As an indie author it is easy to get so caught up in all of the things I need to do to market my book that it is hard to find time to write. There is blogging, tweeting, facebook, emails, review requests, interviews...the list goes on and on.
I am not just an indie author though. I am a wife, a friend to many, a homeowner, a grandma (although I am childless by choice), a companion of two parrots, and have many hobbies. Like everyone else these days, I struggle to find time for everything. Worse yet, while doing one thing I feel this nagging guilt that I really should be doing another. And, always, I am trying to find happiness.
As an author I keep thinking that once my books start selling big time I will be happy. Once I have the series done I will be happy. Once I can stop worrying about income I will be happy.
As a human I sometimes think that if we lived somewhere warmer I would be happy, or if we could take nice vacations I would be happy. Perhaps if we could replace our worn out carpet and redo the hardwoods underneath I would be happy. If Dave and I could find more time to just be with other I would be happy. When (and if) we ever retire I will be happy.
In the meantime, time has taken away the vast majority of my life. Don't get me wrong. I am not "unhappy". I am generally quite a happy person, but I think all of us fall into that trap of thinking things would be "happier" if only.
If only I would lose weight, have money, not hurt, have more time...the list goes on and on.
The problem is, we look for things other than ourselves to make us happy. Even if we try to find it in ourselves, it is by "correcting" or "improving" the body and mind we have been given. Self improvement can be a great thing; self acceptance is even greater.
You want happiness? Do I? Then, truly, we need to stop "wanting" and start simply "being". There is so much joy in just being able to breathe, to blink. To be able to hear a child laugh, a bird sing. To see a sunrise instead of rushing around opening blinds to that you can get to the computer and begin to "do". There is not just happiness, but true joy all around us and within us.
We just have to be quiet enough to notice it.
What I am guaranteed is the beauty-right now-of seeing the color I painted my walls (it IS a happy color!), of feeling love in my heart for my friends and family, of knowing that my heart beats and my mind works and I can stop and read poetry any time I want to.
The miracle of being on this planet. What a sheer, simple miracle. Being here now and knowing it. That is happiness. If we clear our mind and simply look, happiness is there within us. It always was and always will be. We just need to allow it to be noticed.