One of the things I like about me is that I don’t sit around waiting for “happy” to find me. I go out and look for it. Every. Single. Day. And when I find even a little bit of it, I grab on and embrace it and feel grateful for it.
I admit, I’ve been very fortunate. We’ve gone through some rough times and we’ve had a terrible thing or two come our way. But many, many people have it a lot worse.
I’ve never in my life had to wonder where my next meal was coming from, or had to chose between medicine and food for my children, or paying the rent or the electric bill. I’ve never been COMPLETELY alone. I’ve never been dependent on drugs. I’ve never had to watch a child self-destruct to the point of losing their life. I’ve never had to fend for myself. I’ve always had a roof over my head, enough to eat, and someone to love and have them love me back.
So, I can see that I don’t have a reason to NOT be happy.
That’s not to say I don’t get depressed from time to time, but it is mostly short-lived. Even on my worst days, I can usually find a reason to smile. I refuse to let life and all the crap it can throw at you get the better of me.
But a lot of people who are in the same situation I am, are not happy. They can’t see how fortunate they are. They want more, and more, and more, and are incapable of enjoying what they have. They have an attitude of “I’ll be happy when…”
For those people, “happy” will never come, because “happy” is not dependent on what you have, it’s a way of living your life. Not a destination, but a means of travel.
So how do you find “happy?” It is not a passive thing. It’s an active endeavor. You have to go out and look for it. It rarely walks up and smacks you in the face. Sometimes you have to look hard – under bushes and in the shadows to find it. It’s looking for the silver-linings in the storm clouds, learning to dance in the rain. It’s accepting that there is no one or no thing that can make you happy. It has to come from within.
Now, I’m not going to lie. I feel happy when I eat a scoop of ice cream. That’s easy. But I am also happy in the middle of a huge blow up with Mr. Tattered. IF I remember to be grateful that I have have someone I love enough to fight with instead of just walking away from them. I’m happy when I get my feelings hurt and am crying. IF I remember to be grateful that I have someone in my life that CAN hurt my feelings because I care enough about them to care what they think of me. I’m even happy when I am the most depressed. IF I remember to be grateful that I’m only going to feel like that for a short time, and then I’m going to pull myself up by bootstraps and come up with a plan to correct whatever it is that’s dragging me down.
I have learned that happiness follows gratitude.
So I make a point of thinking about what I’m grateful for every day. It’s amazing what a difference it makes.
I hope you are having a life full of happy. If you’re not, don’t waste another minute; get out there and find it. Life is too short to live without it.