Tuesday, June 30

I Feel Happy!

Occasionally in the boating community I meet a curmudgeon, 'an angry, surly, mean' individual who wants to make other people unhappy.  People I call a^* holes.  I have met my fair share of them in my life.  I learned to hang up, walk away, and avoid them as much as possible because they seem to thrive on spreading their negative vibe.  I have tried engaging with them to see the positive but they rarely cheer up and make me upset.  So if I ignore them and walk away, I feel better.

I am a naturally happy and positive person.   Seeing the glass as half full helps me cancel out any negative people around me.   Being a rational optimist, I do not understand why some are so negative.

Happiness is more than a choice.  Once I heard, that I should just choose to be happy.  Who would choose to be unhappy?  Happiness is in our DNA, environment (location), community of people, life events, and circumstances.

It is in our genes.  Scientists after examining twins have ranged that happiness is tied to our genes from 33% to 48%.  I think that it might be much more.  Years ago my unhappiness, I contribute it to the State that I was in (full of old apathy, lack of action, and complacency), and certain people in my life.  Once I found a community with like-minded individuals, looking to the future, and a beautiful large warm State of mine.  I immersed myself in everything Texas (or South Carolinian): politics, travel, food, people, community, history, outdoors, drink, water.  I was happy again.

My maternal grandmother was a positive, up for most anything, happy, loving woman.   Being widowed for over 30 years, she did not have a large bank account.  What she had, 'was hers' and she saved.  She loved to share her talents of sewing couture, cooking for her family, and being there.   Sitting on her front porch, I have such fond memories of her laughter and wit.  JT's grandmother had the same traits, and he possesses them as well.

Pursuit of happiness is an often debated right that we are born with.  What did the writers of our Declaration of Independence from England mean?  Not such a hedonistic pleasure of being in the present only, but building a future of well being for all, an eudaimonia.  Provide a meaning to life and engage in life.  Do not just sail away from life.  Always sail to a destination to find happiness

James Madison wanted in the Constitution, "enjoyment of life and liberty...and generally of pursuing and obtaining happiness and safety" 
Patrick Henry: "Neither the wisest constitution nor the wisest laws will secure the liberty and happiness of a people whose manners are universally corrupt."
Samuel Adams: "Religion and good morals are the only solid foundation of public liberty and happiness."
(Learn about the brain in Harvardx MCB80x.org.) Neuroscientists have studied the brain, and tied happiness to a neuropeptide called hypocretin/orexin
"greatly increased when subjects were happy but decreased when they were sad." In addition, the study measured for the first time the release of another peptide, this one called melanin concentrating hormone, or MCH.  
"These results, in conjunction with the current findings, suggest that hypocretin administration will elevate both mood and alertness in humans," Siegel said. 
Simply taking a hypocretin/orexin or MCH pill will not work because there is a blood-brain barrier that blocks most chemicals from entering or exiting the brain.  Interesting to note that those two same peptides have been tied to sleeping, alertness, fullness from eating, and joy in different regions of the brain.

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