Happiness in a survey? Think again…

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Have you heard the news? Mid Sussex is the happiest place to be in the country – allegedly.

Yet another satisfaction survey has been undertaken to find out where in the country people are happiest. Is it surprising that a lot of cities are cast as less happy places to be?

Is this really about happiness itself or rather is it a survey which has wealth at its core?

I live in Sussex, I live in a coastal town. The town has beauty in abundance in so many ways: a fast-flowing, ever-changing river, a seaside promenade with two lovely, family-friendly beaches, a view of the South Downs. Yet, this town has also been known for deprivation, immigrant tourism and has often been used as a dumping ground by those in power for the wider area’s problem people.  We do not reach the affluent scale, unlike our coastal near-neighbours of Hove and Brighton. The mid Sussex towns and villages are often commuter-belt or retirement areas of the county. Delightful in their surroundings, safe, real hubs of togetherness for some of the smaller settlements. Is it any wonder that the scale of happiness is higher? Social housing, seasonal unemployment is very much my town, more akin to the findings of the larger cities in this survey.

What is happiness? How can it be measured in such a generic way? Surely one person’s happiness is another’s misery? Age brackets, living accommodation, salary, family circumstances and even the great British weather will all play their part in the answers to any survey.

This is not happiness. This is external happiness, it is the world around YOU having influence. We can let everything feed as an excuse as to why we aren’t happy. The word for me, has lots the true meaning. Take it back to the inner you. Forget about the outside factors. Are you happy? That answer tells a story. If no, then spend some time reconnecting with who you really are.

Learn about you: Re-view

                                Re-evaluate

                                Re-boot

I consider myself to have happiness as my central structure – never used to, far from it. Life experiences, often painful, have taught me a lot about myself and how being happy is very much a choice from within and has no influence from others. To be truly happy is to be happy inside, is solely about who you are, not what happiness is passed on via the medium of other people and material things.  

“Happiness is a choice, not a result. Nothing will make you happy until you choose to be happy. No person will make you happy unless you decide to be happy. Your happiness will not come to you. It can only come from you.”   Ralph Harston
Dream BIG, Sparkle MORE, Shine BRIGHTLY

Money, money, money

I settled down to watch dear Anne Robinson investigate the nation’s spending habits.

From the mega rich to those living off of the streets, how we view money often shapes modern-day life. Keeping up with the Joneses was the phrase I heard a lot of when I was growing up. The 80’s was my era – the fads and trends of Lois Jeans, Lacoste polo shirts, Ocean Pacific t-shirts, Sergio Tacchini tracksuit tops and of course the branded trainer. I reflect back to those days and think (apart from the actual fashion faux pas) I am glad I am not a teenager in today’s world.  The inherent need to have the best seems to have magnified a million times from my school days.  In the age of clothing that MUST be of a particular high-end name, owning tech of a certain status, how can the teenagers of today understand that happiness isn’t bought?

WIth all his wealth, businessman John Caudwell sitting in his 90 million mansion,  when asked to measure his happiness, he said ‘not very’ as life events have shaped how he sees life.  Despite all the money and lavishness he admits that it is the lack of a partner that dictates why happiness is missing.  He has spent, can spend on whatever he wishes, but as John stated, ‘money doesn’t buy you happiness.’

The sugar-rush of buying fills the void that is missing for many.  Just like chocolate, alcohol and cigarettes, a splurge on the high street is a drug, a drug that may well be the biggest ‘narcotic’ of the modern age. How many of us have a wardrobe filled with clothing that have not seen the light of day?  Despite the total waste of money, the throwaway society we live in sees the masses move on to the next ‘must have’ fairly quickly.  As a nation we are not yet content.

Happiness comes in many forms. For some being happy is in the longevity of being in a loving, stable environment, for others it is the more fleeting moments afforded by spending.

If more of us were able to find that longevity maybe our bank balances would be happy too?

Happiness is not a destination, it is a frame of mind.

See Miracles In Life Everyday

Dream BIG, Sparkle MORE, Shine BRIGHTLY