A few days ago, I had a Facebook friend wishing it to be the weekend. She never did mention why it had to be the weekend, but I could only assume that she was either trying to be adorable or was having a less than smooth week. I had to chuckle at her post.
My “weekends” never happen until mid-week. And during the actual week-end, I’m working most of the day. Kind of sucks, yet that’s been my reality for over the past year, and I’m okay with it. Why’s this?
It’s because I’ve long realized that the times that I was conditioned to believe were “fun”, i.e.~ holidays, weekends, summer, etcetera, weren’t inherently fun. They could be just as bad as your worst Monday morning. (And I’ve had quite a few cr@ppy holidays.) Think about it:
- An incident with the family on Thanksgiving.
- The truck popping a tire on New Year’s Eve.
- Your computer rendered completely dysfunctional after what you thought was a successful upgrade. Plus it happens on your day off!
Yes, all of that sh*t happened to me! They all happened during days that were supposed to had been “good” or “fun”. So what the hell ever made them so great to begin with?
I guess I could blame the media, advertisers, the Catholic Church, my parents, or any other number of culprits who likely warped my mind. Maybe I could blame the Walt Disney Corporation. They, Gladstone Comics, and a number of other sadists turned me into a one-time Disney-sycophant. (Oh, it was awful! I’m still having urges to this day!) Why would anyone ever make me believe in lies like Christmas, Easter, and Summer Vacation? I’m sure there’s a conspiracy here…
But just like you, I only have myself to blame for believing such pap. Those days were never really magical to begin with. I assigned such a lofty standard to them. And whenever they failed to deliver (which was often), I’d get mad about it. Allow me to rephrase this thought,
I chose to be mad about days that were neither good nor bad.
Yeah, I may had been convinced that they were “good” or “fun”, but there was never really any reason for them to be that way in the first place. I chose to make them those things. I always had the power to choose if they were “good” or “bad”.
Today (as of writing), I had a relatively smooth day at work, bought new acrylic inks at Michael’s, and eat a pizza that was pretty decent. Plus I’m catching up on some wrestling. Sounds like a pretty good day right? Yet I could had just had easily focused on all of the things that annoyed or pissed me off today. Being half-asleep most of the morning. The morons driving behind me who thought that a one lane street had a magic passing lane. Running out of vodka. (No worries, it wasn’t great vodka.)
Had I focused on all of the things that went wrong, today could had easily been a “bad day”. This leads into a larger conversation on happiness. Being “happy” doesn’t just happen, you have to choose to be happy. There’s no tiny fairy that sprinkles pixie dust on your head. it doesn’t just happen. If you want to be happy, you have to think and act happy.
The sad thing are that most people never realize this. People try to seek out happiness. They look for it in all sorts of vices such as drugs, sex, television, food, you name it. The pleasure that vices provide are usually short-lived. And when they end, then what? We either do more of a given vice or do something that we think will give us even more pleasure. When that doesn’t last, we move on to something else. Eventually we burn ourselves out and surrender to the notion that we’re condemned to a life that sucks.
So how do we avoid this trap?
First off, we have to come to terms with the fact that any period of happiness is only temporary. No one’s ever happy all of the time.
Second, we have to work at being happy. It means that we must actively work at happiness. We have to focus on happier thoughts. Stop dwelling on negative thoughts and/or past events that mentally brought us down. We need to involve ourselves in activities that produce meaningful happy moments, like saving up for a trip to Japan. We also need to learn how to better endure the tough times and not see them as a sign of our condemnation or a life of failure.
The wisest man who ever lived, King Solomon asked his most trusted minister to find a mythical ring that would make him happy when he was sad and bring him down when he was happy. The minister searched in vain for it. Then he stumble upon an old goldsmith who inscribed upon a gold ring, “This too shall pass.” That means no matter how good or bad the present is, it will eventually pass away. Why? Because it has to.
When I first started this website, I had just failed at real-estate investing, was unemployed, deep in debt, stupidly added another layer of debt for some useless, overpriced program on SEO that featured a “mentor” that likely never made a dime off SEO or affiliate advertising, and I was depressed out of my mind. It only had taken what seemed like forever to get out of this hole because my mind wasn’t right. Life was awful and I couldn’t have seen all of the opportunities around me. I was like a drowning man flaying in the ocean.
The moment that I took responsibility for my life and started to work on my mind, things slowly began to turn around. I had done all of the Law of Attraction stuff like affirmations, dream boards, and visualizations. I listened to free hypnosis tracks and started taking up yoga to help me deal with my bout of depression. I paid attention to my thoughts. And when I started to dwell upon anything negative, I either tried to turn it around or shifted my focus on thoughts that lift me up.
The bottom line is that your happiness is in your own hands. You may not be ridiculously wealthy or have the job that you love waking up to RIGHT NOW. (I’m stressing RIGHT NOW because you’re only living in the present moment, not the future.) Stop wasting your time waiting on someone or some event to magically change your life. Do whatever it takes to improve it yourself. Your life may seem like a cluster-n-a-half at this moment. It’ll pass away before you know it. You can be happy, content, or even copacetic no matter how bad your circumstances. All you need to do is to take the first step.