In Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, the third installment of the series, Albus Dumbledore, the headmaster of Hogwarts, announces to the students, “Happiness can be found, even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light.” These words stayed with us for their significance in our daily lives. They serve as a reminder that happiness isn’t controlled by things, people, or circumstances. No matter how difficult the road ahead is, happiness can still be found; like courage in the face of failure. But the real question is how? And this question becomes even more perplexed when a pandemic is at your doorstep. How would you go around an outbreak and still manage to find happiness when your life is stuck between the four walls of your home?
Before trying to solve this mystery, you should know something about happiness first. Being happy isn’t about carrying a smile on your face. It is a conscious choice you make about how you want to live, every single day. In the wake of the pandemic, perhaps this choice looks futile. You can’t meet your friends, play sports, or simply go out for a walk—the life you knew has ceased to exist, at least for a while. But this doesn’t mean happiness has become wishful thinking, it never will.
As Dumbledore said, turn on the lights. And this metaphorical light is nothing but your mind. ‘Turn on’ your mind, and with its light look inward to find perspectives. A fresh outlook can bring clarity and optimism, and at their cusp, you can find happiness waiting to get discovered. In this feature, Soulveda shares such perspectives that can help you in your search for happiness, especially in these troubled times.
Focus on the brighter side
Dwelling on what is wrong in your life takes away the focus from what is going right. So, whether it is a nation-wide lockdown, a physical injury, a financial setback, or just a new year resolution going astray, distract yourself from what is missing and focus on what is present. As they say, gratitude can turn little into plenty. And studies prove, expressing gratitude in what you have can change your brain structure, lead to happiness, and ultimately change your life.