We live in a world starved for happiness. We’re forgetful, we’re tired, and we’re always moving on to the next thing. Our collective brains are great at dwelling on negativity, and mother culture says bad news creates better ratings. We crave happiness, but we don’t know what to do when we have it.
It’s like old Don Draper once said, “But what is happiness? It’s a moment before you need more happiness.”
How about this…
How insane is it that the ones who complain the most are also the ones who judge people for being happy? Haters gon’ hate. Ainters gon’ aint. Smiling makes you a target. Joy makes you a threat. People soak in the hatred of the world and only want to produce more of it. They say misery loves company, but really misery hates joy.
We have people who’ve made entire careers off judging whether we should enjoy movies.
There are people who refuse to smile in pictures because they hate their smile.
America spends more money self-medicating depression than they do on actual counseling.
Sidebar: I’m not hating on anti-depressants. Far from it. But there are plenty of people who would rather cover their wounds than actually get to the root of healing. Some would rather cry out for help, than actually accept a hand.
As for me…
I love where I’m at.
But uh, there’s some scars here.
I left my job, as you already know, and things have been weird since. Sure, I LOVE my current job, but I was at the old place for 10 years. So, it’s completely normal to have nightmares about being late for meetings and hearing regular conversations as veiled threats.
(No, it’s not normal)
A former co-worker said it’s like PTSD. I’m not so bold as to say that, but I’ll definitely say that that over the last six months every conversation was an interrogation and it’s completely normal to struggle to not feel that way when you step into a new door.
But that doesn’t mean I let it steal my joy. I rise out of those ashes. Happiness isn’t “everything is awesome,” it’s “every little thing… is gonna be alright.”
As for us…
We deserve better. But that doesn’t matter. What you deserve and what you have don’t swim in the same pool.
Life throws a number of negativity your way. It’s your choice is you soak it in. You can make strides to escape, you can make choices to get yourself in a better place. Is it immediate? Sometimes. Is it easy? Could be.
But is it the only way to grow?
- Make a plan. If you’re in a pool of negativity, then you need to find the ladder.
- Embrace your choices. You control your attitude and effort. Go ahead and control what you can control.
- Dance more. Listen to music you like. Talk to people who make you happy.
- Tell those people. Let them know how they impact you. Encourage one another daily.
- Get help. Seriously. Find people who are doing what you want to be doing and ask them for help. The worst you can hear is “no.”
- Don’t look at happiness as a goal. Or an emotion. Or even, frankly, like a thing other people get to have. View happiness as a part of life… yes, even your life.
- Rinse. Repeat. Spread joy.
Which brings us to resiliency…
Struggle with contentment is healthy. That doesn’t mean you can’t struggle, but how long you choose to be there is entirely up to you. Your life is your life. Make the most of it.
But hey… when you find yourself needing help…