In a book club discussion, not too long ago, someone said, “I don’t read fiction. It’s just a waste of time.” The remark stung me a bit because I read a lot of fiction. But as is usually my wont I did not say anything at the time because, maybe, the person was right. Maybe reading fiction was a waste of time.
I had, however, forgotten all about the discussion and was merrily going on with my fiction reading routine, until something brought the subject back to my attention. Not surprisingly, I turned to the Internet for answers and found that reading fiction, especially literary fiction, made you a better person indeed. There is even a published study and a review that talk about how reading fiction is good for you, even more than reading non-fiction.
My faith in fiction being restored, I then decided to look into my own experiences to figure out how reading has helped me.
A quote from a popular Hindi movie goes:
“When your friend fails, you feel bad… but you feel worse when your friend comes first.”
A lot of people will agree with this. I know because I do.
To be truly happy for others is something very few people can do. How a person reacts to other people’s success is a true measure of how satisfied a person is with his or her own life. Usually another person’s success has little or no bearing on your life, and you yet you can’t be happy for the person, because that person’s success reminds you of your own failures.
Most people will agree with me when I say that being happy is simultaneously the easiest thing and the most difficult thing. While some find happiness in the simplest of things, there are others who are unhappy even when they have almost everything. It’s no surprise, therefore, that the search for happiness is one of man’s oldest quests.
Today’s man is no different. We are always striving to be happier than we were the day before. But, unfortunately we don’t always succeed. In reality, we are mostly less happier than we were the day before because the past is usually remembered with fondness, and the present always seems like a tough time. So, here are three things that I am doing to be happy, and you can try them too.