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It’s quite natural to desire happiness throughout our life and relationships. However, the pursuit of happiness ironically makes it more elusive to experience. Happiness is a byproduct of living a meaningful life.

As we reflect on our life and what we desire in our relationships we often settle on the simple idea of being happy.

Typically this translates into being free from worries, hassles, and burdens and experiencing delight, contentment, and joy.

These are all good things to desire. But focusing on our happiness is actually one of the best ways not to achieve it.

It comes after doing work that matters or making a meaningful connection with others. It’s a side effect of living a life beyond ourselves.

For instance, happiness can be found at the intersection of our passion and the needs of our community. It ensues as we offer our strength to bring more life and goodness into the world.

Likewise, in relationships, happiness doesn’t come by the mere desire to be happy. In fact, working hard to be happy only increases our frustration and blame. Even here it’s the result of growing together and finding a purpose beyond the relationship itself.

We quickly become miserable if a relationship only exists to make us happy.

Happiness comes from becoming the man God has called us to be, doing the work that matters, and consistently engaging in our practice of love.

Focusing on just being happy robs us from this very opportunity. It’s by not focusing on happiness that we actually open the door to experience it.

Happiness is elusive when you try to hold on to it. Let it ensue by first fulfilling all that God has called you to in your life and relationships.

Photo by Hian Oliveira on Unsplash

Dr. Corey Carlisle

Licensed marriage and family therapist and certified sex therapist - providing Christian counseling and soul care to individuals and couples, with a special emphasis on developing the masculine soul. Suwanee, GA 30024

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