My Biography-The Path to Happiness
The true measure of a successful life is your level of happiness
My name is Wanda and I’m 36 years old. On the surface my life appears quite good. I married my high school sweetheart and we’ve been together for almost 20 years.
He is my best friend. We have two wonderful children together. We are both professionals, live in a nice house that’s in a great neighborhood, and have loving friends & family. The “picture perfect” life or so it seems…
My Challenging Past
But life wasn’t always this way for me. My childhood certainly had its challenges. I was born into a family that had very little money and with that came a lot of insecurity, fighting and worry.
Both of my parents had troubled childhoods, and despite their greatest efforts of love and support, they would often fall victim to their childhood skeletons. As a result, and without them being aware of it, I grew up often feeling afraid of the world. I witnessed major financial issues, mental disorders, drug/alcohol abuse, suicides, just to name a few.
That being said however, it wasn’t always bad and I know now that my parents tried their best, despite their own difficult circumstances. In fact, I do remember some precious moments when my parents made me feel hopeful about my life.
I could feel, with every cell in my body, they believed in me. They knew that I’d be the one to change things for the better. Their unwavering faith in me made me believe in myself.
At the sweet age of 11, I vividly recall waking up one morning at 5:30 am. The house was very still as everyone was sleeping. I kneeled down by the side of my bed and prayed for a wonderful life.
In that moment of prayer, I made a promise to myself to work hard and create a good life. At that time, my idea of a good life included an education, money, a nice house, a husband and kids. Well, about 20 years later, I achieved all of those things.
So, since I got everything on my wish list, I should feel happy and satisfied forever more, right? Well, that’s not true at all. Please don’t get me wrong, I do enjoy the comfort of a loving family & friends and a nice home, but a big piece of the puzzle felt missing.
The Happiness Puzzle
In this society we are made to believe that happiness comes when you obtain the house, the car, the career, the money, and the kids. But, I’ve discovered, and I’m sure others have too, that this is NOT the recipe for happiness. In fact, I remember often feeling stressed and overwhelmed trying to juggle being the perfect mom, the perfect wife, the perfect employee, having the perfect house and kids, etc.
There’s no way to keep juggling “perfection”, not for any length of time. Sooner rather than later, the balls will hit the ground. Things will cave in and you’ll finally collapse under such false social pressure. This is not the recipe for happiness; rather it’s the recipe for despair.
I was left asking “where are you happiness?” Well, a combination of factors in my life made me finally realize the true meaning of it all; the secret to happiness. The most influential factors included my childhood, my career, and my precious children. Together, they’ve helped me see the path to happiness and below are how they did it.
My Path to Happiness
First, my childhood was challenging but rewarding. Today, I can honestly say that I love and appreciate my parents and my childhood experiences. In fact, without it, I wouldn’t be who I am today. Most importantly, my childhood taught me that no matter what your circumstance, you can change it if you believe in yourself. I also learned how to love without judgment or discrimination.
Secondly, my job was a large contributing factor. After working in healthcare for 12 years on the Western side of the world, I discovered that so many people are sick and depressed. They are looking to healthcare workers for wellness and a happy pill.
But, despite all medical effort, many people remain physically, mentally, and/or emotionally sick. Why is this so? Can anything else be done to help them? What piece is missing from the healthcare puzzle?
What I discovered is that Western medicine does play a helpful role in healing, but it is overlooking a valuable piece in treatment. It rarely, if ever, takes into account the role of the mind and spirit. The approach is often geared towards treating the symptoms only and not looking at the “whole” person-mind, body, and spirit.
I truly believe that the mind and spirit play a crucial role in the overall health and wellbeing of a person. Inevitably, my job pushed me into the world of holistic medicine and spirituality. I’ve immersed myself in this world and it has been truly awakening.
I finally got a “whiff” of happiness that I’d been searching for my whole life. This holistic/spiritual path has opened my eyes wider than they’ve ever been, leaving me with a broader understanding of humanity, a deeper sense of self, and a profound appreciation for life.
Thirdly, my beautiful children have contributed greatly to my path to happiness. In my opinion, children are the greatest teachers on this planet. Just stepping back and watching them reveals their innate joy and curiosity for life.
They don’t care what brand of clothes they’re wearing. In fact, they’d rather be naked. They look in the mirror and smile at the pure beauty looking back at them.
There’s no negative judgment about their weight, height, or any other imperfection. Something else that’s incredible is what children learn within the first few years of life; how to walk, talk, feed themselves, etc. Can you image having to learn these as an adult? It would be utterly daunting and it would take a tremendous amount of time and effort.
Children, on the other hand, handle these tasks with pure enthusiasm and faith. Our children remind us of the freedom you can experience when you stop judging everything and everyone, including yourself. They just know that life is supposed to adventurous and there is nothing to fear because, no matter what, everything is going to be okay. The bottom line is that children teach us that joy should be our primary goal in life.
What is The Happy Beacon?
The Happy Beacon is symbolic. It’s a lighthouse build with the pure intention to help guide us to the land of peace, joy, and happiness. It stands strong and will burn its light eternally in order to help those of us who are lost at sea and wanting to find our way home.
Let us all join together, on one gigantic ship, and steer straight for the Happy Beacon; to our happy homeland.