The Pursuit of Happiness #1 – Changing My View

Welcome to the new Wednesday series entitled The Pursuit of Happiness. This series, we will be studying what happiness has meant throughout the ages, and trying to discover within ourselves what it means to each of us.

As usual, I don’t have a step-by-step agenda for this new series yet. It will depend on what we discover on our path to happiness. A primary reason for this new series is to discover why happiness has been too absent in much of my life.

If I had to sum of my current emotional state in one word it would be

Disappointment

  • I am disappointed in how parts of my life have played out. I have had successes, but the failures just seem to overshadow them.
  • I am disappointed about some of the paths I have taken in life and some paths I failed to take.
  • I am disappointed that happiness has eluded me far too often.
  • I am disappointed in the humanity of man. We just don’t seem to be capable of loving each other as Jesus instructed us. In fact, hate is probably more dominant in the world than LOVE. That is utterly disappointing to me!

That is a lot of disappointment that has dragged my happiness down. I don’t know how much time I have on this earth, but I want to spend the most I can being happy.

I kinda think that the series will be as much or maybe more into what makes us unhappy as what can make us happy.


For the second half of this first post in the series I want to talk more about how I think my emotions wheel will help guide me down the happiness path.

Click for a larger view

I talked about this emotions wheel last Wednesday, so I won’t go in to that again. (click HERE if you want to see that)

On the right side of the wheel hub is fear, anger, sadness. These are the negative emotions. Of course, disappointment as mentioned above is on that side. If I move out from there I come to dismay, and displeased. Dismay is defined as consternation and distress. Those emotions are further down into the dark side.

The left side of the hub is love, joy, surprise. Let’s take Joy and move out from there. Optimistic is something I always try to be but often fail. How can I make optimism happen, and what’s the next-level beyond that?

I imagine you get the idea now. By identifying what is causing our darkness, we can move to the other side of the emotion spectrum. Is it possible to change how we react to our emotions? That is a core question here. Since, I am just getting started in the pursuit of happiness, I have not yet tried to figure that out.

I think this new series has some good possibilities. At least it will be fun to try to make them happen. But, if I do will I be disappointed that I hadn’t done it earlier. 😳 Maybe this is a vicious circle I am stepping into… more on that later.