Happiness and Relationships

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Happiness and Relationships

Very recently, I have been asked “what makes me happy” and ever since, I have been thinking about it. My initial response was: “a balance between work and family life”. But what does that mean? How does that make me happy?

Firstly, I know about myself that I want to work; working brings me a sense of satisfaction and achievement. Being in contact with others through work is very important to me as it gives my life purpose; I see progress in others and working becomes very rewarding. Working also keeps me grounded and helps me in my personal life too. Talking with someone about anger in my counselling room, for example, inevitably draws my attention to how I handle anger, what my anger triggers are and what do I do when I get angry. I learn or re-learn along with every single client that I see, no matter what the presenting problem is.

Secondly, family life is very important to me too, it brings me joy and a sense of belonging. I know I love my family and I know they love me; I feel appreciated and valued as a person.

On the whole, if we are to answer “What makes us happy?” we need to know what happiness is.

The dictionary tells us that happiness is the state of being happy, “a mental or emotional state of well-being characterized by positive emotions ranging from contentment to intense joy”.

I already detect something when I look at what I wrote at the beginning of this entry. Whether is work or family life, I am happy when I am with other people and research into happiness confirms that I am not the only one.

Personal well-being has been linked with the way we relate to others and with the quality of our personal relationships. Relationships are crucial to our well-being, therefore to our happiness. Furthermore, dr. William Glasser, the founder of Choice Theory and Reality Therapy believes  that the cause of human unhappiness is one or more unsatisfying present relationships.

The following are some questions that will help you to gain insight into what “makes you happy”:

What brings you happiness? 

When do you feel happy? 

Do you like your work or you wish you did something different?

Who are the important people in your life? 

Do you get along well with them? 

When was the last time you laughed? 

Were you alone or with others?

Awareness about ourselves, knowing what we like and dislike can bring us one step closer to the sort of life we strive for, in other words, to that mental state of well-being or happiness. When we know what we want we can take responsibility to make it happen.


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