„Happiness can be found in the darkest of times if one only remembers to turn on the light.“

Albus Dumbledore said this to the students after a presumedly dark wizard escaped from prison, and prison guards that literally suck the happiness from you start guarding the school.

If Albus Dumbledore, one of the wisest fictional characters ever, is convinced that even in a time like this you can find happiness, what makes us think that whatever our circumstances are, we can’t find happiness in them?

Turn on the light

I like the thought that we can find joy even in times when we are less than happy. I also believe it to be true.

Have you ever been in a bad mood, and then your favorite song came on, and suddenly you were jumping on the couch with a hairbrush in your hand, singing from the top of your lungs into your “microphone“? And even if after the song is over you go back to being sad again, you still had a few minutes of happiness – because you turned on the light. And you always have that choice.

No light without darkness

I think the biggest mistake when we’re trying to turn on the light and be happy is the anticipation, that happiness means living a life where you squeal with joy every second of every single day. First of all, I’m not sure if that’s even possible. Even though I’m willing to try.

And second: That is not the goal, necessarily. Turning on your light is great. But you wouldn’t be able to appreciate the light without some darkness from time to time. I mean, just ask people in the north of Scandinavia what they think about all light all day and night long during summer.

Find your light switch

What is the goal then if it isn’t happiness 24/7? I’d say, it is knowing where your light switch is. It is knowing how to turn on your light when it’s getting too dark around you. It is knowing how to find happiness and joy within the darkness.

So, the question is: How can you turn on the light when you feel like you are caught in the darkness? How can you bring a few moments of joy into dark times?