Sunday, March 13, 2011


Last fall Melissa mentioned a book she was reading called The Happiness Project. I thought is sounded interesting and picked up a copy for myself. One of the things I liked about the book was that it was broken up into months so I could read it a little at a time. First, I would not categorize this as a self help book. It's a book about someones year of setting goals and trying to accomplish them. However, you can gain prospective and even things you may want to do yourself. Second, I love the fact that she sates she is not unhappy but that she could always be happier. Yes, everyone can always be happier.

I found a wonderful talk given by President James E. Faust entitled Our Search For Happiness. Here is an excerpt that I enjoyed.
As the Prophet Joseph Smith (1805–44) told us, “Happiness is the object and design of our existence; and will be the end thereof, if we pursue the path that leads to it; and this path is virtue, uprightness, faithfulness, holiness, and keeping all the commandments of God” (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, selected by Joseph Fielding Smith [1976], 255–56).

The more faithfully we keep the commandments of God, the happier we will generally be.

Although “men are, that they might have joy” (2 Ne. 2:25), this does not mean that our lives will be filled only with joy, “for it must needs be, that there is an opposition in all things” (2 Ne. 2:11). Happiness is not given to us in a package that we can just open up and consume. Nobody is ever happy 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Rather than thinking in terms of a day, we perhaps need to snatch happiness in little pieces, learning to recognize the elements of happiness and then treasuring them while they last.

Now why do I think this is applicable to Healthy Wife Happy Life? Good question. With the name of the blog including the word "happy" I thought what why does being healthy bring happiness. I think we've all learned over the past year that there is a lot more to it. I know people who thought being thin would bring them happiness and it hasn't. There is a lot to finding happiness. I'm actually impressed by what many of you have chosen as your 30 point challenges over the past year. I think it's helped bring a well roundedness to the healthy aspect.

Healthy to me means, physically, mentally and spiritually. If I'm healthy I'm happier to be around, I'm more willing to serve others, I can have loving relationships with my family and friends. I can come closer to my Heavenly Father. When I'm not healthy I'm down on myself and cut myself off from others and the Lord.

So back to why I brought up the book and why I want to share it with you. She discusses the idea that growth brings happiness. "It isn't just goal attainment but the process of striving after goals-after growth-that brings happiness."

I loved this idea. So often in my life I've looked to the future but when I got there it didn't bring me the happiness that I thought it would. For the past 5 ish years I've really tried living in the now and enjoying life everyday, whatever it may hold.

As we are trying to make healthy choices in our lives now it's important to enjoy what we're doing. To appreciate the growth we are making and learn from our failures. Heavenly Father wants us to be HAPPY! If being physically healthy will help us to that he wants that for us. If by improving our health we can be a better mom, spouse, friend, help us desire to serve others and fulfill our callings at church it is a righteous desire.

The challenge, therefore, is to take pleasure in the "atmosphere of growth," in the gradual progress made toward a goal, in the present.


  1. Audrey this is beautifully stated. I do feel very blessed and happy right now but I had never thought about the idea that I can always be happier. I also loved the reminder that we aren't going to be happy all the time and that is okay. I think I really need to pick up this book.

  2. Well said, Audrey dear! I'll add my Amen! I remember not so long ago being bored with my life. The worse thing I had to worry about was losing 20 lbs.! I told God to bring it...and He did! I have grown and learned so much this past year! I have lost many loved ones. I just found out that my uncle, who has been my "stand-in" dad since mine left, is dying of cancer. Friday I spent his last birthday with him...they don't expect him to see summer.

    As sad as I feel at their passing, I also feel gratitude that I spent the time to have a relationship with them. They knew I cared about them and I have no regrets in not being able to tell them.

    Being Jake's mom and caregiver, I have learned more compassion for those going through the same thing. Not being able to get pregnant for many years also gave me compassion for those yearning for children.

    It would certainly be a challenge to "take pleasure in the atmosphere of growth", I don't know if I'm there yet. But I do appreciate the tender mercies from God, who sweetly points out all of the lessons...and the many, many blessings.

    As hard as some challenges are, they are preparing us for what is to come. I was told that I have a much harder challenge yet to come, but I have peace knowing the He will be with me all the way!

  3. Oh ya, and living a righteous life...that makes me happy! I've decided that you can be sad and happy at the same long as you're living right.

  4. Beautifully said my friend! I have constantly been trying to remind myself that true happiness can ONLY come from WITHIN.
    Last week I did not take care of my body the way I should and unfortunately I was not the only one who suffered!
    Thanks for sharing such a profound and much needed message!

  5. I agree: happiness is found in the process of becoming. Another way to say this: The day you stop dreaming is the day your start dying.

  6. I'm happy I read this post. I'm happy you wrote it Audrey, very well written. I'm happy I'm part of this group. I like this quote, "Happiness is not the destination but a way to travel down the road." You are right, if we are healthier it makes traveling the road of life a lot easier.