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You Can’t Make People Happy

Articles Inspirational articles from Hay House authors

You Can’t Make People Happy

It all starts with YOU.
Byron  Katie
Byron Katie More by this author
Jan 27, 2010 at 09:00 AM

You can’t make people happy.

My daughter wanted a car. It was not an easy time in her life. She was just turning sixteen. She was so beautiful and dear and yet filled with self-hatred, guilt, and shame. I felt this was the perfect opportunity to make her happy, so I bought her a car. None of her friends owned cars; this would be really special. I thought the car was fabulous. I pictured her in it, and felt an all-consuming pleasure.

When I gave it to her, my heart was pounding with excitement. It was the gift of a lifetime, I thought, and I was giving her the key to happiness. But immediately I could see that something was wrong. She wasn’t happy. It wasn’t the car she wanted. (It was the kind of car that her friends would tease her about, she later said, and I’d had no way of knowing that.)

At the time, I was deluded enough to believe that she should be grateful, that she should love it, and that she was being difficult on purpose. I came to see that she was just like me. If anyone is going to make me happy, it has to be me, and she will find her own happiness or not. I came to see that it was all about me.

About Author
Byron  Katie
Byron Katie is the author of the bestselling books Loving What Is: Four Questions That Can Change Your Life, I Need Your Love—Is That True?, and A Thousand Names for Joy: Living in Harmony with the Way Things Are. ..... On her website y Continue reading