Tuesday, September 9, 2014
What I have so far learnt about happiness
Carlos, my business partner has taught me that to discover happiness, you must train yourself each day to overcome the pain, hatred and anger that reside in our hearts. Two weeks ago as we worked on a project that was going horribly wrong already, my cellphone was snatched from me without noticing, as we walked down the busy streets of Kampala, Uganda.
Carlos interrupted the conversation to ask if I had my cell, on checking it was gone. Without hesitation, he instinctively ran back shouting “thieve” at some random guy, who to my surprise handed over the phone.
As we resumed our conversation, I told him how bad my day was, with a predicament of how much worse it could possibly get. Carlos smiled and said, “One way to look at it is, you've had an awesome day because I just helped you get back your phone.”
A few minutes later, he put a coin into a beggars cup. When I asked him why, he responded “You see you have to be good to the world. Genuinely good without expecting a thing in return.”
Later that evening we found ourselves taking a tour around the majestic Old Kampala mosque that overlooks Kampala city. My current perspective to life at 5 pm; it was good.
Which was a huge shift in mental attitude over a time cycle of ten hours. As we sat in the courtyard talking about life and what makes us happy. I realized that Carlos is almost always genuinely happy because he constantly and consistently aspires for that state of mind, so much so that he never lets himself stay mad at anything for more than two minutes.
I have learnt that happiness does not require a situation before it happens. In truth we are likely to wind up miserable if our pursuit of it is limited to a reward of future value.