Original question from Quora:

How can I be happy?

Right now, Quora is my lifeline. I don’t know what to do or where to begin but I can tell you that I can’t eat, smile, laugh, or talk to my family. I want to be loved or liked by someone for the first time. Is this TED Talk the answer?

My Answer:

There are a lot of theories on happiness, consider this one of them. I tend to think there is one thing that makes people happy, but it’s a sort of strange thing.

I’ve never been super unhappy, but I know what does make me happy and I think it might help.

About a year ago I decided I wanted to be an author. In my day job I’m a software developer, so it was a bit of a leap.

Yet, it feels like one thing I’m supposed to be or do with my life. I feel compelled to be a writer, even if it doesn’t make a ton of sense from the outside.

It is part of my purpose.

Since then I’ve wrote a book and people have bought and read it. By that metric I’m successfully living my purpose.

That makes me happy.

Something else makes me happy…

When I decided to become an author, I also decided what what perfect average day is. I don’t mean the perfect day at the beach or a vacation or something.

I mean the perfect day you can repeat over and over again.

I sat down and wrote down my perfect repeatable day. Part of that day is writing every day. Part of that day is what I eat and who I hang out with.

My perfect day aligns with my life’s purpose.

Now, I’m not saying I’m living my perfect day yet. In fact, I’m not. I have a ways to go.

But, here’s something strange…

Over the last year my life keeps looking like my perfect day. I keep finding ways to mold my life to match my purpose and perfect day.

It doesn’t happen the way you think it would either. It’s almost accidental or automatic in a way. I don’t always think about it, but when I make a change often it aligns with my perfect day without realizing it.

So, to me finding happiness seems to have a lot to do with living your purpose in whatever that might be, every day of your life.

I can’t tell you what your purpose is, or if it will bring you joy, but finding it seems to be a good step in the right direction.

What is your purpose? Are you living it?


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