We all have had our share of unpleasant and unfavourable experiences in life. We plan something but life’s uncertainties throw our plans out of the window. It can be anything..a broken relationship, loss of our job or a new disease in our body. These things often catch us off guard and there’s absolutely no way to anticipate them.

And thus starts our long-lasting struggle with ourselves in the search for happiness. Our programming is such that we are greatly influenced by the society and the things that it considers as important. And when we lack those things or qualities we then feel pathetic and extremely discouraged for who we are. We are convinced that we could have done better, and so we make a decision to change ourselves no matter what.

Soon enough, we realize that our desire to be happy is not actually making us any happier. On the contrary, we struggle a lot and as a result become more annoyed with ourselves.

Upon introspection we realize that the only times when we feel incredibly happy with ourselves are the times when we completely detach ourselves from others. It’s not an easy task to do – to not care about what others do, think or say. But when you do manage to do it, that’s when you realize how happy one can be without even having much in life.

There was an old man who lived in a village. The whole village was tired of him; he was always gloomy, he constantly complained and was always in a bad mood. The longer he lived, the viler he became and more poisonous were his words. People did their best to avoid him because his misfortune was contagious. He created the feeling of unhappiness in others

But one day, when he turned eighty, an incredible thing happened. Instantly everyone started hearing the rumor: “The old man is happy today, he doesn’t complain about anything, smiles, and even his face is freshened up.” The whole village gathered around the man and asked him, “What happened to you?” The old man replied, “Nothing special. Eighty years I’ve been chasing happiness and it was useless. Therefore, today I decided to live without happiness and just enjoy life. And the next thing I know is that I have never felt happier before.”

One should not chase happiness and one should not force it. Happiness is like a butterfly: the more you chase it, the more it will elude you; but if you turn your attention to other things, it will come and sit softly on your shoulder.

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Riddhima Sharma

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