Lately I have been thinking about happiness and what it really is more than usual, and I think I have acquired a new perspective on it. Here’s what I found.
We’ve all probably heard the phrase: “Fake it ’till you make it”. Now, I admit I’m not the biggest fan of it. I don’t think you can create happiness by just pretending to be happy all the time. Not unless something changes within.
For the last I-don’t-know-how-many years I have been quite a melancholy person. Surely, with some exceptions and periods of happiness, like the year I lived in Italy, or some short periods of time when my external circumstances were too good for me not to enjoy life. However, when my circumstances are similar to what they are now when I’m stuck between a rock and a hard place (or between popcorn and candy floss, but I just don’t see it yet lol), I tend to be super moody. And I allow myself to be that way for the sake of honesty. This effectively means that when I’m feeling good and comfortable I can be the life of the party, and when I’m having a bad day I will barely say a word, and wind myself up for having to do this or that, and will let myself float around like a cloud of pure gloom. I would always tell myself, even if unconsciously, that I will be happy and I will have energy when my circumstances change. However, they do not change nearly as fast as I would like them to, and I started suspecting that maybe they won’t ever change unless I change my attitude.
I kind of got tired of being this moody, whiny person. There was one day at work when my co-worker was feeling very poorly and I wasn’t in the best mood either initially. However, towards the end of my shift there was a party at the Hotel and they started playing some really awesome music – you know, Old School rock and 70s music. Now, when I hear the music I like I start coming out of my little gloomy shell which effectively means I start dancing and singing and looking happy, almost against my will. My co-worker then told me that seeing me so cheerful and lively made her feel so much better and she suddenly didn’t feel so bad anymore. She even thanked me for it.
I have often been told that when I’m happy and relaxed, I look like a completely different person, in a good way of course. I start radiating this beautiful energy which in turn draws people to me. However, as for the best part of my life I’m tense and gloomy, people tend to see this version of myself as the real one.
So I started forcing myself to be cheerful and bubbly, and crack jokes, even when I’m not feeling so great. And it did in turn make me feel so much better. I also noticed how people react to me differently when I am this way, and I really like it. I realised that for the most part I’m quite a difficult presence to be around, and there are not many people who can put up with my whinning and moodiness. I often can’t put up with it myself.
I’m aware how controversial I’m sounding right now, and perhaps this isn’t for everyone. But after two days of this practise my insomnia went away and I was generally feeling much better and looking healthier.
So maybe the journey to happiness starts with allowing yourself to be joyful when nothing really amazing is happening to you, even when you’re anxious or stressed (which I always am)? Maybe it’s about telling yourself that you can and will be happy because you’re sick of being otherwise?
Let me know your thoughts!