I am not going to add to the conversations everyone is having about suicide and depression.

I could talk about it, but that will not help me talk about joy and happiness.

I am so very sad about Robin Williams just like everyone else, but if he was dictating my words he would want you to discover laughter, joy and happiness.

He would shake his head to all the blogs that brought so much darkness.

Yes, I believe that there is a lot of darkness and sorrow in our lives, but I didn’t come here to tell you about the vast amount of dark energy.

I came here to tell you that vast amounts of joy exist right next to the darkness.

In my quest to find happiness for me and for you I have learned the following:

  1. Happiness is closer to sadness than we realize. The distance between sad and happy is the smallest distance there is.
  2. Real happiness will come when you have experienced a lot of sadness. Real joy lives next door to tragedy.
  3. You can’t meditate your way to joy and you can’t read your way to it either. There is a path within each one of us that leads to happiness many times in a lifetime. We have to find it our own way.
  4. When we compare our happiness with other people’s happiness we cheat ourselves. We cheat ourselves each time we do that. Stop it.
  5. Nature lives next door to happiness.
  6. External relationships that bring drama into our life will keep us further and further away from our destined happiness. Mute drama from your life. One second at a time.
  7. The right people take you to your happiness faster, but not if your happiness does not have a home within you! Happiness has to live within you for others to be able to make you happy. (Click to Tweet!)
  8. Most people confuse real happiness with excitement. When excitement is called happiness we will always rely on accomplishments and relationships to be happy. Real happiness is not the result of making dreams come true. It is the result of sorrow, sadness and loss. Yes, you read that right. The happiest people I have met are people who have experienced sorrow and climbed their way out of it. Happiness of this kind is hard to mimic any other way. When you feel this type of happiness, trees can make you happy. The wind can make you smile. The flowers can bring tears.
  9. The pursuit of happiness should take place in a dark forest, behind big obstacles, not in a valley where the sun shines brightly. When we land there to begin with we do not recognize happiness. We have to lose the valley and find it again to see happiness for the first time.
  10. Wherever you are today, you are as close as you can be to happiness.

And if I was to write about Robin Williams I would say that in his lifetime he got closer to happiness than most people because of his proximity to sadness.

For today see yourself as capable to find joy as the happiest people you have ever met. Especially if you have seen tragedy.

With oh so much love,


PS. I launched a 30days of firsts email program for the world. See more info here: 30DAYSOFFIRSTS 

Share this post


Christina Rasmussen is an author, speaker and social entrepreneur who believes that grief is an evolutionary experience required for launching a life of adventure and creative accomplishment.

Inspiration to your inbox every Friday

Subscribe to the Life Changing Second Firsts Letters


  • Thanks for this post–perfect reminder and exactly what I needed today! This is a much more fitting tribute to Robin Williams, as well as to the rest of us —

  • Dianne says:

    I think happiness must be my message for this week. I signed up for the Oprah/Deepak 21-Day Meditation Experience, Expanding Your Happiness, but it’s been such a busy week I haven’t been able to open any of the lessons until this morning – and then I saw your Message in a Bottle. Such an important message as I approach what would have been our 45th wedding anniversary next week. Mute the drama, stop the comparisons, align with nature, surround myself with the ‘right’ people. I can do this. I will remember your comment “There is a path within each one of us that leads to happiness many times in a lifetime. We have to find it our own way.” And Deepak’s “The natural expression of our happiness is to do good in the world.” Let me begin.

  • Ilana Lewis says:

    I really needed to hear this today. I leaned into the darkness last night and it scared me. I have been feeling so lonely. I feel like I have no one. I am in a marriage that has fallen apart. The Robin Williams quote circulating about being around people that make you feel lonely has REALLY hit home for me this week. Thank you for this! I must be on the verge of happiness as I am so deep in the depths of loneliness that I can see the light…..<3

  • Lisa says:

    This is all making so much sense to me, now. I was in such a dark place for most of a 20 year marriage and, additionally, for the past 5 years in fear of my life since the divorce. All of that is finally over and I have been finding my way back to the light, back to people, back to life and the freedom to be me. I have never been so happy as I have been for the past couple months and now, I think I have even found someone who truly wants to add to my happiness! Your book showed me what I was doing to myself and forced me to take a good hard look inside…and inspired me to finally look outside, too! Thank you for all you do!

  • Sandra says:

    I dont understand how sadness is close to happiness

Leave a Reply