The quality or state of being happy – Noun

Evan - Rancho Santa Fe, California
Entered on April 21, 2009
Age Group: 18 - 30
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The quality or state of being happy – Noun

As a junior in high school, I am constantly faced with a barrage of comments about college and life planning as an extension. Many of my peers have long shopping lists of what they need to achieve in their life in order to be a success. In today’s society there is a prevalent notion that states that success in life is measured objectively through a series of accomplishments. These goals range from starting a family, obtaining a ludicrous amount of wealth, having your name live on and immortalize your being through the ages. I believe that this way of viewing life leads only to unhappiness because it leads judging yourself and this leads to inevitable disappointment when these goals have not been completed. During the last few years I have come to believe that there is only one real standard by which life should be measured: happiness.

At first glance just wanting happiness appears to be an entirely selfish goal and one that has the potential to destroy others who stand in the way. This is not the case, however. With only several exceptions among millions, I believe each person to carry within them a moral compass. Shame, guilt, and remorse are the perceptible manifestations of the morality within each of us. We have all known these feelings at some point in our lives and are characterized with the unhappiness they cause. Therefore, to truly seek happiness a person is not able to harm another because to do so will prevent him/her from experiencing total happiness. Rather than cause disregard for fellow men, this belief system will result in increased concern and care for peers. Clichéd though it may be, it is truly better to give than receive. The joy that results from doing an entirely unselfish deed for another has very few equivalents. I know that, like most people that I have met, no matter what I choices I make during my life I will not be happy unless I can feel at the end of the day that I contributed my full being to my current effort and that eventually at least one person’s life will improve as a direct result of me.

Each person has their own unique idea of how to attain complete happiness. Only by following personal convictions will a person be able to feel that their life is truly successful. This could mean becoming an artist, a businessman, or submitting an expression of one’s beliefs. Happiness is the only accurate way to measure and live your life. This, I believe.