The Happy Pill

We have pills for just about every condition and malady that human’s can think of and yet we don’t have a true happy pill.

As doctors will readily tell you, when drug companies test antidepressants to win FDA approval, the results almost always show that a placebo (an inert pill or what we call a sugar pill) turns out to be just as effective as these powerful and expensive drugs.

It turns out the mind is the most potent medication of all.

So, here are a few “happy pills” which have only one side effect – addiction to them:

  1. Viktor Frankl survived years of incarceration during World War II and lost his new bride to death at a concentration camp.  Yet he emerged with the notion that life is still worth living and wrote Man’s Search for Meaning to drive home the point.  And, what is our problem again?  I often think about this when I have something big draining my happiness.  Take this in the morning and it puts big problems in perspective the rest of the day.
  2. We hate when cable and phone companies “bundle” their services forcing us to buy something we don’t want with something we do.  So unbundle the need to have everything make you happy when even one small thing can feel just as good.  Everything going our way is not necessary to be happy.  Just recognizing one thing that does will do.
  3. When friends disappoint, forgive.  The act of forgiving makes us happy every time we employ it.
  4. Dealing with life’s problems – not necessarily solving them – makes us feel empowered and therefore happy.  Some problems go away on their own.  Some cannot and therefore we must learn to accept but most others take much longer to be resolved so ask, “Why postpone happiness?”
  5. The most potent “happy pill” is making someone else happy.  A friend used to call me and say, “You’re a good man”.  Do a nice deed.  Try to surprise someone this very minute – an action that will make them happy.  The little known rule is that happiness is as contagious as a yawn.  You don’t have to be on the receiving end to get the benefit.

Sometimes medications, therapy and the warmth of a friend can do wonders, but when we find the need to be real happy real quick, try one of these “happy pills”.

“The greatest degree of inner tranquility comes from the cultivation of love and compassion. The more we care for the happiness of others, the greater is our own sense of well-being” Dalai Lama

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