The Meaning of Happiness

February 13, 2013
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What does it mean to be happy? It seems that this is another one of those questions that no one knows the answer to, yet I am determined to find it. So what is happiness? What is it that makes us feel that certain feeling that none of us can really put our finger on.

Of course there’s the simple, boring response that any scientist can tell you. Happiness is an experience that we know happens when there are certain levels of different chemicals in our brains. These chemicals trigger a response somewhere in our nervous system, and we feel what we call “happy.” However, that still doesn’t answer us. Even if there’s no doubt that that’s what happens, that still doesn’t tell us why those chemicals are released or those signals are sent. There’s no cause. That only tells us what happens, but that’s still not enough.

To find why we are happy and what that really means, we have to take a look at what makes us feel this emotion. To me, it would appear that it could be anything. It could be a certain activity you enjoy, or a memory of some event in your life, or maybe even a specific person can be all the difference in your life. Anything can make you feel happiness. So it still doesn’t tell us why. Knowing what makes us happy puts us at least a little bit closer to knowing why, and what happiness really means.

What does happiness feel like? “Happy” is just a word. It doesn’t mean anything more than a random jumble of letters that I decide makes up a word. Happiness is a rush. It is also a slow burn. It comes on all at once but it also builds up, like a plotline with intense suspense. Everything builds to one point. You might not see the steps that are slowly working together to make you happy, but they’re definitely there. Happiness is exhilarating and wonderful and unlike anything else, which is what makes it so hard to describe or understand. When you feel happy, that’s all there is. There’s no stress or anxiety. There’s no worry. There’s no concern for something else that might be happening at the same time. Happiness takes control of everything else. It is a powerful emotion, and there’s not much more that can be said about it besides that.

It seems to me that the purpose of our lives is to find those things that do make us happy, and then doing them. If there’s a certain person in our lives that makes us happy, we need to find a way to spend more time with them. Because if you’re not happy, you need to look at your life and think about why you aren’t feeling that amazing thing you want to be feeling. If you know that, then it should be a short walk to being happy. If you can find something that makes you happy, truly happy, then life will be a lot better for you. It can’t be something superficial, or something that only lasts for a day or two. It’s something that affects your entire life. It lasts. It burns inside of you and it doesn’t go out. That is happiness.

While I, and probably others, look for answers and try to know why we are happy, there’s really only one way to find out. You have to feel it for yourself. You need to go out and learn for yourself. You need to figure it out in your own way, and not let anybody else tell you what it is. If you want any kind of answer, you have to find it for yourself. So go out. Go find what makes you happy. And maybe if you understand it, you could come back and tell me. I’d like to know. I’m in the exact same boat as everybody else. I want to live, and I want my life to be happy. We can all go together. Let’s open our doors, step outside, and take a good look at the world. Let’s decide what we want it to be, and let’s go make it just that.

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This article has 12 comments. Post your own now!

THEARTIST07 said...
Mar. 12 at 11:36 am
LOVED IT! Amazing talent. And as a matter of fact, I ,of course with your approval, would love to use some of these sentences in the anti-depression stand that we organized in the Emirates (Dubai).
sangay olosom said...
Oct. 5, 2016 at 12:28 am
I really enjoyed it,couldn't suppress my urge to say wow! awesome.
Willow said...
Jul. 15, 2015 at 9:46 pm
I love this!
TARDISdriver replied...
Jul. 20, 2015 at 10:53 pm
Thanks. I'm really glad you enjoyed it. It sounds cliché but I am genuinely happy you said that.
aj97 said...
Feb. 20, 2015 at 10:06 pm
Ridiculously good piece. Using this for my research paper on the definition of happiness. Amazing perspective, great view point, overall splendid read!
suzannastevens said...
Jan. 27, 2015 at 6:19 pm
"Happiness is an experience that we know happens when there are certain levels of different chemicals in our brains. These chemicals trigger a response somewhere in our nervous system, and we feel what we call “happy.” I would like to use this in my essay but I need to cite a source. May I use this quote in my essay and if so what is your full name?
TARDISdriver replied...
Jul. 10, 2015 at 9:53 pm
I'm really sorry I didn't respond to this, and I wish I'd seen it. I've been avoiding this website because I've been really disappointed and unsure of myself and my writing. I know it's too late, but just for my sanity, I'll let you know that I don't mind you using anything I write and my name is Doug Johnson. I really do apologize that I didn't give an actual answer.
ravii said...
Jan. 13, 2014 at 9:05 pm
Hello, I was just wondering if you were American or not? I really admired this essay though. 
TARDISdriver replied...
Mar. 14, 2014 at 11:05 pm
Hi, I'm not sure if you'll see this ever because this comment was posted a while ago. Sorry. I didn't realise you'd commented. I am American. I have dual citizenship, however, so I feel it would only be fair to point out that I'm also British. My mum is British so some of my upbringing wasn't entirely traditionally American.
huovfevhio replied...
Sept. 7, 2014 at 9:37 pm
You give it away saying mum
musicalginger said...
Apr. 3, 2013 at 8:31 am
i really liked this great job! oh and i love your screen name=D  
TARDISdriver replied...
Apr. 9, 2013 at 10:31 pm
Thank you so much! I love writing, but it's really awesome when people like you say you like it, it's really awesome. Thanks. I really appreciate it.
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