Happiness is a state of mind. It is not only having what we want, but wanting what we have. The grand essentials to happiness in this life are something to do, something to love, and something to hope for. Many of us have come to believe that happiness is unattainable. However, many of us also have attained happiness by realizing that it does not spring from procuring physical or mental pleasure, but from the development of reason and the adjustment of conduct to principles.

Pope Francis encourages us to enjoy life. Here are some thoughts derived from his writings about being happy.

Be happy not because everything is good, but because you could see the good side of everything.

We may have defects, anxious and sometimes irritated, but let us not forget that our life is the greatest enterprise in the world. Only we can prevent it from going into depravity; there are many who need, admire and love us.

Pope Francis reminds us that being happy is not having a sky without storms, roads without roadblocks, work without fatigue, nor relationships without disappointments; that being happy is finding strength in forgiveness, hope in one’s battles, security at the stage of fear, love in disagreements; that being happy is not only to treasure the smile, but also to reflect on the sadness. 

Happiness is being around people who may not be your real family, but who love and support you anyway.

Being happy is not just commemorating the event, but also learning lessons in failures; that it is not just having joy with the applause, but also having joy in anonymity; that being happy is to recognize that it is worthwhile to live, despite all the challenges, misunderstandings and times of crises; that it is not inevitable fate to be happy, but a victory for those of us who can travel towards it with our own being and to stop being a victim of problems but become an actor in history itself.

We can be happy by crossing the deserts outside of ourselves, and to be able to find an oasis in the recesses of our soul. It is to thank God every morning for the miracle of life. Being happy is not being afraid of one's feelings; it is to know how to talk about ourselves; it is to bear with courage when hearing a "no"; it is to have the security to receive criticism, even if is unfair.

It is to kiss the children, pamper the parents, and have poetic moments with friends, even if they have hurt us; being happy means allowing the free, happy and simple child inside each of us to live; having the maturity to say, "I was wrong"; having the audacity to say, "forgive me"; it is to have sensitivity in expressing, "I need you"; to have the ability of saying, "I love you."

Our life is a garden full of opportunities for being happy; in our springtime, may we become a lover of joy; in our winter, may we become a friend of wisdom. And when we go wrong along the way, we start all over again, so we will be more passionate about life.

Then we will find that happiness is not about having a perfect life but about using tears to water tolerance, losses to refine patience, failures to carve serenity, pain to lapidate pleasure, obstacles to open the windows of intelligence.

Let us never give up, never give up on the people we love; never give up from being happy because life is an incredible show and we are a special human being!

By Tim Pedrosa


Happiness is what we all strive for, at the end of the day. Perhaps, it's the best thing we get in life, the one thing really worth dreaming about. But is not easy to have nor to keep. We must work each day at being happy, the change, usually coming from within and not from without.