First of all, I want to express my gratitude to Melissa. I’ve been worshipping her writing, values and soul for a long time now. So, the moment I read about this In The Pursuit of Happiness series, I reached out to her immediately, asking for consideration. Thanks, Melissa, for letting me be a part of this wonderful series.
In The Pursuit Of Happiness. Five words. A universe of meanings. Let me get started by defining what happiness means to me. Happiness is the peace of mind achieved once the war is over: the war between what I am and what I am not; the war between what happened and what could have happened; the war between my victories and my mistakes; the war between what I did and what I did not do.
I started feeling that peace of mind the moment I turned 30 -- that was four years ago. It’s still a work in progress. How did I get to that point? I guess that there are some key factors -- especially surrounding yourself with positive people who love you, karma and faith -- but at the end of the day, and to quote my beloved Diane Von Furstenberg, it’s all about the relationship you have with yourself. You have to find your own spiritual tools to deal with your feelings and especially with pain and uncertainness --
which are usually considered the biggest enemies of happiness.
Paradoxically, looking back, I now see how pain and uncertainness have played a pivotal role in paving my way to the peace of mind I currently have.
Layoffs, broken hearts, hospital times, bad friends, betrayals…all these events sparked the inner war I mentioned above. I cried and prayed and felt sorry for myself. I hated people. It did hurt so much. Did I say I cried?
But it gets to a point where you start seeing the light at the end of the tunnel. Hard work pays off, things get better in general and more importantly, life gives you the answers you were looking for. You finally comprehend that there has always been 'a master plan.'
At that moment, I became strong enough to make an analysis of what my life has been. That’s a major breaking point in the whole process: the moment I allow myself to learn about my acts, my silences, my mistakes, my words…It’s such an invigorating process! The more I learn, the more I understand, forgive and love myself and others. It’s like the 'happiness pipe' gets unclogged, and I allow myself to enjoy a pretty happy existence.
As I said, it’s still a work in progress. I have so much to learn and to live. But going through the process and understanding how it works makes me feel safe, strong, grateful and HAPPY.
--By Elsa from Cafe Society XXI
P.S. How do you pursue your happiness, friends? I'd love to hear your story, so feel free to send them to mellow1422 (at) aol (dot) com!
[Bottom photos via Le Love]