On the first tee at a particularly difficult golf course, discussing the course with the starter, he wryly commented to me that “it is easy to play the course with a single ball – so long as you aren’t particular as to whose ball it is.” That is, when I hit into the rough, or beyond that to the trees and find myself looking for my Bridgestone E6 white ball with a “4” stamped on it, I may or may not find THAT ball, but in any event I will find plenty of errant balls to choose from in making my next shot. The rules of golf, however, to the extent I choose to follow them (throat clearing) require me to play my ball, or take a penalty and drop a new ball.
It occurs to me today that happiness is a little like that. I create in my mind the belief that happiness comes, if at all, in a particular shape, form, or fashion that I have imagined, or societal rules and norms have imagined for me. I can get so intent in achieving THAT form of happiness that I can ignore all the other possibilities. I am wanting the weather to be sunny and ignore the peace that a light rain brings. I am looking for a certain song on a playlist and stumble upon another. That is, perhaps it is easy to be happy, so long as I am willing to set aside those expectations and formulas as to what delivers happiness and be open to happiness that might come in other shapes, forms, and sizes.