Did you make New Year’s resolutions for 2019? Was one of them “to be happier?” I don’t make New Year’s resolutions anymore, because they always seem to take me down a trail of dissatisfaction with myself. Furthermore, displeasure with myself leads to comparing yours truly with other women who seem to have it all—those who seem happy all of the time. I refuse to waste yours and my time by listing the characteristics of females afflicted with crazed cheeriness.
The Washington Post’s Kristen Clark Taylor decided “… to take it [happiness] down from its previously prized place at the top” of her New Year’s resolution list. In addition, Taylor has re-named happiness. She says, “I’ve even got a name for it [happiness] — The Happiness Trap — and I’ve become tangled up in its web more times than I care to count.”
Since reading Taylor’s commentary, I’m in solidarity with her conclusion that happiness is a trap. I believe she is exactly correct.
If I am happy all the time, what do I have on the horizon to make me feel happier? I mean if I’m a “Happy Harriet” 24/7 wouldn’t I begin to take my happiness for granted. Wouldn’t I want more and then more? What would true joy and contentment look like in my life? I’m not sure that kind of happiness is authentic. Where would perseverance and satisfaction for a job well done come from?
My belief in frequent self-evaluation and awareness would certainly fall by the wayside, that’s for sure. And what about learning new things? How would I know that I needed discipline for my life? If I am happy, all the time, there’s no need for any of that.
And, God forbid what would happen to me when a crisis came into my life without notice, and I had to do many things I’ve never done before, and maybe I’d have to cancel a long awaited vacation, or quit my dream job, or worse, be laid off. What then?
I firmly believe that 24/7 happiness is a scheme of Satan. He knows that it doesn’t exist. Therefore, if he can keep the desire for happiness all the time swirling through my mind, I might turn away from God in frustration.
On the other hand, if we take our lumps of coal along with our lumps of sugar, just think about what we’ve learned. Further, our heartbeats of life are steady, sure, and satisfying. Our spiritual and emotional growth causes us to bear fruit in the lives of others.
I’ve analyzed 24/7 happiness. It ain’t all it’s cracked up
to be is it?
 Kristen Clark Taylor, You don’t need to be happy all the time, The Denver Post Features section, January 5, 2019, p 4C