As I circle a number that indicates how happy I feel right now from 1 to 10 in my 60 day journal I wonder what 10 really feels like. What does 1 feel like? Can you put a number on happiness? In fact, what is happiness? For me, number 10 would be a state of excitement. But does excitement equal happiness? I think not. It passes relatively quickly and then hopefully it comes back again. Isn’t happiness supposed to be something more stable and permanent? Or is it just a word society created to describe ear to ear smiles in beautiful beach photos on instagram? Or a validation you feel when someone tells you nice things, or the excitement you feel about a new phone you purchased? Can anyone say they are truly happy? I assume if they did it would mean they are happy most of the time, because it’s simply impossible to always be happy, just like it is impossible to always be unhappy – bodily survival instinct will kick in eventually.
All of a sudden the word happiness seems like a label to me. A validation for the world, screaming “See, I’m happy!” In reality, if I don’t feel excited or motivated to go outside today and do a morning winter walk in my shorts like I’ve been enjoying and instead I sit in my kitchen and listen to podcasts in a quiet contemplative mood, does that mean I am less happy and I should mark number 6 instead of 9 on the happiness chart? If I don’t feel jitters about Christmas and I have no wrapped up gifts under a tree ( and don’t have a tree either), if I feel mellow instead, should I choose 4 or 5 on the happiness scale? My view on happiness now is that if I allow myself to feel whatever I am feeling and I don’t fight it and don’t try to change it and push it in the “right” direction, if I can just allow myself be and be ok with it, then I am being true to myself and that sets me free. If I am not in struggle with myself and I am not running after this arbitrary happiness, then I welcome it. I welcome simply being in the moment and treasuring the moment.
During this holiday season please don’t get hung up on feeling a certain way that you think you are supposed to feel. Embrace the magic of the moments, no matter what you are doing and let yourself be. Share love and share it with yourself the most, because you need it.
This summer is not like any other, but it is real, and it is here. We cannot afford to loose it. Not being able to do the exact things we did last year, does not mean we should not do anything. Finding new ways to spend the warm days is the current direction; finding new ways to structure days, to do things, to let go of the old, and reshape ourselves.