Wednesday, 2 July 2014

The Secret of Being Happy

You know those people? The ones who are always happy, and never complain about a thing in life? We know that it is next to impossible that all of them are just "happy people" by nature.

So we wonder how they do it. How do they maintain a face full of sunshine and carry two handfuls of optimism? The truth is, they don't. They lie. There are no eternal silver linings or limitless half full glasses. They just know how to mask it, and if they believe they are happy then isn't that as good as the real thing?

What brings you happiness?

For me, it's my dogs. It's Pretty Little Liars binges with Rhys, and fresh flowers in my window. It's Chuck Bass' everything, and Blair Waldorf's attitude. For me, it's the smell of Christmas and vanilla, and it's fairy lights all year round. It's writing, and it's making the smallest difference in someone because of it.
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Material things do make me happy, but they do so in short bursts. Nothing feels as good as slicking on a creamy expensive lipstick, or freshly polished nails. If I were wealthy, I would be one of those people with yachts never sailed, and studded Valentino shoes never worn. I buy things because I believe they will fill the void, and when I can't buy things (because the economy has more power over my finances than any Chanel counter does) then I get a case of the mean reds.

You know the "mean reds"? To press rewind for a brief moment, in Truman Capote's most adored classic Breakfast at Tiffany's, Holly Golightly explains: 
The blues are because you're getting fat and maybe it's been raining too long, you're just sad that's all. The mean reds are horrible. Suddenly you're afraid and you don't know what you're afraid of. 
After the reds, then come the inevitable and harrowed sounds of the blues.

I'm a little sad because I can't be the person I need to become.

I'm sad because I lost my best friend last year (my dog, don't judge me or I'll bite you myself).

I'm sad because everyone put their faith in me, and I couldn't deliver results.

I'm hopeful because I know I can give something back,  and I know the good outweighs the bad- but I'm not happy that the results aren't instantaneous.

Happiness comes in warm afternoons filled with earnest laughter, and honest storytelling. Happiness comes from small joys, and great achievements. It comes from being fearless, and it comes at you in waves.

Are you afraid of being unhappy? Honestly, you really should be. Channel the fear, and carve it into something else. It's like whenever I had a deadline at university, I couldn't complete it until I had "the fear". 

To be happy, you need to know your limits. You need boundaries, you need to learn how to say no. You also need to avoid indulgence in other people's dramas, and you need to stop making excuses.  You have to stop comparing, refrain from judgement and accept responsibility. Let go.

Logically, we know we're lucky. We are blessed with health, family, friends and education. But there are some things we can't seem to achieve, and when our life's purpose is to do more then all we want is more, regardless of what it is.
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We are all sad. We all get lonely, solitary and confused. But we can't be that way all the time, because all that's left is rock bottom. Laugh when you can, and leave the rest.

Acceptance. Accept where you are, and where you can or can't go. Accept who you are at your core, and who you want to be in your story. Accept you might not be happy, and work on that.