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One Surefire Way to Be Happy


We were on the airplane.  The 4 of us.  My daughter, son-in-love, my 19-month-old grandson and me.  And, we had no window on our row.

Have you ever ridden on a plane where you had no window on your row at all?  Not even part of a window?  Only the stark wall of the airplane staring back at you?

I can honestly say that I didn’t think that scenario was possible, but there is always a first time!

Now, you may think, why are you writing a blog about this?  Because there’s a beautiful lesson that I gained from this experience that I want to share with you.

You see, the adults were counting on the fact that a window lookout would help to keep our 19-month-old occupied on the long flight.  A window would certainly help him to be more contented, and would assist in passing the time of the flight for him and for all of us.

But, alas, no window.

As we were sitting down on the plane, we were remarking amongst ourselves that we had no window.  (Actually, more like grumbling!)  And, as everyone’s mind was focused around what we did not have, we noticed something amazing.

My grandson was sitting on our laps, ignoring our grousing.  He was actually leaning forward and peeking through the seat in front of him just enough so that he could see out the window of the row in front of us.  He was thrilled and ecstatic.  In fact, he was beaming at what he saw out of his corner of the window!  Airplanes, baggage carts, trucks and airline employees.  A hubbub of activity!  Paradise for a toddler!

You see, he had no agenda.  No expectation.  He didn’t know that he was lacking.  He didn’t realize that his row was missing a window.  He just took what he was given and appreciated every bit of it.

He was content in the moment.  The one surefire way to be happy.

You see, contentment in the moment doesn’t come from without, but from within. [button href=”www.twitter.com/PattyBilhartzMD” primary=”false” centered=”false” newwindow=”false”]Tweet[/button]

So, why does internal contentment in the moment foster a wellspring of joy?  Why does secretly ravishing the now bring such delight?

As I’ve reflected on this experience, I have discovered 4 ways that contentment right in the middle of the moment brings happiness:

1) ) If we are loving the present, we’ve momentarily put aside any upsets of the past.  Those annoying dings that we can’t seem to let go of.  The secret resentments that keep us from moving on.  The delicious regrets that are just too martyrly to release.  Miraculously, the serendipity of the moment overrides any earlier agenda.

2) If we are relishing the moment, we can’t worry about what is next.  We’re not thinking about a potentially future dire circumstance.  We’re not expending energy on a pointless concern that likely will never occur.  Our hearts are too full of “what is” to make room for “what might be.”

3) If we are celebrating the now, we don’t miss its intrinsic beauty.  We have a thankful heart.  We are focused on what is present, not on what is absent. Our hearts are full–of love and joy.  Alleluia is as close as our next breath.

4) When I bring contentment to the moment, I bring contentment to others.  My grandson’s unabashed joy caused us to abandon our discontentment.  We instinctively entered into his bliss.  And, in the process, we found a connection with the beauty of life that brought us a sacred serenity.

Oh, how pausing in the exquisite now propels us to our Higher Selves!  The place where our soul meets the Divine All-There-Is.  The sweet spot where our Spirit Self joins with Eternal Bliss.  And, that is the definition of happiness.  A calm but effervescing experience of knowing that all is always well, whatever life brings.

Whether it is a row on an airplane that is missing a window, or the searing death of a loved one, or any experience in-between, we can choose to view Life as Good.  And when that ever-present Contentment becomes our mantra, we are happy.

How have you felt the contentment of life recently? We welcome your thoughts!

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