THE UPS AND DOWNS OF A HAPPY LIFE
Have you ever felt so unhappy, filled so much with wanting, that in a hope to find light, you've typed "Happiness" into the nearest search bar and prayed to find something to change your life?
The internet searches for happiness.
I used to do this all the time. I'd throw this Hail Mary into the internet universe and hope that something came my way to help me be happier. I would do this on Google, on Facebook, in music apps, and podcast apps- pretty much anywhere there was a search bar where I could type "happiness" and hope for a miracle.
And sometimes it paid off. And sometimes, it didn't. But slowly and surely, I started to learn how to be happier. I started to read recommended books, I began to do the work, and I started to listen to other people talk about their own happiness and the steps it took to get there. And as I learned how to be happier, I found myself becoming happier in my life.
Not all rainbows and unicorns.
Now, I'm no longer filled with desperation to find happiness. I actually am happy! It took several years and a lot of hard work, self-reflection, and hope, but it happened! I no longer pray to the internet gods to help me, instead I look to myself and my trusted teachers for guidance.
But along the way, and even now, there are days where I am unhappy. Days where things feel bleak, where I feel sad, and where hope has difficulty making an appearance. It's not all rainbows and unicorns. Yes, even now, the last few days in fact, I've felt this way.
Why tell you this?
Because I want you to know that I've been there, so desperate for happiness, that I've simply searched for it in the simplest internet form and that, for the most part, I've found it! But I also have down days. A happier life doesn't mean everything is perfect always. There are ups and downs.
The differences between my life now and my life then though are significant. The down days are much fewer and far between. And I know how to handle them and above all else, my happiness levels (on a 1 to 10 scale) were at a 2 back then and now, on my down days, I would say I'm a steady 6. A 8-9 on my amazing days.
The real goal.
So while we all have the goal to feel happy and be happy in our lives, the goal should not be perfection and a non-feeling happy numbness but a life where we can feel our emotions but not be crippled by them. To have down days and be able to bounce back to our best selves. To embrace the ups and downs as learning opportunities. And to understand that a happy life is a life you choose for yourself, with the good and the bad, the ups and the downs.
So if you're having a down day, I am here to tell you it will be ok. It will all work out and all your hard work is not for naught. Down days are a part of a happy life and even self-proclaimed happiness experts have them. The difference is to recognize how far you've come and to bounce back.
Tune into Happiness Abound, The Podcast (Episode 134) for the audio reading of this blog article as well as to hear additional color commentary on the inspiration for this topic, the details of my down days, and more.