A Long Road To Happy...
"Wherever you go, there you are...."
Have you ever caught yourself swearing that you would never do something or would never end up on a path you knew wasn't for you? Or have you talked yourself into going to a place or doing something you just knew would solve all of your problems?
I am guilty of both of these.
This is what we strive for. This is what so many seem to constantly be chasing. Some find it, some just naturally "have it," and some claim they cannot and will not ever find it.
To be super real with y'all, happiness is something that I was always searching for. I was able to see the happiness that everyone else was experiencing, but never was there any for me. I blamed my upbringing for the lack of happiness. I never saw myself as worthy of that version of happiness I was searching for. When there was something I said would bring me happiness, once that thing showed up, I found a way to see all of the flaws and why it wasn't what it should have been.
Although I hated it, I was really good at hanging out with misery...spending time at the "Pity Party."
....I'll be happy when...
"When" would show up...and then the "but" would closely follow.
I justified. I put stipulations on it. I was really good at blaming everything and everyone and always managed to find a way to push out the good that had come my way. It was never enough...I was never enough.
Ooohhh, I was a pro at this! I thrived in chaos and although I felt like I was so close to getting that happiness, I always found a way to run when it didn't follow how I thought it should be. It was my environment. It was the people. It was the job. It was never MY fault or way of thinking.
So I would find a new scenery. I would cut off old connections. I would change jobs.
Nothing seemed to be working.
"God, why won't you just let me be happy? When will it be my turn?"
"Once I get through this, THEN I will be happy."
"Once I get away from this job, THEN I can breathe and enjoy my life."
"Once I move out of this apartment and move to this area, THEN I will be able to do more and meet the right people. Yeah, THEN I will be happy."
I. Kept. Running.
Sprinting in place, getting nowhere fast is what I always called it.
It was almost like a drug in all honesty...
I would feel miserable and picture this amazing "high" of what that happiness would look like when I got my hands on it. When I would first move, change jobs, hang around new people, it was AMAZING. Life was so good and I obsessed over this finally putting me on the path to all I ever wanted! Then when the novelty would ware off, I was disappointed, frustrated and depressed. This isn't what I thought it was going to be. This isn't how it should be...
It was a viscous cycle, really.
I was all over the map on different careers, drowning myself in staying busy so I didn't have to just sit still in my own thoughts. I had moved about ten times in eight years. I met so many groups of people...searching for those that would make me feel good about myself.
At the end of each day, though....it was always just me...alone.
When things weren't in motion, I hated the reality. I dwelled on everything and why it was so bad. I blamed everyone and everything else for being burned out from running non stop. If people would just appreciate me more or if these things wouldn't happen, then I would actually enjoy it and feel that happiness in what I was doing. There it was again...running.
So finally...in one of the many dark moments...sitting there all alone...nowhere to run....
I decided to take a deep look in the mirror.
I had always heard people talking about how happiness was a choice and my "Negative Nancy" self would always call bullshit.
"That's just too easy to say and if all it took was making THAT simple of a decision, we wouldn't have so many sad people."
....But I started to condition myself. Just like a muscle in the gym, I had to train my brain to think of the positives in a situation rather than the negative. Even though the "realistic" thoughts and the negative thoughts were sitting pretty in the front row, I had to make it a point to really push those to the back.
Simple? Yes. Easy? Not so much.
But I did it...and the more I did it, the more I realized that those individuals who preached that ridiculous advice...were actually onto something.
The other thing I started to realize is that the common denominator along this entire journey....was me.
Whether it was a new job, new place, new relationship, new people, or new experience...I was the one that was always there. So how could I be blaming everything else for what was wrong when everything was changing but me?
It was that strong dose of reality that if I truly wanted to live that life of happiness, it was going to take work. It was going to take some deep work! It was going to be some long, dark nights with the one and only, Jayme.
I had to do some soul searching to find what happiness really felt like, meant and was for ME. Then, I had to have the conversation on why I ran from it or didn't believe I was worthy of it. Lastly, I had to shift my perspective and recognize each day I was faced with a choice...many of choices. Was I going to let things out of my control, control me? Was I going to see it as something that was happening TO me or FOR me?
It was time to recognize and embrace all that I could in this very moment that was bringing me satisfaction and happiness. It was time to be happy in the current moment while learning to strive for even more happy to come. It was time to become more aware and start training how I saw the world around me.
Don't get me wrong...there are still days I end up stopping back in to that pity party. There are times when I feel sorry for myself and question if I'm worthy of some of that happiness I am aiming for.
It's been a long road to happy.
The road has winded left and right, taking some pretty sharp turns. It has also gotten pretty bumpy and I've caught myself on the "scenic route" FREQUENTLY.
I will say that even if I may not have yet fully "arrived" to that final destination, I am very much enjoying the city of Happy that I am currently in and am excited for the continuation of that very journey.
So to wrap up this post, I want this to encourage somebody. It doesn't matter what road you are on or if are currently stuck on a dirt path.
In this very moment, you have a choice.
Stop. Take a look around.
CHOOSE to see what even just a sliver of happiness lies with where you are right now. Start walking. Look a little harder. Point out some more pieces of happiness. Just. Keep. Choosing.
....and remember, wherever you go, there you are.
Are YOU going to be in your happy...
....or will you choose to keep running from it?
With Love and Happiness,
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