive as the truth will inevitably change and as a result of this - parts of these articles may not reflect my current outlook.