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Natural Awakenings Milwaukee

Letter from Publisher

May 31, 2016 01:43PM

Last night, as I tucked the blanket around my sleeping son and watched his peaceful slumber, I felt an immense surge of love in my heart, leading me to ponder, “What is happiness?”

So many things in life can bring us moments of joy. Perhaps the grand ones seem most obvious: venturing on an overseas expedition or achieving a successful promotion or raise. Surely, our hearts are easily filled by sweet and tender occasions like holding a newborn baby or experiencing true intimacy and connection in our relationships. Yet, even simple things like sipping a cup of coffee on a warm spring morning or taking a peaceful walk in the woods allow opportunities for mindful gratitude.

Maintaining a level of contentment can be difficult in this volatile world, where it seems the omnipresent media can overwhelm our thoughts and affect our perceptions of happiness. We are deluged with messages telling us that the key to happiness is to be wealthier, thinner, or to own more stuff. It’s easy to get sucked into focusing on what we don’t have instead of what we do have or into believing the false idea that we must have it all to be content.

There are many ways to embrace the best that life has to offer. In Judith Fertig’s article “Happy All Day,” we examine ways to infuse happiness into the common elements of life. Ultimately, happiness comes from within and can be cultivated daily by feeling and expressing gratitude for all those small, precious moments in life that we can so easily overlook.

Many of us remember the classic children’s animated film You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown! In one of the main songs, “Happiness,” the Peanuts characters sing of the little things that can bring pleasure, such as two kinds of ice cream or learning to whistle. Whether we are enjoying life’s simple, everyday blessings or accomplishing bigger, greater things, abundant bliss can be found by acknowledging the realistic notion that we all deserve happiness and must make time to create, notice and appreciate it.

With love, gratitude and joy,

Gabriella Buchnik, Publisher

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