Happiness vs. Joy
Where are your focus and strength derived from?
In life’s journey, we will all face different seasons throughout the trip. Similar to nature, seasons will come and go, but the constant remains that they will pass eventually. Some seasons bring success, adventures, and fulfillment, while others produce failures, mistakes, uncertainty, and loss.
The important thing in all these life factors is that we remain set on one thing: whatever the season brings, it will come to pass. Life’s circumstances will always end and often leave us with a sense of emptiness. Whether the storm, the wind, or the sunshine of the season brought us happiness or grief, we must realize that this too shall pass. Yet, no matter what season of emotion we are in, there is one underlying truth that no season should ever be capable of robbing you of, and that is joy.
Most of us today are caught in the rat race of happiness in life through our various mediums of technology and distractions. Happiness is something that we all experience in life, and most days are but moments that take external events or conditions to make happiness occur. Our happy moments can be larger than life and most often don’t last very long and leave us as children wanting the next scoop of ice cream or toy.
It is impossible for us to feel happy 24/7, and trying to do so will only create unhappiness because you will be subject to something happening to feel satisfied. Codependence on the emotion of happiness in many ways involves perfection in those moments where happiness stems from a relationship, possessions, success, or experience. And, of course, chasing after these happy moments is ok, as long as we remember that “What goes up must come down,” as the great Isaac Newton once said.
On the other side of happiness, we have joy, of course. Now, joy is not a word we hear much daily as we do happy. Joy, unlike happiness, is not a fleeting emotion but a state of being that doesn’t take pleasures or anything outside oneself to happen to experience it. On the contrary, joy will remain whether our internal or external weather is darkness, difficulty, despair, confusion, poverty, loss, or success. Our joy is never in circumstances or conditions, and nothing can replace it.