Will getting your heart's desire make you happy?

Do you feel that if you could only fall in love/get that dream job/move to Spain/get your novel published you'll be truly happy? Here's what I've learned about achieving your heart's desire....and why it might be more complicated than you think.

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If, like me, you've always felt that you'll be truly, really, PROPERLY happy when you achieve the thing you've always dreamed of - in my case having a novel published - then this one's for you.

Lucy Atkins


Author of the novels The Other Child (2015), and The Missing One (2014); award winning author & feature journalist.


Go to the profile of David Head
over 6 years ago
Hi Lucy, what an honest piece, it really resonated with me- thanks for sharing your views on screen. It reminds me about the importance of the journey over the destination- it can sometimes feel a little flat when you get there. I recall Eckart Tolle pointing out that any joy or happiness deriving from the ego tends to be short lived and I agree with that. The ego is often part of the driver which makes us create but the joy often comes in the creating, rather than the creation. That said, books are often like having children, the appreciation comes over time.. thank you. David
Go to the profile of Suzy Walker
over 6 years ago
Thank you for this honest post, Lucy. I loved reading your first book and your second book - both gripping and thrilling and unputdownable so thank you for writing them.
But yes, it's very interesting dealing with this 'I'll be happy when....' thinking. I think it's part of being human but also I agree, not the path to happiness. I do enjoy setting goals but often I feel that the process is often more fun than the getting there.
Go to the profile of Lucy Atkins
over 6 years ago
Thank you both for these lovely responses. I agree that much of the joy comes from the struggle - and also, David, that 'happiness deriving from ego is shortlived' feels very true.
Go to the profile of Diane Priestley
over 6 years ago
Eloquently expressed Lucy. Thanks for sharing this ambivalence we feel when we achieve our goals. And congratulations on your novels. These are mighty achievements to relish and savour!
I am someone who constantly "yearns" for the next thing. I am in a state of yearning! An emotional state I felt as a child I know, longing for Daddy's attention and affection! I have a new current heart's desire (having achieved my goal of a home in the countryside) and it's the ideal job. I'm waiting - in that unsettled limbo state - to hear if I've cracked an interview! And yet the sun is shining through my window and I could be enjoying a walk in the countryside with my dogs! How ironic! We humans can be fickle!