In my late twenties, I find myself in a very interesting place. I, like many of my circle have accomplished many of our life goals earlier than we all have projected. Many of us have gone on to flourish in our fields and careers, started families, purchased property, traveled the world, etc. With that said, a looming theme has been found in many of the conversations I have had with these peers of mine. We have discussed contentment, happiness, and sense of feeling stagnant at times with certain aspects of life. This has lead me on an interesting journey. I now found myself attempting to define happiness, which in short has varied for most on a surface level. I have also established through these discussions that most of us could not define true happiness. This discovery led me on a deeper journey of curiosity, as well as a great amount of reflection within myself in attempts to pinpoint happiness.
Therefore, to start, this is far from us saying anyone is unhappy, we are simply looking to possibly define happiness as it applies to this day and age. A common concern that we run into with happiness in our world now is the need for “Now”, and instant gratification. Today joy and happiness seem to come in short more frequent doses; kind of like a quick high. This is actually where I see the greatest issue. We as people struggle to find lasting happiness, and have transitioned from finding elation in the small things in life to relying on these small joys for points of happiness. We went from being able to appreciate said smaller things to having a dependency on these things due to not being fulfilled in our everyday life. Struggle to align and take pride in the routine of our day to day lives is common as well. I have heard many stating they don’t feel fulfilled with work. They don’t feel that connection to what they’re doing, nor do they feel the appreciation or buy in into what they are doing. Some have said they had it and lost it through changes with work or life; while others have stated it was never there. However, one thing I do know, there is a sense of feeling undervalued, and the feeling of a worker drone in this rat race is all too common.
After this revelation, I found myself saying well I know what and why people are feeling the way they do, but how do they move past it? Which I found to be a tough question honestly. Mainly because these are accomplished twenty somethings, whom as I mentioned, have garnered assets, grown, become more cultured, reached financial stability, and at the naked eye would seem to have the world as their oyster. This took me on a passage of reflecting on whom I know who seems to be at their happiest. As well as, when was I or when do I seem to be my happiest? And, that’s when it finally hit me. Over the last few months, I have heard unparalleled joy in people who spoke on new ventures they were developing. I said to myself, is it really that simple? At that point, I really took a deep dive into whom it was and what they were doing, as well as myself, and simply put, the answer was yes. It is actually that simple. The people who I knew that were the happiest were all creating something, and that’s when I also find myself the happiest.
Finding this conclusion was actually euphoric for me. So much so that I planted ideas in certain people’s subconscious in hopes of seeing if there was genuine validity to this theory. The outcome was far better than I expected. The people who had begun to create seemed to be immediately reinvigorated. They spoke to things with much greater passion, and seemed to be unfazed by outcomes that may have normally deterred them. This was truly a phenomenal thing to witness. And honestly, when I sat back and thought on it, it WAS all relatively simple. We have a greater personal connection and self-pride in the things we are involved in. We want to nurture it. We give it far more attention than other things. We find bliss when it does well and we take it to heart when it doesn’t. This led me to the belief “Creation is the key to happiness”. I truly believe this can be proven on so many different levels. We idolize entrepreneurs, with most simply thinking it’s because of the freedom they have. But that’s not it. We mistake the feelings we get from them as freedom but it’s actually the feeling they are giving off from being able to enjoy and pride themselves in what they have developed. I tie this into a few things I have seen and read recently. I recently saw a video of Navy Seal Admiral William H. McRaven giving a speech about making your bed every morning setting the tone for accomplishment throughout your day and allowing you to complete other tasks as a domino effect. The speech was impressive and tied back to goals leading to achievement, which in a sense would lead to happiness. However, that brought me back to our initial concern. The second thing I thought of was something I once read. It broke down a feeling for Black Men to have a need to procreate due to not feeling as if they had ownership within their lives. This being due to general things in society and the Black Man being undervalued by various aspects of life. Which spanned from general society, to “White America”, to the business world, and then even finally pointing out an under appreciation with some Black Women at times. Now see, I happen to view everything in life as Yin and a Yang. Even when it comes down to views and perceptions on things. I say that to say, I can’t necessarily agree with that view or argument because I don’t think it applies to just Black Men. Given everything I have just spoke on I see giving life and parenting falling into the theme I have addressed. I stated this can apply to various aspects on various levels, and I think that is no different. I believe becoming a parent, the creation of life, is another form of that feeling I am speaking of. And think about it, what greater creation can we have while walking the earth? What would you take greater pride in? What would you nurture more? What would you give more of your attention to?
So I wrap this by saying yes, I am confident in my findings that the key to happiness in our day in age is through creation. I also say I don’t think the scale of said creation matters. It can be small or grand. A detailed process or a leap of faith on a whim. It could span from something as simple as a recipe, to something as everlasting as starting a family. But nevertheless, creation will give you a point of happiness that I feel is missing in many in the world we live in, and I recommend it as a starting point if you find yourself in that space.