By Gail Davvis-Carter (ListenGive Writer)
The International Day of Happiness was created by the United Nations and passed as a resolution by all participating member states (countries). Why would a group of countries agree to pass a resolution for a Day of Happiness? The United Nations recognized Happiness as a “Human Right” and “Fundamental Human Goal”.
In 2015, the United Nations teamed up with international Producer and Music Artist, Pharrell, to illustrate the importance of Happiness through his popular song, “Happy”. Pharrell’s viewpoint was, “what would make a man relentlessly happy,” and the answer was in the question – bringing people back to the basics.
Now in 2017, with the political leadership shifting in many countries, the International Day of Happiness focused on the poverty, hunger, good health/well-being and climate areas of the Sustainable Development Goals currently beckoning at our doors as citizens. It was very clear people are experiencing FEAR (False Evidence Appearing Real) over what the future will hold for their families and communities.
During the meeting, a music video was shown of people dancing to Pharrell’s song, “Happy”. Ambassadors, Non-profit organizations and concerned citizens attending the Happiness meeting found themselves clapping along to the rhythm of the music. Art, Music and Film are forms of “Creativity” that have always been a place people connected with that takes them from a state of sadness and negativity to a place where they feel empowered to find a workable solution for their present circumstances. It is from that place of Creativity and Innovation we will find workable solutions to directly deal with the rising number of people facing mental health issues associated with the fear of losing everything they have.
Mental health issues are increasing among students who have more pressures than previous generations. The need to compete for higher grades, social media and consistently connected to their mobile phones have put young people in high stress at alarming rates. Moreover, young girls especially find themselves contemplating suicide or experiencing anxiety and depression. The pressure on students to excel and be more productive has had disastrous affects on their psyche and ability to naturally experience Happiness; where they come to a point of caring about nothing at all. The same for Adults coping with concerns of work life balance and the ability to economically support their families.
Music and Film tell stories we relate to as human beings. It allows us to connect with solutions to an issue we are facing that we are unable to hear from those closest to us. Innovation provides solutions or new approaches to daily problems Humanity faces. So it is clear, that without Creativity and Innovation, we are lost.
One day a year of celebrating Happiness will not eradicate mental health issues, poverty, hunger or climate. What it does provide is a day where all Leaders have agreed to come together to ensure that every “Human Being” has the “Human Right and Fundamental Human Goal” to be Happy. And to empower such commitment, they must look at the areas that are in the way of their citizens experiencing Happiness; as well as fulfilling on the United Nations UN Resolution for Happiness as a Human Right.
Remember your HAPPINESS is not predicated on outside experiences, but how you choose to feel in every moment. It may be hard when circumstances are not favorable, but remember to have faith in whatever your belief may be. Nothing lasts forever. There is always something good coming to you over the horizon just moments away.