How To Be Happy

I’m writing you on the plane ride back from Australia after spending the past month working and traveling on the other side of the world. One of the highlights of my time away was spending five days in Bali. I love Bali, so much so that I’ve gone four times. It’s hard not to love Bali – the beautiful land, delicious food, (I gotta tell you the raw cacao desserts in Ubud are orgasmic!), warm weather, luxurious spas, and decadent pool villas.

But the reason I am called back to Bali over and over again is because of the island’s tremendous spiritual energy. There is a heightened vibration that is quite easy to tap into that is generated by the land and the Balinese people.  They are contagiously happy for no apparent reason that many of us could detect.

How are they so happy?

Sure they live on a magical island but from my pov and from talking to many Balinese people, they are happy because:

They put God first. Their spiritual practice, which for most is the Hindu religion, is of utmost priority – before their relationships, job, body, or anything else. They pray multiple times a day and make beautiful offerings to the Gods out of bamboo and flowers. Everywhere you look in Bali there are meaningful symbols that remind them of the spiritual world. Because of this spiritual focus, they are less distracted by ego-based desires. Therefore, they are more focused on treating their land with care and gentleness and each other with kindness and respect.

They accept ALL of life. One of my favorites symbols that you see all around Bali is the black and white checkered pattern that represents “good” and “evil.” Or what many of us may call “light” and “dark.” They do not hold unrealistic expectations of life/God of giving them only what they want. The Balinese are aware as humans we live in the “gray” area, meaning we have both light and dark inside. They understand that their primary purpose is to be aware of both and set the intention to be a good, caring and giving person.

They know that happiness is an inside job. And they LIVE this – it is not just a concept they get intellectually. They are not victims of their circumstances at all, which to me makes them incredible spiritual teachers. Many of them have so little but their joy is so big. They are so wealthy when it comes to love. They take full responsibility for their own happiness.
I know you know that your happiness does not come from anything outside of you, yet I suspect there is still a part of you that thinks that if only you had that job, relationship, money, body, or whatever that you would be happier.  It’s okay to admit it. We live in a culture that reinforces a fixation on external things.

The most effective way I have found to unravel my devotion to attaining any external goal that I think will make me happy is by taking lessons from the Balinese people and devoting myself to my spiritual practice, moving into acceptance and sourcing my own happiness.

My offering to you this week inspired by the beautiful land and people of Bali is:

Examine what you are truly devoted to. Whatever you give the most time and energy to becomes your God. Is your God another person, job, or thing? If so, time to change your religion.
Look at where you are not fully accepting the black and white in your life. How are you getting stuck resisting what you don’t like (the darkness)? And how are you not fully appreciating or seeing what is so wonderful about you and your life (the light)?
Remember you are the source of your own happiness. There is nothing preventing you from feeling the same kind of contagious joy that lights up the island of Bali. (Click to tweet)




Christine Hassler is an author, speaker, life coach and spiritual counselor dedicated to helping people answer the questions who am I, what do I want and how do I get it?  You can check out her website here.

p.s. I have an amazing retreats coming up this summer. If you are ready to shine your light but need some direction and encouragement on the what’s and how’s to do it, join me at Chrysalis.

  • Sndy

    Great article thank you! I defined my happiness as creative, positivity, enjoyment & love. I realized what all of these had in common was the present moment. When I was in the present moment, whether focused fully on a task, creating & enjoying what I was doing (even washing a dish) or simply loving a moment, I was fully present and that is when I am happiest. To me happiness comes through when I am in the present moment. I bring my happiness to circumstances and connections. Along with living authentically which to me means accepting ALL life has to offer. To know all of life is special & a miracle & has something to teach me no matter how it shows up in this moment. Thanks again!

  • Ehab

    Great Article I like it, and 100 percent true that its an inside job 🙂

  • Shirley

    What a gorgeous place to soak in the beauty too. What is the name of the place you are staying? I’ve been curious about Bali. Some friends hold retreats there. Seeing your effervescent energy here is contagious. Thank you for sharing your message from this place within you.

  • <3 thank you

  • Anne

    This is so, so helpful. Just got out of a 13 month relationship with a man who was never remotely the right man for me. I’m obviously still hurting, still grieving. But If I am honest with myself… from the very start… I was talking myself INTO something at about every turn the relationship took.