Tuesday, 22 November 2016

We Don't Have to be Happy all the Time

I set out on 01 January with one goal - find happiness.

To say that I have succeeded however, is not so simple. I can't say that I am happy now, because right now, in this very moment, I feel far from happiness. I'm on the brink of a breakdown, but I'm veering on the side of safe.

BUT I can say with all honesty that I am happier than the person I was on 31 December 2015.
"Attaining lasting happiness requires that we enjoy the journey on our way toward a destination we deem valuable." - Tal Ben-Shahar, Happier
You see, happiness isn't defined in the moment. (And THANK GOD, right? Because I am SO not there). Happiness is defined by the journey, the ups and the downs, the highs and the lows.
It's about all the moments, the bigger picture, the overall state of your life.

State of your life is an acceptable term, right?

This year I have found this overarching level of happiness. While I may not be happy right now, I am happy. And here's how I know:

  • I actually have the self-confidence to yell Woohoo in zumba class and mean it.
  • I can say hello to someone and not have a freakin' panic attack over what they must think of me.
  • Phone calls are not my worst enemy.
  • I was not even the teeniest bit embarrassed when a coworker wore an almost identical outfit as me.
  • I know that I am loved. And I feel loved.
  • I put a picture of me sans make-up on the internet and didn't give a damn.
  • I took this one photo that I was ridiculously proud of.

So for those of you out there looking at this list and thinking 'What the actual hell? These little things do not equate to happiness', I respectfully disagree. For me, happiness is all of these things. They may seem like small, otherwise insignificant moments to some of you, but to me they are the feeling of victory over my mental illness.
For me, happiness is feeling self-assured, having self-worth, and being your perfectly awesome self.

Life is full of delightful treasures - what Oprah Winfrey calls the 'ahhh moments' in her book What I Know For Sure. The 'ahhh moments' let you know that you've found your little bit of happiness.

You don't have to be happy all of the time. You just need those 'ahhh moments' to remind you that you are here, you are happy, and you are loved.

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