Tuesday, August 19, 2014
It’s a well-used phrase. “I just want to be happy.” “I don’t care that he is quitting medical school, I just want him to be happy.” “I wish I could start over. I would live my life with only happiness in mind.”I think that maybe all this happiness stuff is overrated.
Very few people say, “I want to be miserable.” It just turns out that they end up being miserable. It must be the fact that they have no idea what would make them happy. Right after being happy is getting on with your life. There are a lot of people that want to get on with their life. Most of that problem is caused by your life moving on whether you are ready or not.
“I’m going to live my life without fear from now on. I’m going to wake up without all the anxiety and worries that have plagued me so long.” Well, don’t they sound happier than a bottle of Prozac?
With all the talk of happiness, little is being done to get to the magical place where happiness resides. I know several people that have the happy place identified. They just don’t want to get there yet. One guy told me that he had his happiness all planned out. He was going to quit his job and start-playing guitar in a band. He was sick of the job that he had now. He had been working in the same place for 22 years. The last 10 years had been very hard on him. He was going to quit. “When are you quitting?” He had 10 more years before he could draw his retirement. Then he was quitting and starting a band. What about playing in a band now on the weekends? That was the problem. He didn’t actually play the guitar. He was going to wait until he quit the job and then learn to play the guitar. It really sounded like he was going to have 10 more years of suffering and then it would probably be to late to get in the guitar playing.
With Halloween coming, why would you want to give up fear? All the emotions that we plan to give up can create lots of happiness. Something that is fun sometimes is scary. Roller Coasters can make people happy and scare them at the some time.
Frustration can turn to joy when we solve a big problem. Happiness can be achieved if we get some of the things that are bothering us out of the way. The most menial tasks can bring on happiness if we can just get our mind right.
My mother used to help people reconcile their checkbooks. She would get to the end and say, “Draw a line and start over at zero.” Lots of people want to do that. It’s just hard to get rid of all the years of baggage if we don’t know where we want to go.
I’m hoping to keep some fear, drama, anxiety, frustration and many little jobs in my life. That can lead to some happiness.
My life is already going on whether I like it or not. I’m just trying to keep up with it. One day I might draw a line and start over at zero, but I think that is unlikely.
One of my friends tells me to quit worrying about things like that. He claims that his happiness comes easily without putting too much excess thought into things. He tells me that at the end of a long trying day, he can overcome all the drama, fear, and unhappiness. “It’s incredible how zanax and Valium readily dissolve in vodka.”