Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Come On Get Happy

The other day I posted a funny .gif parade that I titled "We Choose Our Own Happiness" and while in itself, the post was a bit of a joke, there is a lot of truth in the statement.

I think people, myself included, often look to the outside to fix whatever is bothering them, whether it be a job that they are unhappy with, the town they live in, family members that they butt heads with, the people they surround themselves with, and the list goes on. However, if you're looking for someone, or some thing else to make you happy, you're doing it wrong.

There are absolutely situations that you cannot control, and they will affect your emotions, there isn't anything wrong with that.  Sometimes a stranger is going to be rude to you, sometimes a family member is going to hurt your feelings, sometimes someone you love is going to disappoint you, that's part of the human experience.  Your reaction, and your ability to let it go, is completely up to you.

Change isn't easy, in fact it's probably the hardest thing humans ever have to do.  It's easy, even if it isn't satisfactory, to live the status quo.  If you want to lose weight, you aren't going to do so laying in bed watching Harry Potter movies every day after work (looking in the mirror) you have to eat better and exercise... but cheese is delicious and cardio sucks balls... there are always excuses, there are always reasons (tired, busy, stressed at work) to do the easy thing, but you can't expect to wake up one morning looking like Giselle if you aren't willing to do the work.

It's the same thing if you're in a toxic relationship, if you aren't willing to talk to your partner, to explain why you aren't happy and figure out how to make the changes necessary to get better, you're always going to be upset and resentful that the person you care for can't read your mind.

For people who are chronically lonely, being a hermit isn't going to solve the problem.  You need to push yourself out of your comfort zone, even if it's just smiling at the person next to you in line at the grocery check out.  Compliment a stranger, call an old friend, hang out in a place that's different than your usual haunts, you aren't going to meet new friends sitting on your couch listening to Ross an Rachel yell at each other about whether or not they were "on a break."  I know that you can meet new people via social networking, I've made some amazing friends that way, but chatting online with someone (as awesome as it can be sometimes, hell sometimes it's just what you need) doesn't always take away the need for human interaction.  This advice also goes for people who are upset about being single, Mike Rowe wrote a great response to someone who was unhappy with his job, and he also commented on how people hate being single, but they're waiting for the "Perfect Person" to fall into their lap and in love... except it doesn't work that way, YOU have to be willing to come out of your shell to meet someone new. You can read it HERE if you're interested.

I know that depression is real, that it isn't just being sad because you didn't get that puppy for Christmas 20 years ago and you just need to get over it and move on with your life.  I know that you can't make someone get help if they don't want it or don't feel like they're ready for it.  I know that you cannot make anyone else happy, just like you cannot depend on someone else to make you happy.

If you feel like you're in over your head and too tired to tread water, please seek help, whether that's calling on a friend, finding a counselor, starting a blog, volunteering at a shelter (human or animal), writing sad country songs,  or start painting your blue period... do whatever it takes to see the sunshine again. And by "whatever it takes" I mean, do something healthy, do something productive, do something to show yourself that there are better days than these.

Let go of the pain (I promise I won't burst into Disney songs here), I'm not telling you to forgive and forget the people who have hurt you, some things aren't forgivable or forgettable, I don't know your story, but you can make it so that past wrongs can no longer hurt you in the future.  Let go of toxic people in your life, even if it isn't easy, let them fade into the background where they belong, do not let them occupy space in your head or your heart, they don't deserve it.