Sunday, December 19, 2010

On the Subject of Happiness

In the formative years, I wanted to be happy. Whenever I had to blow candles out on a cake or make a wish for any other reason, it was to just "to be happy." This makes me sound like a miserable child, and I did have a few rough patches, especially in elementary and junior high. I actually look back on high school with fond memories and I consider my college years to have been an amazing time in my life. Happiness always came and went, sometimes quickly, sometimes staying for awhile. There were times when I thought I was happy and I wasn't. There was also times when I thought I was miserable and was actually fairly content, at least relative to what else was going on around me. 

The focus on happiness in the latest issue of Real Simple got me thinking about it. A few years ago, the subject of making a wish came up and I didn't know what to wish for because truthfully, I was happy. And still am. That's not to say I don't have horribly bad days. I can be angry and hateful. There are a few areas of my life that I'm not particularly happy with. I still tend to be moody, and I take my Happy Pills religiously to keep myself from freaking out. 

The article talked about how happiness comes in small doses, not just huge ones, and instant gratification happiness doesn't always last long. Getting married? Huge shot of happiness, and one that keeps on making me happy. That's because I have an amazing husband who actually gives me little moments of happiness. Going to GenCon this past year? Again, big dose of happy made up of all sorts of little ones. Seeing my family? This is always a mixed bag depending on what's going on, but it's generally little momentary doses during the time we spend together. 

Growing up, I somehow got to this point of realizing that I don't need to have a huge helping of 'yay' delivered to me on a platter, I just need to learn to savor the small bites and enjoy them while they last. I think alot of people know this, but as someone who used to think I couldn't be happy until I lost all the weight or had all the things I wanted or had the perfect job, it really hits home for me. I don't have, or haven't done, any of that. But even on my worse days, I can find something that brings me joy. 

In preparing for the New Year and the resolutions that come with it, I'm thinking of starting a daily happiness blog, just to find one thing in my day that makes me happy. Once it's up, I'll link it if anyone wants to follow. 


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