As babies and young children, we learned that a smile would bring a reaction from others—a smile, a giggle—happiness! As we reached our teens, we began to equate happiness with what others thought of us—we fit in if we dressed a certain way, played certain sports, or liked certain things. In our 20s, we began our search for our “soul mate,” and when that search concluded—happiness! In our 30s and 40s, we watched our children grow and began to see that our own happiness existed in other little beings, finding their way through this crazy world. Their hurts became our hurts; their successes, our successes. In our 50s and beyond, our children grew up and moved on, and we began to look for another form of happiness. We looked back on the life we created, and realized that while at the time, those things, people, and experiences brought us happiness, true joy might have been missing. And then the realization hit—you don’t find joy in the light of someone else’s spirit. True joy comes from within.

So take those words and seek out your own joy—not from someone or something, but from deep within. What makes you shine? What brings you immeasurable joy?

 

Mind, Body, Spirit, TCM

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