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Searching for happiness

July 3, 2013

Here’s a great idea…
In his book, Flow, Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi says,
“We cannot reach happiness by searching for it. ‘Ask yourself whether you are happy,’ said J.S. Mill, ‘and you cease to be so.’ It is by being fully involved with every detail of our lives, whether good or bad, that we find happiness, not by trying to look for it directly.”

In other words…
When we are in the pursuit of happiness, we often find it to be very elusive. For example, a child who wants to feed ducks may run at them; they fly away squawking. If, instead, the child sits quietly throwing out food, the ducks will gather around him. Happiness may be like ducks. Rather than chasing it, we can sit peacefully as it gathers around us. We can do this by appreciating and savoring our experiences as they occur. We can live in the moment.

Here’s how you can use this idea to have a better life…
Appreciate the details of your life. Enjoy a job well done. Relish moments with loved ones.

To Find Out More…
about personal well-being, check out Getting Our Hearts Right or The Personal Journey programs at arfamilies.org, like us at facebook.com/navigatinglife or contact your local county Extension agent. You may also enjoy Csikszentmihalyi’s more recent book Finding Flow.

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