A Gutful Of Happiness
There are always new announcements about happiness.
Gurus will tell you to empty your mind, while smooth snake oil salesman say the Universe will do it all for you. Others tout religious solutions, endless seminars, happiness packages, breakthroughs, and never before revealed psychological techniques. Though sometimes conflicting, they all have something to say about this significant topic.
Now, just to add another ingredient to the mix, there’s another possible approach and it lives in you. More specifically, it thrives inside your gut. It may take a big leap of imagination to connect your gizzards with happiness, but then the critters that live in and are a natural part of you have all sorts of tricks up their microbial sleeves.
There is growing evidence to suggest that gut bugs can influence our mood state and overall health in ways we’ve never dreamt of (and perhaps never wanted to either). Distressing as it was, consider the last time you had the runs. I bet my bottom dollar your happiness had well and truly fled that desperate situation and no doubt your gut bugs weren’t happy either.
It’s a complicated area. But it seems a happy gut public offers a knock on affect to your overall disposition. So much so that, in mice at least, a switch in gut bacteria can turn highly anxious, uptight mice into jolly, outgoing rodents hoping to swing by your place tonight to pick you up at eight for a rather special date.
Given the similarities between some mice and men, does that suggest we should all be guzzling probiotics by the gallon as a way to boost our happiness? Would a happy gut really fix us up?
It’s still early days. But, like all the other advice, there may be something in it. Yet, happiness is and always will be highly individual.
If it’s happiness we are after in the form of good times and feeling footloose and fancy free, then we better face the fact that it will always be a moving feast. While, satisfaction (the ultimate form of lasting happiness) requires something else again.
If we live a meaning rich life that’s focused on living with character and personal purpose deep satisfaction is a potential for everyone. Yet, as easy as these things are to say, living well takes effort and plenty of reflection. Whereas, downing a hopeful bottle of Acme’s Super Colon Tickling Probiotics offers a nice quick fix.
Actually, it’s little wonder so many people are unhappy. Because, when it comes to fulfilling happiness, there is no last minute swallow or sudden impact satisfaction. Life calls us to live richly with awareness and compassion and that will always be the narrower way.
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