Mercy Students and The Pursuit of Happiness

By Jennifer LaGrippo

The Declaration of Independence declares that we are all entitled to “Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”

Well, according to the Center for Disease Control, New Yorkers have been given the title of the unhappiest people in the country.

Can New Yorkers really blame them?

In such a fast-paced world, it is easy to lose a sense of self. With the busy lifestyle and pressures in the classroom and workplace, too many Mercy College students don’t realize that they put themselves far from first in order of importance

Perhaps it’s an inherited trait that goes unnoticed as New Yorkers race through their everyday routines.

Mercy students hustle on and off campus, juggling the variety of responsibilities and commitments they have put before themselves. Classes, work, family, and friends keep students busy, but what keeps Mercy students genuinely satisfied?

When students at Mercy were asked about the last time they did something because it made them truly happy, the answers were alarming. There were some blank stares, some puzzled faces, while others simply said “I don’t remember.”

Very few students actually gave an answer at all

“Playing soccer makes me truly happy.,.,” said Senior Melissa Neves. “It’s a fun and energetic game that keeps me in shape, which makes me very happy.”

Activities that stimulate the mind and body can be a great way to get a student’s mind off of any problem or stress he or she might endure in this crazy life.

Bret Boylan, also a Mercy Senior, takes a different approach to find his bliss. “Going to the beach is complete relaxation to me. It’s my escape from this crazy world. I put on my iPod and drift away.”

Many famous quotes throughout history discuss happiness. Eleanor Roosevelt said that when she was depressed, she went to work to be happy. Novelist Willa Cather said that “happiness is to be dissolved into something that is complete and great.” Walter Rauschenbusch, a 19th Century theologian, stated, “The real joy of life is in its play. Play is anything we do for the joy and love of doing it, apart from any profit, compulsion, or sense of duty. It is the real joy of living.

It’s time for Mercy students to find some time for themselves and realize that they should be their own first priority

Boylan reminds us, “Every once in a while we need to put ourselves first and do what makes us happy, even if they are the simple things in life.”