This is an interesting question. How often do I find myself happy? I'm always happy unless something or someone causes me to be unhappy. I know that happiness is something that should come from inside. I believe that which is why I'm always happy.
But, if my daughter calls and cries about boyfriend problems, I couldn't say that at that moment I was happy. Or if my husband yells at me because I did something he didn't like I definitely don't feel happy.
There are, it seems to me, two kinds or levels of happiness. One is deep in your soul and your heart. That's the happiness that comes from inside and that is not affected by outside influences. Once you've achieved inner happiness, you won't lose it. When a cloud passes over the sun, the sun is still there.
The other level of happiness is on the surface and is easily influenced by what goes on around you. I have two wonderful friends who are dying. One has an incurable type of brain cancer and the other has ALS. Both situations make me very sad. But, I have that inner happiness to draw on when the sadness threatens to overwhelm me. It is also there when my sense of fun can take their minds off their troubles for awhile.
So you are probably wondering how I acquired this inner happiness. It wasn't easy. I come from a long line of poor-little-me's. My mother never had any health problems and yet she never felt well. She was tired. She had a headache. Or she was worried about money. She worries about everything and everyone. My father devoted 62 years of his life to making her happy and never made a dent. She didn't want to be happy because she saw sympathy as love.
My husband's family are the most even-tempered people I've ever known. That's not a bad quality unless it's all you have. There are no highs and no lows. I've been married to this man for 39 years and I have never seen him truly happy or angry or sad.
I decided that there had to be something in between. I knew people who were happy people. How? Why? I am a Christian and read the Bible and devotionals and I pray. I knew that God had created us to be happy. He wants us to be happy. So maybe there was something there. I read more and prayed more. My son was going to school and was a religious studies major. We talked about God and religion a lot.
I gained great incite from him. And from watching my dogs. My son said one day that Emma, our golden retireiever, was a perfect example of the love God had for us and wanted from us. She is always happy. Always. Why? Because we love her and she feels safe and loved and she trusts us to keep her that way.
Over time I realized that I had become like Emma. I was happy. Why? Because I have a loving God who will keep me safe and will always love me. That happiness does not depend on the money we have in the bank. Or the size and worth of our house or the clothes I wear. I could lose all of it and I would still have that inner core of happiness.
Nothing and no one can take that from me. It's rooted in my faith and in my own belief. Life is so much better when you have a happy heart.