What does it mean to be happy? Is it something we can be forever, or was it always meant to come in five minute bursts here and there?
On this episode of the Packcast, we did Headspace’s Happiness pack — 10 days of exploring what it means to feel content, joyful, exuberant, happy, and even what it means to feel the opposite. This is one of our favorite packs, and after listening to this episode, it might be one of yours too.
Hosted by Kelton Wright, Alex Pompliano, and Jennifer Azlant. Produced by Scott Sorenson.
United States


00:00:03hey and welcome to head faces podcast what has been guided meditation for everybody and what the pack well ahead Face Pack is series of guided meditation Senator on a specific topic like motivation or sleep or focus and like a book club we're going to trial each pack and report back to what we learned hopefully finding new favorites for us and helping the issues your next pack
00:00:30crayon welcome to the podcast I'm counting right
00:00:39and today we're talking about happiness never heard of it
00:00:49you to be happy
00:00:55oh my God goodness discussions not that far to be happy I guarantee you you didn't already write this down we were being deferential I mean if you want to have the Alex's happiness first you wanted to put mine first of the week I'm in Raleigh darling of the things that I wrote down that I think's around my data fill me with contentment I have a food coffee
00:01:29when someone has something kind
00:01:34what about y'all tell me it's when I lose track of time or space and gosh. I say feel in the moment
00:01:45yeah super mindful mindful I like that Alex is just imagine that Andy asked me to make a list it might have asked me outside of the app just on the street or something I made a list I'm still in the regret mine side where I have to make a list of talked about this before on the Pod some people just like to have like a morning cup of Joe and schedule it down that's why I take the time to enjoy whatever coffee Bev I'm I am assuming you make a mean that if it's true cuz I'm not like looking at my phone I'm not I'm usually talking to people in general happiness for you is achieved in MO
00:02:45since it's not a general State wait tell me what about you Alex's to me like happiness is like a longer than an item you know it's it's like weeks of happiness or for me that's why I'm asking cuz I think people have really different definitions of being happy because I had to really parse out and that's God damnit Jenna I'm answering the questions that it wasn't being joyful it wasn't being excited it wasn't being stimulated by something it was happinesses like at a general state of all my needs being met essentially
00:03:36that's right yeah right and that's how I said kind of why did I give it up but just like certain moments because I do not feel like happiness to me the concept is too fleeting till I really like look at it and slept a long stretches of time I was looking at it and just like moments that like just kind of clicked in my brain. Like I am totally content in this moment and every time you have coffee in the morning your content dang something really like pressing like and I am like a rushing but even if I have like something crazy in the morning or whatever I will like make the time to wake up extra early so I can enjoy my coffee
00:04:22is a crazy beautiful snow I know a lot of people to that as they go to bed they're already envisioning like how delightful the morning coffee will be
00:04:31listen I haven't unpacked with like a therapist at like why I enjoy my coffee time so much and it might be like some hidden symbolism there but I really just I do enjoy it it's really nice in a longer time span of several weeks or days that you experience happiness can you think of specific instances or specific kinds of bands of time when you think back to how do you mean recent happiness or what you think about your happiness in a longer stretch of time rather than a moment what kind of bubbles up or is that I have a go ahead of me that is a cheaper ball while your needs are also being met my needs are being at least
00:05:15attended to yeah I mean like as long as I am healthy warm and hanging out with the people and animals that mean a lot to me and then have a go on the horizon that I believe I am capable of achieving that is important it cannot be a super dancing goal then I get overwhelmed but it in those times I'm very happy and in times when I don't have a goal chosen as when I become like seriously unsettled
00:05:49I think you're something this pack really brought some mind is that just like so if you just the wear of your level of contentment it's easy, reframe your happiness to be like I am happy in those moments that I am fully content and I think that's kind of why I like Veer toward like simple moments like getting in the bed after you clean your sheets like stretching out your legs it's like I'm like pretty content in this moment I guess now that I take the time to think of it I am happy
00:06:23Alex's happy I'm happy for you I'm glad happiness even Blair I do previously Associated self love with happiness and the way that Andy presented in this pack how does he presented again you are a great student he presented as eradicating the start of self-criticism are the way in which it's important to be kind not only two others like crucially kind to ourselves he recommends like if you catch yourself kind of having like negative self-talk yourself the same way you give advice take a friend he also says the same way you give advice to it a child I didn't write that down I didn't I didn't know if I totally I don't think I've ever given advice to a child so
00:07:23what's Chris on that when I be like look up money to give advice to Children yet so I didn't really relate to that but I do get it in the context of speaks yourself the way you would speak to your best friend you know I'm not intensely critical of that person unless they're being just in a repeated for were asking for it but most of the time I'm like you are strong you are beautiful you can do this but that's kind of also how I talk to people seek advice for me I'll give them a great advice and it's it's hard for me to like a plan that same kind of advice to myself I I've been working on it like through the out this pack
00:08:23and I can really just made me analyze the whole Foundation of my advice giving I'm like man it might like giving like kind of like meaningless like praise and stuff like that like I feel like I'm fully like empathizing which is supports happiness empathy will come full circle back to that later but I'm giving them like a really well-rounded argument or not think when I'm self talking it could really just be like an arrow pessimistic path and that's why I'm not giving the same kind of like advice this pack also speaks to random acts of kindness and I kind of was thinking about what it would be like to give yourself random acts of kindness is that something that you
00:09:08I do not consider it or what do you mean just like even like I deserve a shot make a coffee at the office or Parks like I'm stopping by like my favorite coffee shop and I'm just like no I deserve this flat white made by a craftsperson why did I blink on that name it's like their craft little things like that that's very materialistic the acts of kindness what that would look like or feel like
00:09:49no no no no it doesn't sound foreign to how I treat myself but I do you think there is
00:10:04you know there's a balance I'm cuz I'm struggling to separate random acts of self kindness with Indulgence and it's like while I would love to be like no I don't feel amazing right now here's a piece of chocolate it's like oh chocolate actually really upsets my acid reflux so I don't have that chocolate will make you feel worse and that is also a step of self kindness
00:10:31yeah I think I have I think I do do this in a way that's sort of like more of a a testing scenario of like I'm going to try this if it works excellent if not I'm not going to beat myself up about it which I guess could be still indulgent but it feels different from like knowing oh for sure I love that flat flat white for example or I know for sure that that chocolate will make me feel certain way I'm just kind of like
00:10:58noticed something that could be intelligent but it's okay for a minute
00:11:02Dennis pack Andy says happiness is supported by kindness empathy am I missing kindness of the first one that he tackles and he suggest that you do a random act of kindness something small without looking for a ward just about your day obviously not during your meditation session but did you guys do that with remembering back to some time you did something kind for someone and sort of like replaying that as manifested gets really tricky I mean it's so obvious to be like do something nice for people but that idea of doing it without expecting something in return it's obvious you're like what why would I of course I can do that no problem and then you let someone in in traffic because this is such an instrument one you let someone in in traffic sorry for the
00:12:02constant La references of traffic but you let them in and they don't wave then and then you're immediately like today and that's the completely wrong response answer you're supposed to feel this modicum of Joy letting someone in even when they're ungrateful and then you're having this internal argument with yourself and you're like no I'm happy I'm happy about letting them in and they're just having a bad day and I'm going to get over it and I I want to just acknowledge how challenging that is cuz it's like day two or day 3 and it's like 2 something nice without expecting anything in return and it's like okay and then it's hard and I think people forget that right now and if you like send someone a really heartfelt email and we're like I just want to let you know that you're like your impact is felt and that these words really changed me and then they just never say anything then you're like
00:13:02show Monster yeah I mean it seems really obvious like how you do something kind for someone and you know it'll make you feel good but I mean it's nice it doesn't hurt to have like a reminder like like from this one session this pack just to do it to the ones who are like I did it and then I felt worse cuz there's like so many approaches to this like what song about per second at this is a 10-day packet and happiness is like the number one thing that everybody in the world is like going home after a billion books about it there's like a happiness index of the world and our country is slowly just falling down the end of taxes
00:13:50people are unhappy I came to this this is the 4th or 5th time I've done that happiness back I love the happiness back which is a little what does it say again because it's it's like I come to this one for the visualization technique of the pin prick of light inside you expanding because it makes me feel very good but I I started doing happiness talk because it was such an alleviation from anxiety and I I want to just see for a second why what did you even expect from 10 days of meditating on the topic of Happiness through all these packs I mean they all have titles whether it's regret motivation and I think a Common Thread through a lot of these packs is that you're coming for that one thing you're not it's not just the quick and easy way to get it it's about reframing like your relationship with whatever this this way
00:14:50this indicator is so I think going into the happiness pack I haven't did it done it before I knew it wasn't going to be handy being like all right like you're going to be happy it's going to Eclipse Cena take abroad Pro to this but I think one of the things it in relation to just reframing happiness for myself and look kind of like breaking it up to contentment and then just like kindness and all these other elements was just yeah I like it was a moment just to kind of alleviate anxiety and stress and I think that's something that the stack does like really well or if I mean everyone think it's something different now they're right like that's I mean you got it out later on in the pack when he's like notice what takes you out of a day of contented content to Denton
00:15:50sometimes it's it's like an email and then you're then you have the smaller your like this email just jolted me out of my place of Happiness why was it that I have something due did I read into the punctuation you know and then realizing how silly sometimes what you allowed to knock you off your rocker
00:16:14and then you get to have this moment where you like that's so easy to make me unhappy
00:16:19spray it's so much easier if you have like say a friend is in a bad mood for some likes hello just like I don't say dumb but just like a very my new like a reason and if you're like in a good mood you're going to be like yo like this is this is so since I cannot think they like why are you even stressing about this I think it's a common thing and that's kind of what I was like treating myself or try I'm going to try to take care of myself after doing the stock
00:16:49yeah it is nice to tell him he's our silly reasons support of happiness is apathy and you said something along the lines of a lack of empathy can cause feelings of isolation which I thought was right he
00:17:14yeah it's easy to conflate them people get them wrong all the time totally and he emphasizes the importance of like
00:17:22making sure that there is a universal experience and then we're all sort of in this thing together I mean in a Twisted way that quote that you just read Alex is very similar to misery loves company cuz in a way if you have no empathy for others if if if you can only really think of your own problems the heel very severe and they can feel impossible to conquer but when I'm thinking about the espresso machine being broken and that's the only problem I am ever aware of in the world is that I no longer have would recommend it and then it just feels like a dang gone bad day as soon as you remember the array of other problems that other people are suffering at that very moment you're like nevermind I'm very happy I'm super happy I'm going to drink flat water comes out of tap it stays I love it love water love everything about this day I'm an idiot never mind never mind my problems
00:18:22there was a moment when Andy was describing the visualization so he starts with the pimp in the center of the body and then continually moves outward and there's a point when she goes even beyond the world and I don't know if the intention there was two like really create perspective in terms of Happiness Beyond however we concept this or Ben and these are words that were on but it was like a really stressed me that like holy shit like we're really trying to think Beyond whatever boundaries we typically think about in terms of finding our place on our balance did anyone else catch that
00:18:59you lost me at orb the or where on the note taking that injector you know the happiness of other life forms and that is amazing
00:19:19and empathy now like I really wanted to get into mindfulness meditation but they're talking or because that way it's and that's just not me I think we should probably touch on the fact that visualisations like that are awfully challenging Peter a lot of people and then that's super normal there's plenty of other techniques to drive but when you are you envision S10 brake light and Grilling and decide yourself and then growing outside of yourself like a beach ball and then you're like Bubble Boy here in here in your own personal orb of sunlight and then it's around your house am I in Lynn then it gets tricky for me cuz I'm like well if it's around my house is it just like a dome or is it also like cupping the Earth beneath me and my slowly expanding to the other side of the earth why I go up into the sky with my orb stations can be challenging but I love it
00:20:19calyx nice guys have a random act of kindness that you performed I did a lot of traffic related ones but yeah to some of them were more traditional moments of like gratitude or thanking people for things there's a point later in the in the Pak 180 suggest listening to or speaking into or spending time with people that you wouldn't necessarily I don't know that folds into the the random acts of kindness in this way but Mini Cooper pool don't talk to me I gave directions to a number of people
00:21:07I live in Akron extra crazy Canyon and there was a Mudslide and so there were a lot of people being redirected up my terrifying Road and roll down the window and be like I'm sorry I don't know where I am how do I get to the Pacific coast and I'm like okay I'm going to talk you through it it's complicated so I need you to stick with me okay and then I will go through the directions and they be like okay thank you in that way were you know if they got to roll up the window they're going to be like one and she's like no no no wait let's review it together I made sure everybody that Coast crazy Canyon sounds like a Mario Kart level which he noticed and appreciates he said something like I still live here
00:22:00yeah I'm still here he might be the hippest person I know to get them on the pod
00:22:19okay let's talk joy and let's talk sense of play
00:22:25Andy wedges us to notice these qualities in our mind and our day just the day the day was feel this pack made me reassess my Spectrum Joy you know if you imagine your pendulum pendulum in the middle what do you define the middle as if it was hanging in the middle is that content is that happy is or is that just like fine and so thinking about if its wings all the way one way is Joy GIF but you have to go all the way to that end do you have to feel like Joy like oh my God this is amazing or can you just really nice just Joy start for you cuz I did have one moment this past weekend that was like oh my God this is amazing iPhone life yeah yeah it was like jazz and excited and ready to change my whole life
00:23:25you have to get that high every time to feel Joy
00:23:28Georgia to me it has to be some exuberance in like what's happening like I went out like dancing at the club my like Friday night and that's like yeah yeah come to me it's like I'm not contends I wouldn't like obviously I am but all my needs are being met at that time but I'm not like oh I'm content right now and I wouldn't like what I'm joyful in that moment I know it's temporary you know to got to get out but forget to me joy
00:24:06yeah I think I kind of like a giddiness like a little bit of silliness definition of Joy was actually I saw this dog hanging out of it the roof of a car this morning and just like flying down a hill and it was exactly that's silly and like Lively and exuberant and yeah I saw the dog wearing sunglasses on roller skates on the lower end of my joy I was laying in the hammock watching birds in the cat jumped into the hammock with me and fell asleep on me and then not exuberant Joy you know that was like I think Joy life of furnished all the worms in the world Joy while sick
00:25:02feels like I'm not a cat person but Disney moment but she got the cat on you get the birds birds are chirping
00:25:13play joyful yeah it's not it's not fully all the way on the upswing of the pendulum now that's only like halfway up I think so on the pendulum are we balance when were in the center or are we balance when it's moving though I'm still assessing where my pendulum is in and we're in these teachings it's meant to lie because it's it's hard for me to think that the pendulum hanging straight down and still is just okay it's just accepting is not neither happy nor unhappy I said rest just stressed yeah just accepting things as they come in that to me sounds right but it also sounds like a disappointment sounds like a bummer and that is one of the parts of these teachings that I'm still trying to understand
00:26:05so Andy describes happiness as something contentment to azalina's underlying right at so if its underlying is it just at rest waiting for us and then capable of finding the extremes even on the Other Extreme if it has wings over to extreme grief and anger and sadness that during those times of grief and anger and sadness presumably I may still be able to like go home and like getting the hammock and have a cat jump on me also do you allow yourself like a range of what is that toy we drop one ball has maxed out of all the other way we have a series of pendulums that like keep swinging in and out of motion with each other and that it's just like the actual hook at the top that holds all of them the axle contentedness that's why I like my had such a small moments of
00:27:05what I consider to be like contentment like I can have a coffee one minute and like that I'm good you not pick up my phone New York Times notification is it bad if I go if you know that's that's the that's the negative Swing and Slide into this territory and then you know so we can pay me a compliment or can you receive the alerts and then go back to enjoying the coffee the way that you are prior in the back of my mind that it depends on how spicy the notification is that is what you did actually compartmentalizing it did you just like put the terrible notification into a box and be like I will separate that deal with it later or
00:28:03because you're awfully then you've clearly meditated quite a bit where you able to see that and be like okay I can't make any actions on that right now my present moment is with this cup of coffee and I'm going to continue with it alert or notification I can tag it is like you know that's that's not good I don't like that but I don't let it disrupt what I'm doing and like even saying that just seems like way more extreme of what's happening in my mind at the moment cuz I'm not like you know I know like I got to really got enjoy the rest of this, this coffee it's really like someone is using the noting technique in their day-to-day life
00:29:03visualization fans, noting, noting kind of guy you can be
00:29:18you're not easily distracted by by the external notification other work that even if it is overwhelming in some regard you're able to remain steady
00:29:31yeah I think it's just it comes through obviously meditation practice but also I yeah I think just kind of hanging out with nothing I do nothing that's how I react is not going to change like rainbows notification or whatever especially at that moment and it's nothing I can do about it and why not choose to stay in this like my middle pendulums State like why not just choose to do that cuz it is a choice but I like I like this to them and analogy do you think people not generalize what people put like to say to hide standard for happiness I got we touched on that people struggle with finding happiness it's like you know like it's it's own thing but I don't know if this looks like having high standards but just not being able to recognize contentment a lot of people are imagining that happiness is always
00:30:31feeling exuberant for sure I'm just like thrilled and joyful and that's not really what it means even in today they just have you heard someone say today like reference someone's Instagram like man that person is really just like doing it right I need to get on their way and it's like you know obviously that's a highly decorated like feed this is how they're presenting this you know a lot Lisa probably later grams you know this isn't the first in his life and it's I think it's just like this person's really happy that all there I need that level of Happiness speaks to the idea that happiness is an 8 and cannot be created or is unable to be also
00:31:23Trisha Paytas Instagram face but I think we're really getting at something here what would make you guys Happy
00:31:36coming off a three-day weekend is a great time to talk about this one extra day to be along the ocean side and catching some vitamin D and exercising so you think that if you permanently had a four-day work week that then you would always be happy no I don't think I'm program to always be happy which I feel fine about but I can think about like a specific experience that I can make artificial or create and which I can pretty regularly feel happiness what do you mean what do you mean an artificial experience I know the beer I know the time of day I know the music I want to be listening to on the way back from the beach piano that
00:32:23how you're going to say you want to be in the yard is very happy never let me do that
00:32:40what would make you happy not one thing or what even if I was given like a year to come up with my dream scenario of what would make me quote a quote happy I think other over the one thing that I think will provide enough reach for happiness the kind of like you know stoke the fire overtime is just really just feeling fulfilled in my mic work and just like accomplishments and I guess I just like relationships and all that like the kind of feeling fulfilled but like Lucky's mention earlier always having something more to kind of a Spire to I don't ever want to just like a line on that and I think I just having stuff I could reach to an even if that that process is often very messy and nuts until with uncertainty that still like adds fuel to the fire and I would be able to lie
00:33:40I think the concept of happiness is there not in a sense that would be making me happy what about you I'm pretty happy I think that I would see a big Improvement on my general state of content if I was healthier but I say that as a hypochondriac so I very well could be healthy right now I try to stay to myself lately like what if right now is the best you're ever going to feel ever again and if that was the case then like that taken advantage of it I know it did not take advantage of it when I was younger and in times of poor health is when I was the most productive cuz I was like I get these things done so now it's just I know in my heart of hearts that I like I'd be so happy if I was just always healthy
00:34:40it's like you're just be happy you didn't wet so I am in a constant negotiation on that but other than that cats birds husband truck cabin some sunshine bicycle bike some hike I just like always some level of like an outdoor Fitness activity and that's that's pretty good I mean No Greater Joy than getting that road closure notification like a snow day for adults
00:35:12look at your pendulums in and like you know not good territory someone hits you with the compliment it's going to go through
00:35:25even when I got hit with a nice compliments like I told you guys this my favorite author reblogged an essay that I wrote I mean it was like a scary I got the manic episode for me but then had to do like it's good but down your life is exactly the same as it was I can't believe Tucker Max retweeted era
00:35:54also nice throwback where did the name, we could collectively agree with looks like you've lost something I wrote about birds really into like I don't know if you still in the crystals he went to the mass of Crystal faces then you would love it he just happiness hummingbirds are great y'all did you know when they're confused they stop like their wing like they're like he doesn't like stopping me lie but they take the time to like a rest confused
00:36:54what happened basically someone who's like wearing a hat or something like that live in a hummingbird thought it was like something and so it's like trying to like you know get the Agave whatever the hell they they dude I got out of it and then just look rested on the brim of those kinds of Psych like let me reassess the situation time-life brag just by the sound of the Wings I can tell the difference between Anna's hummingbirds and rufous hummingbirds can you tell him they're taking a quick nap I need Alex to do that
00:37:35wow that was that was a moment of pure joy for me when I close my eyes I can tell the different types of cars that are driving by but it sounded their engines and I'm like damn how you guys feeling happy feels well oiled and I'm quite honestly I was still pretty joyful after we do these yet Joe catch that blue sky
00:38:17whether this is your first time or 5th time with this pack let us know what you thought of it and the check cashed by leaving a review on iTunes or shoot me an e-mail Kelton at headspace.com and you might just hear it read it on there

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