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It seems the Blogging world is alight with those of us currently pondering happiness. This post by Carla Coulson had me really thinking. Put this together with Gretchen Rubin's thoughts and I feel the need to write a few lists.

 (Image - Carla Coulson - Chasing a Dream)

Carla talks about the things that she needs to make her happy. Her Italian husband needed to get out of Italy after she felt she had settled in Florence and was 'living the dream'. So they packed up and moved to Paris. Cue the continuation of the dream life as they both found happiness and success in Paris. But a niggling feeling made Carla question what it was that they both needed to be happy. A list emerged that highlighted the important things such as Sunshine, Love, Friends, Grass, Good Coffee, a Garden and many more. A realisation followed that Paris was not making either of them happy. I am staying tuned to see what happens next.

It made me think about my own burning desire to travel and live overseas and what is is that I really need to be happy in life and with my environment. What is it that appeals to me about being overseas? Here's the start of my list

  • Culture
  • Mystery and excitement
  • Sunshine
  • Laughter
  • Family & friends
  • New challenges
  • Doing work I love
  • Good food and shopping
  • Entertaining friends
  • A wardrobe of lovely dresses and heels
What I find really interesting about all this is that without realising I started my own journey to environmental happiness. A couple of months ago I tipped my comfortable life upside down and moved house. I had been living in suburban happiness with my long time man S, when I realised though I was happy in our relationship, I wasn't happy with the environment in which we lived. So I packed up and moved myself to the inner city. I now live in a 2 bedroom apartment on the 8th floor overlooking the city in inner city leafy suburb of South Yarra. Yes S and I survived the move and we see each other most days of the week. This change of scenery has done wonders for my happiness levels and surprisingly for our relationship too. Being happy within myself makes me happier to be around and easier to be with!  

I never realised how important our environments are in reflecting our inner selves. For me the space I live in and the area that represents the immediate lifestyle on offer makes a difference to how I feel in general and how I feel about myself. It is a reflection on who I am am, and what I have achieved in life. The struggles and sacrifices I have made along the way have made me the person I am and allowed me to get to a certain level of comfort and lifestyle. These things are what makes me 'me' and the space I live in is so much a part of that.

The view from my balcony and lounge is one that fills me with happiness. This space feels like me and represents the things that currently make me happy. (I know this will change overtime and look forward to what the next chapter shapes up to look like.)

What makes you happy? If you could live anywhere and do anything what would it be? It does not have to be forever, just for now. What's on your list? Does your environment change your mood?


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