Often my favorite part of The Oprah Winfrey Show was the after-show. I relished the time just chatting with the audience. The question I asked them most frequently was, “What do you really want?” And many times the response was, “I just want to be happy.” But when I would follow up—”What would that look like for you?”—most people had trouble getting past something vague about their children or their income.
As Dr. Phil always says, “You gotta name it to claim it.” I’ve been claiming happiness for a long time, dreaming big dreams and using the outcome of those dreams to bring beauty into my own life and to serve others.
Service, I gotta say, is my biggest reward and brings me enormous happiness: surprising other people with unexpected, needed and sometimes just-for-fun support.
What else does happiness look like for me? It literally looks like my own backyard, glowing in setting sunlight or fogged with mist from the Pacific. Every time I look at my yard, I get a thrill of delight.
Same goes for…
—Delicious food from my garden. (Today for lunch I had a bowl of tomato soup made with freshly roasted tomatoes I picked this morning. Mmm-mm #happydelicious.)
—Rolling in the grass with my dogs.
—Sitting on the porch with friends, enjoying an evening cocktail.
—Sharing a meal.
—Talking books with people who appreciate good stories.
—Taking a morning hike.
—Luxuriating in a steamy bath with oils and candles.
—Watching my South African daughter-girls grow into confident women.
—Teaching what I’ve learned.
—Knowing I am loved.
Bottom line: I know for sure I’ve “made it” ’cause my happiness looks like my life.
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