“To be, or not to be: that is the question” is a famous quote from William Shakespeare’s Hamlet. Many of us studied Hamlet in high school, and I would guess that this quote still rings true for us today.
To be, or not to be. To me, this means how self-actualized are you? Do you know what makes you happy? Really happy? I know I do.
For me, happiness does not come from possessions but from inner peace. It comes from doing what I am doing right now—writing. It comes from helping clients in my chosen profession—law. It comes from seeing the beauty of a flower that I have nurtured. It comes from feeling the gentle sunshine on my face in the morning. It comes from watching the simple beauty and infinite grace of a monarch butterfly fluttering gracefully through my backyard. It comes from family time, especially time spent with my brother Andre, who has Down’s Syndrome. Music makes me happy. Singing makes me happy. Animals make me happy (especially dogs).
These are simple things that cannot be bought with money, simple things for which there is no monetary value or equivalent.
I did not feel this way when I was younger. I guess you could say my wants and needs have mellowed over the years. I no longer need nor want designer items. They don’t matter to me.
How about you? I want to encourage you to do an exercise. Sit down in the morning with your cup of coffee, and write down ten things that make you truly happy deep down in your soul. When you are done writing, think about how you can integrate as many of these things into your week as possible. For instance, when you get home from work, don’t turn on the TV right away. Instead, pop in a favorite CD or open the music library on your device and listen to your favorite song. Dance if you feel like it. No one is looking. You are allowed. Instead of taking a quick, hot shower this weekend, take a long, luxurious bath. Really reflect on your life, your loves, your happiness, and your salvations.
Only then will you know what it is to be.
Until next time.