I had this discussion not long ago with someone via Facebook whom I’ll call Tommy to protect his identity. It all began with a status message he posted trying to find out different points of view regarding how people can find a happy place amidst chaos and strife in their lives. I’ll tell you now like I told him that it’s not always easy, but you have to learn to find joy in the little things. I tried to tell him a story to illustrate my point. I like to use the mustard seed to explain this concept.
A mustard seed is quite small. It can be as small as 1 millimeter in diameter. To put into context how small that really is, picture the point of a freshly sharpened pencil. The pencil’s point is roughly the size of an average-sized mustard seed. That’s about all it takes for some people to have bliss and be happy, and I’m one of those people. Their thinking (our thinking is), the best things in life are free; little things mean a lot. I don’t need a lot of grandeur to be happy. If I get grand things, that’s like ice cream on top of your sweet potato pie. The pie is amazing by itself, but a scoop of ice cream is a bonus. That’s how life is for a lot of us. Happiness is just like that mustard seed. But some people want more than that. The innate, simplicity of life itself is never enough. For them, it takes more than that mustard seed; they want their happiness to be the size of a basketball or larger. For others, even if you gave them exactly what they claimed they want, in precisely the manner in which they said they wanted it, they still won’t be happy.
Well, there you have it. This is the extended version of how I responded to Tommy on Facebook. He had a hard time understanding it. Most people’s answer essentially indicated happiness is largely based on our choices and our world’s view, an effort to seek to be perky. That’s the gist of it. The dictionary defines perky as a “display of excessive exuberance and cheerfulness; animated or bubbly.” I like that.
Tommy couldn’t grasp that. Our happiness is directly related to what we require to be happy. The more we demand, the more disappointed we likely are and the less happy we will be. If we stop and smell the roses along the way, we might find more happiness than we ever knew existed.