I think, to get to what my version of happiness is, I first have to get into what it isn’t. Too often I see mistakes being made in what happiness isn’t.
Being happy, to me, is not the absence of strife, struggle, conflict, hardship, or difficulty. Baby, that’s life. Trying to find a life devoid of those things is like chasing a rainbow-farting unicorn… and deciding one can’t be happy until that unicorn is found and befriended. Good luck, there’s no such thing – they call it mythical for a reason.
Happiness isn’t getting to do whatever I want, whenever I want. I was five-years-old the last time I truly experienced that pleasure. Happiness isn’t “easy” living, either; a sober, clean life is anything but easy.
Happiness, to me, is being content with what I’ve got. It’s being comfortable in my own skin. Happiness is being grateful for the life I have, or the life that was given me by my Higher Power after I asked for His Grace… Happiness is doing the best with what I’ve got.
… and when I need a reminder, a bike ride with my wife and friends will do the trick. Money won’t buy happiness, but it buys bikes, and that’s good enough for government work.