The Happiness Habit

Aarish Shah
5 min readJul 12, 2020
Shot captured in Papua New Guinea by me

Last week I wrote about The Pit which, to be honest was an incredibly difficult piece to write, and equally hard to put out there.

Not just because it opened up parts of myself to the world that I hadn’t necessarily ever though I would, but because I know how complicated the whole subject of depression is, and I didn’t want to seen to be saying that I had the answers, because I don’t.

All I have is my experience and the words to share my story.

So this week, I thought I would write something a little more heartening, on a subject that I have spent a great deal of time thinking about; it’s a subject that has been written about, debated and done to death by all and sundry so I thought, why not add my perspective too :)

But mainly it’s a subject that I think is important for all of us, especially as we go through such a potentially bleak period in our personal and collective histories.


Happiness is not something we acquire, it’s a state of being.

This is probably the most important takeaway from anything else I write here, so if the only thing you remember from this whole post is that TL;DR then my job is done.

This should be obvious to everyone, after all, the grammar itself tells the story, you don’t say ‘I’m getting some happy’, you say ‘I am happy’.

Not particularly profound Aarish, what’s your point.

My point is this.

Happinesss is not an externality to be chased, it’s something that is within ourselves.

It’s a state of mind, that is (barring clinical issues) within our control. And that’s the first step to achieving a state of happiness; accepting that your happiness is not something that others can give you, it’s always and only something you can give yourself.

And because of that reality, one of the things I have learned is that it is also highly alligned to your sense of gratitude and self esteem.

So let’s start with a little story.



Aarish Shah

Generalist | Thinker | Life Long Learner | Writer | Photographer