What Makes You Happy?

During the Thanksgiving weekend my mother and I conducted a simple, random (and I might add, non-scientific) survey of family and friends. We asked each person the same question when they arrived at my house. We asked them, “What makes you happy?”

Their answers were remarkably consistent especially when you consider not a single respondent knew what the other respondents said prior to their arrival.

The number one answer to the question “What makes you happy?” was, generally speaking, “Spending time with family and friends.” A few other answers included going to the beach, playing in the sun, reading a good book by the fireplace in the winter, sleeping late on a Saturday morning and so on. Yet by far, the number one answer focused on family and friends.

Warren Buffet, the second richest man in the world (net worth at $42 billion) in a November 23 interview with CNBC (“The Billionaire Next Door”) was asked to define success. Buffet responded, “Do what you love and do it well. That is success.” Then, Mr. Buffet added, “Happiness is not $1000 in the bank or $1 billion, but having those you want to love you, love you.”

Now isn’t that interesting? The second richest man in the world does not define success or happiness in dollars and cents. He defines success and happiness by doing what you love and having people love you.

I know what makes me happy. I am happiest when I am around the people I love and who love me. I enjoy being around my family. I enjoy being with friends. I enjoy the times of fellowship and worship I share with my larger family known as CrossPoint. I am happiest when I spend time laughing, loving, and fellowshipping with the people I love the most.

What makes you happy?

I think the reason some people are so unhappy is that they are simply pursuing those things that will never provide true happiness. Money cannot make you happy. Possessions do not provide happiness. Happiness is best defined by relationships.


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