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#Performance vs #Happiness: Are You Happy?

By 24/08/2012July 9th, 2017writing

Happiness is Internal

When we were kids, at least in hinterland India where i was born,the quest for happiness didn’t figure on the list for our parents. They applauded when we performed, whether at school, or extra-curricular activities, but did not teach us how to be happy with ourselves and the world.

I believe this led to a sort of cycle where our happiness depended on others being happy with us. In order to keep others happy, we do whatever it takes– and this is considered a good thing.

Instead, values like honesty and positivity should take precedence, because they are the only things that bring true happiness, which is, after all, an individual state of mind. Happiness should depend on what is inside you rather than what is going on outside of you.

What does your happiness depend on?

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Damyanti Biswas

Damyanti Biswas is the author of You Beneath Your Skin and numerous short stories that have been published in magazines and anthologies in the US, the UK, and Asia. She has been shortlisted for Best Small Fictions and Bath Novel Awards and is co-editor of the Forge Literary Magazine. Her next literary crime thriller, The Blue Bar, is represented by Lucienne Diver from The Knight Agency, and was published by Thomas & Mercer on January 1, 2023.

I appreciate comments, and I always visit back. If you're having trouble commenting, let me know via the contact form, or tweet me up @damyantig !

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  • elroyjones says:

    Approval and happiness do not necessarily complement one another. We know if we’re meeting our own standards. As a much younger person, I looked for approval, which produced fleeting happiness. As you pointed out, approval generated happiness is a conditioned response. Happiness has come gradually with age and an increasing ability to be in the moment accepting it for what it is. Your introspection is refreshing!

  • A nice, thoughtful post. Thank you for sharing. 🙂

  • What is ‘happiness’? Joy? Contentment? Satisfaction? None of these or an abundance of all? Can happiness exist alongside pain? discomfort? strife? sorrow? insecurity? Disappointment? stress? Are some people born with a happy disposition? And always look on the bright side of life? While others are more sensitive to the gloom within daily living? For sure, some people can rejoice in being half-full, while other see the same as being half empty. We are all different and greatly blessed are those that always find happiness within the cut and thrust of daily living.

  • ERMurray says:

    So many things make me happy – the gorgeous rural surroundings I live in, my gentle & kind husband, writing – but then as jvonbargen said above, often unhappiness is caused by trying to search for happiness! The cycle you mention is definitely ingrained and hard to break – but I think we can & do. The challenge is maintaining that feeling of inner calm and joy. I love this post – thank you.

    • Damyanti says:

      Yes, we need to Be happy, not try searching for it. Happiness is all around us, it is just that we don’t open our eyes to it.

  • I try not to let my happiness be because of other people being happy with me and make my own happiness. But it’s like you said, it’s a cycle. We grow up thinking that and I gotta break it.

  • Arlee Bird says:

    I believe true happiness is an internal thing. We can have experiences that might contribute to that happiness and might make us feel good, but those wear off soon after they’ve ended. The basic happiness that comes from within is not easily overcome by bad external things and helps us get through the bad times to face tomorrow.

    Wrote By Rote

  • It’s a sad fact that most parents wish for their kids to be happy. I wish for my kids to be GOOD. Happiness will then come naturally!

  • jvonbargen says:

    The search for happiness is one of the chief sources of unhappiness. We must grow it under our feet!

  • Being grateful for what you have is a big one for me. We take so much for granted and get caught up in things that don’t really matter. Writing makes me happy.

  • Happiness needs to come from the inside. And mine comes from inner peace.

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