I like these:
"Happiness is not achieved by the conscious pursuit of happiness; it is generally the by-product of other activities."
- Aldous Huxley
There are some people I know who spend too much time thinking about how to achieve happiness. I never think, I'm going to do [this] so that I may be happy, but rather make many small steps towards the things that I want - an education in an area (or two) for which I am passionate, for instance. That's actually all I'm doing right now. That's the closest thing to a conscious decision to reach happiness that I'm acting on. But when I write, I don't think about how it will affect me in the long run. Everything else is just stuff that happens - funny things, weird things, pointing out the illogical bits of commercials. We don't think, we just do. Well, we do think, but we don't think about how the thinking may or may not contribute to our own happiness. As a wise little green man once said, "Do or do not. There is no try."
This one reminds me of my "Life is But a Dream" short story. I saw the scene from a tv show or movie, but I couldn't remember which it is. 20 pages and one seed of a novel later, I wrote a story that no one has ever read before. It was a scene from Buffy the Vampire Slayer, globlets. From the unoriginal stems originality."Originality is the fine art of remembering what you hear but forgetting where you heard it."
- Laurence J. Peter
"There's no point in being grown up if you can't be childish sometimes.
It makes me sad to think that so many adults forget what it's like to be kids. Some spend their whole childhood and adolescence promising themselves to never become like their mother or father, promising to never be so strict, controlling, apathetic, negligent, or stifling. Even so, countless grownups grow up to mirror the exact image they once wished to avoid. On the other hand, some turn around and do the exact opposite, or close to it. They've actually learned from their parents what it is they shouldn't do. They improve, which is how it's supposed to be. You're supposed to do better than your parents and your children should do better than you; this, don't forget, is not measured by wealth or success. Happiness is the most important measurement.
The happiest people I know are the grownups who don't forget to be childish sometimes, who don't forget to stop and laugh sometimes. It's easier to laugh at oneself once adulthood is reached. When you're a child, there's too much to learn, to be afraid of, to seek approval of. I'm not saying being an adult discontinues these things, but they're easier to deal with when a person understands them better and has more control over them. Taming them is a choice.
It is so important for adults to remember what it's like to be childish, to not be serious all the time, to not TAKE things so seriously because very little in the world is actually worth taking seriously. Life is short, as any adult may know. During childhood, life was endless. Don't you think that acting childish once in a while may improve your happiness? ...and, consequently, your longevity? ...and increase your desire to live longer? What if taking childish moments and stuffing them into your serious adult life would transfer some of that "eternal youth?"
Not that any of this will prevent you from getting hit by a bus someday, but hey! At least you'll have had something to live for and therefore something to lose too! Oh, wait...