So, I have been spending a lot of time thinking about happiness lately. Largely this has been motivated by the fact that life has taken a fairly steep turn for the worse in recent months. As should be noted from some of my recent posts my love life fell apart, which is really just the icing on the cake of suck that has been my life in these last few months. I failed to get into grad school, my job search has gone terrible, I have no money, and outside of my immediate family I have very few if any people actually in my day-to-day life.
I by no means think that I am alone in any of this. Quite to the contrary, I understand that I am merely one amongst many who are struggling in these times we live in. In fact, I know a few people who have it at least as bad as I do if not worse. I also understand that I have myself to blame for a good number of my problems. So why the hell have I been thinking about happiness lately?
Well the other day I was having a matter of fact discussion with my brother about the general shitstorm that life can be and he asked me, “what is happy”. As so often happens to me, that seemingly simple question sent my mind to work buzzing with the potential answers.
After much deliberation, the only satisfactory answer I have found is that being happy is making the decision to not be sad. I know it sounds kind of weird but I really believe it is true. When you are depressed you can choose to continue to wallow in your unpleasant feelings, remaining unhappy, or you can choose to not be sad. When you make that decision you will slowly but surely start building, or rebuilding, positive things in your life, and sooner or later you will be happy.
The one thing I do know is that you will never improve your situation by sitting and whining about things that have already happened. Sure we all need to vent every once and awhile, but eventually venting turns into bitching, and then bitching turns into whining. Next thing you know no one wants to talk to you because you’re entirely unpleasant to be around.
We have no way to fix the mistakes of the past. However, we can learn from the past in order to make the future better. So instead of wallowing in what could have been get out there and start thinking about what could be and make it happen. I know that is what I am going to be doing, because who really wants to be a miserable bastard for the rest of their lives.