It is a characteristic of the American culture that, again and again, one is commanded and ordered to ‘be happy.’ But happiness cannot be pursued; it must ensue. One must have a reason to “be happy.” Viktor Frankl
Our founders enshrined in the constitution the idea that the pursuit of happiness is one of our unalienable rights. Our founders were wise men in many areas, but unfortunately, here they gave us the idea that happiness is something that we can pursue.
But in fact, happiness is something that ensues.
Happiness means different things to different people, and happiness might even mean different things at different times. Happiness is often defined as a feeling of well-being and contentment, and that’s easy to feel when things that are important to us are going well. Unfortunately, that means our happiness is fragile and fleeting. We hold happiness tenuously in our grasp.
I’m talking about the sort of long-term, foundational happiness that results from a feeling of well-being and contentment with who you are and your contribution to the world. When you give to others, you give your life meaning and purpose. When you give to others, you connect with them in rewarding and fulfilling ways. When you give, you give yourself a reason for your existence.
Fulfilling your reason for existence is something to be really happy about.
Give, because happiness ensues from a well-lived life in service to others.