Tag Archives: happiness

Winter Solstice: Celebrate Another Year of Not Going Postal (Yet)

It’s the day after the winter solstice, which — if you’re anything like me —traditionally represents the height of your winter madness and the rock-bottom of your deeply-dug “I-Hate-People” hole.

But I feel pretty ok. And it’s not because something particularly glittery or exciting has occurred in my life. Life keeps pooping along like it always does. And I’m not feeling joyous or running through the streets of Boston throwing tinsel and anything that can be tinseled. I’m still anti-tinsel. It’s not holiday mania, in other words. But I feel ok, and that is kind of remarkable.

For the last few years, I have faked my way through the holidays like a champ. I was still working on getting myself settled and divorced and yes, probably hoping that by the next Christmas my cup would run over with joy. And now I’m here. My cup runneth over with “just ok.” Or maybe my cup just runneth not with misery. My cup is legitimately fine, thank you.

Enough about my cup.

This perfect little illustration describes how I feel right now (Not mine, but borrowed from Hyperbole and a Half — a wonderful blog that I can’t recommend enough).

hyperboleandahalf

I’m feeling empowered by my state in life. Which is weird because I don’t have a lot of the stuff I’m “supposed” to have locked in. (relationship, mortgage, kids, clear sense of exactly what the rest of my life will look like, an unbroken door handle on my car, etc.) I feel like I either:

A. Accidentally stumbled upon the secret to happiness, which is to fail at life and figure out what you want.; or

B. Hit my head and am in a drug-induced coma, so none of this is actually real.

Either way, I’m just going with it. Next week, life will probably kick my ass just for being so damned cocky.

How are you all? Doing ok? 

Advertisements

Screw Happiness: Why I Love Being Irritable

I’ve made my feelings known the benefits of just saying “Fuck It.” Go ahead and say it. It feels good, right? It touches into something genuine. For just a moment, you let go and allow your inner-asshole to emerge, and it rings a bell. Fuck it. Yessss.

Must. Force. Happy. Now.
If you google “Happiness,” you’ll find endless, sometimes conflicting articles touting the appropriate recipe to “Get happy!” The exclamation point implies a level of excitement and enthusiasm that is hard to achieve in life without the help of drugs and/or massive denial of reality. It also sounds like a demand. Do it. Get happy, goddamn it! You’re not happy! What’s wrong with you?

IMG_0311

 Couldn’t we just be a little cranky? Please?

This pressure to be cheerful is ever-present. We view and post selfies with grins so wide it is hard to discern whether the person in the photo is ecstatic in their surroundings or grimacing in pain. We all do it, if we’re being honest. I am as caught up in this happiness craze as anyone, which is to say that intermittently make myself absolutely miserable by Trying! To BE! Happy!!!

And for the record, I’m ok. It’s not a cry for help. But could we cool it we with the never-ending Joy Olympics and aim for something richer and more sustainable? Maybe we could aim to just be content. Or – when life is handing us multiple lemons – we could be angry or sad or distraught about the lemons for a few minutes before throwing a sheet over it and acting like it didn’t happen? “Move along folks. Everything’s happy here. Nothing to see.”

Let’s hear it. I want to hear about your bad day when you’ve had one. I want to laugh about our shared misery – the absurdity of it all. The happy Happy HAPPINESS is giving me a severe case of the creeps. Please make it stop.

Somebody strike a Match (dot-com)

Online Dating Gives me Agita  Here’s what happens every time I start to fill out an online profile: I get as far as filling out all of the questions, and then I look at the pictures of prospective dates and feel the need to flee the scene. It’s not that there are not any decent men online. There is a mix of good and bad, like everywhere else. It’s not their fault at all, since I’ve never reached the whole “Talk to online stranger” phase of the transaction. It’s just that I feel like a deli item, on display: “Please do partake of my choice cuts of pastrami.” Is it clear now why men are knocking down my door to get to the wonder that is me?

And so, I ask for your help, dear reader. Share with me your wisdom.

Kiss My Bliss: 6 Secrets to Ignoring Trendy Self-Help Advice

 

blogger-image--178563713
1. Keep the Post-Its to a minimum.
When you are in the thick of trauma, and in need of a lift, I whole-heartedly support writing yourself little notes to get you through the day. “You are a good person, and a loyal friend.” –Yes. You are. Good for you. I think so, too.

But if you find yourself plastering so many happy notes around your bathroom mirror that your bathroom wall is now a yellow and pastel blue decoupage of self-esteem building, you have gone too far. You’ve crossed the Rubicon into Crazytown, Population: You.

And, hey – it’s ok. I totally get it. I love you, too. But let’s take those down and start moving forward, and into the world. We have all been there. No judgement.

2. You can judge a self-help book by its cover. Here are some tips.

Continue reading

Here it comes! Wait for it…

44109-Happiness-Loading“There’s a kind of freedom in being completely screwed… because you know things can’t get any worse.” ~Clark Kellogg (Matthew Broderick), in The Freshman.

My life looks a little tragic, today, but not in an interesting or romantic way. I’m not likely to get a write-up in the paper any time soon (“Hero Woman Impales Self on Fencepost While Pulling Toddlers from Burning Building”). I’m also not living with poverty or illness or any number of horrible problems that other unlucky souls are forced to contend with. In this time and place, on this planet, I am one of the lucky ones.

*There,  that’s my obligatory humble preamble. Everything that follows will be pure navel-gazing, whining, and duck-face selfies with cocktails.

My tragedy is pretty dull, though I have been chucked through an industrial-sized emotional shredder over the last ten years. The short version: Continue reading