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Jose Garcia

Corri Ditch

English 115

28 February 2018

Happiness in different spaces (revised)

Happiness is a feeling everyone gets at one point or another, although it might be hard to

identify, it can be very satisfying to know what makes a person feel that way. Throughout the

past few days, I evaluated my experiences of happiness and performances in different spaces.

Determining what makes you happy can help you become a better person and seek your true

passion in life. During the time I was analyzing my experiences of happiness I found difficult to

determine what made me feel happy. I looked closely at two different spaces in which my

perspective on happiness changed and later determined what it was about the place that made me

feel that way. I looked at the articles in the “Pursuing Happiness” book by Matthew Parfitt and

Dawn Skorczewski to get a better understanding of my experiences of happiness. I used the

articles from authors like Laozi Epictetus. Many of the authors in this novel are well-known

philosophers, phycologist, and spiritual leaders. These authors like Laozi and Epictetus helped

me shape my understanding of happiness and get a coherent idea of how my happiness changed

in different spaces. Everyone might have a different reason for why something or somewhere

makes them feel happy. This can be different for each person, but in my case, I found happiness

at my internship. In many cases work can be affiliated with unhappiness and being miserable.

This is sometimes due to the person not having a passion for their line of work. Finding your true

happiness will motivate you to become a better person and seek happiness within it. It was in my

internship that I learned my true passion for helping others with technology. At work, I am
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surrounded by people I really care about which was another reason for my happiness. The

different experiences of happiness I had were determined by the people I was around as well as

my passion for whatever it was I was doing in that space. In my case, my passion for technology

was affiliated with my happiness.

Some people might argue that money and materialistic possessions are the true meaning

of happiness. This is not the case for me since I never decided to work at my internship just to

get paid. I did it because I enjoyed working with the technology and helping others with it. In

many occasions, I always felt extremely happy and excited to show up to work. Once I began to

feel this every single time before I showed up to work I knew I had found my passion and my

true happiness. I felt contentment at work, although I am intern I still find myself full of

happiness when I am there. Money is not the reason for my happiness, on the other hand,

working on something I am passionate about is. Money is a physical object that will provide you

with temporary pleasure and not true happiness. In Laozi's book "The Tao Te Ching" he claims

"if your happiness depends on money, you will never be happy with yourself” (14). According to

Laozi, I am happy at work due to me not being dependent on money. My happiness at work had

nothing to do with how much money I was getting paid, on the other hand, I sought happiness in

helping others. Laozi also touches the topic of having harmony with others will benefit yourself

and your happiness. Harmonizing with others will bring you the happiness you might be seeking.

In a workplace environment, it can be hard to find happiness unless you are in harmony with

others and you find happiness in what it is you are doing. When I arrive at work I always looked

forward to helping others, never about how much I will get paid that day. My experiences of

happiness in different spaces change according to what I find myself doing, and whether I enjoy

it or not. I concluded that when I found myself doing anything that had to do with technology I
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would always be enjoying it and be full of elation no matter the environment I am in or the

people I am surrounded by. In both environments, I found myself I was surrounded by people

that I might have disliked, but I did not allow it to get in the way of me misunderstanding my

happiness and unhappiness. Writers like Laozi and Epictetus argue that true happiness can be

difficult to achieve, but to find it you need to look at yourself and your behavior. Your

interactions with others can influence your perception of happiness. Determining the

environment, I was the unhappiest with was difficult since I often found myself surrounded by

people I enjoyed being with. The place my happiness changed was in my dorm due to me living

by myself.

While being in my dorm I feel out of place and unhappy because I do not have the

friendship and bond I expected to have with my roommates. Living away from home for the first

time is a difficult thing, this can cause many people to feel homesick and unhappy. Before I

moved to college I always saw my family as my passion because I had them so close to me I was

always reminded that they were the reason why I was working so hard for. Although I am still

motivated to do well being away from my family makes me feel unhappy and being in my dorm

is what constantly reminds me of my lack of passion. Another reason why my experience of

happiness was different in my dorm is that I started off on the wrong foot with my roommates.

This caused miscommunication between us and lead to me feel unhappy in my dorm. I am more

active and happy at work while in my dorm I feel uncomfortable, timid and find myself unhappy.

My lack of passion for building a better friendship with my roommates is the reason why I

cannot feel contentment in my dorm. The lack of harmony I had with my peers was a major

factor in my unhappiness in my dorm. There were many things that determined my unhappiness

in this environment. My performance changed in these spaces due to the people I found myself
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surrounded by. At work, I was surrounded by people who were also passionate about technology

and helping others. During the four years, I had been working for the IT department at my old

High school, I built friendships and bonds that motivated me to seek my passion for technology.

Thanks to these bonds I always enjoyed working there and always look forward to showing up to

work.

After analyzing my actions in these environments, I determined that I would always find

happiness in spaces that I find myself doing things I am passionate about and enjoy. My idea of

happiness in school changed throughout the semester. I noticed that I will remain unhappy and

miserable being away from home in my dorm until I find a passion that will lead me to success

in my dorm. Authors like Laozi argue that happiness and self-content can be achieved once you

find your motive in life. Also making bonds with people on campus who are passionate about the

same things I am will help me affiliate my passion with happiness. In Epictetus book "The

Handbook of Epictetus" he argues that "so, remember, if you think things are naturally enslaved

are free or that things not your own are your own, you will be thwarted, miserable, and upset,

and will blame both gods and men” (88). Therefore, you shall find happiness once you have

freed yourself from negative thoughts. I realized that if I continue to think that I cannot find

happiness in my new home, I will be miserable all throughout my time in college. Becoming a

happier person will be determined by the people I surround myself with and the bonds that I

acquire. I would have never taught about stopping and thinking about my happiness in different

spaces until this assignment. In the various places I was I always acted naturally and did

whatever I enjoyed. Getting a better understanding of happiness in my life helped me

comprehend what I value the most in my life. After analyzing Laozi’s and Epictetus statements I

could narrow down what are the places I had positive experiences of happiness and vice versa.
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My ideas of happiness changed, I had always thought about happiness as anything materialistic.

This did not seem to be the case for me, I narrowed down many of the things that I thought

brought me happiness and determined that the people I was around influenced my ideas of

happiness.
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Works Cited

“The Tao Te Ching.” Pursuing Happiness: a Bedford Spotlight Reader, by Matthew

Parfitt and Dawn Skorczewski, Bedford/St. Martin's, a Macmillan Education Imprint,

2016, pp. 10–15.

“The Handbook of Epictetus.” Pursuing Happiness: a Bedford Spotlight Reader, by Matthew

Parfitt and Dawn Skorczewski, Bedford/St. Martin's, a Macmillan Education Imprint,

2016, pp. 88–95.