Stop Chasing Happiness
Yeah, that’s right! No, you didn’t read the heading wrong. When I first was thinking about this concept, I was a little hesitant to put my thoughts into words. However, I want this post to be an important reminder that chasing happiness just makes it go farther away.
If you haven’t heard of the saying that happiness is a journey not a destination, then let me ask you what are you doing with your life? Don’t you have Pinterest? Don’t you spend hours searching through quotes? No? Why not? Jk! ( p.s. some days I do spend hours that I do not have on Pinterest reading quotes, FYI)
Real talk though (s/o DJ Khaled)…
I am one of those people (like many) who has always believed that people should always be happy or try to be happy at all times. Now, I look back and realize that was a waste of energy and time on my part. I am not saying you should try to be NOT happy but this notion of always having to be happy, always being in this state of happiness is unhealthy. This chase may have you looking for happiness in the wrong places and it may actually make you less happy because all of a sudden not reaching this certain level of happiness you have created in your mind is causing disappointment and in turn unhappiness.
It has taken me a few years to realize that it is OKAY to have a bad day. It is OKAY to feel unhappy at times. It is OKAY to feel as if you don’t have your life together or feel as if you are not where you thought you would be at a certain point in your life. Don’t get caught up thinking that one bad day means every day is going to be a bad day. Don’t get caught up thinking that you have to be at a certain point in life to be happy. Just say “Bye Felicia” to that type of thinking.
The drive to constantly be happy can be destructive because this hole that the chase creates may just keep getting bigger. The desire to want more keeps growing. Think about it, when we get a salary increase, we want more because we think that will make us more happy. If we get an apartment, we want a house. If we have an iPhone 6, we want an iPhone 6s plus. If we get a Toyota Camry, we want a Lexus. Heck, people even say that getting one tattoo means you are going to want more tattoos. Nothing wrong in having #goals but getting that higher salary, that house, that better phone or that better car etc., does not guarantee a lasting state of happiness. Materialistic things aside, even things such as completing a degree, mastering a skill, crossing an item off your bucket list and so on and so forth, do not guarantee a sustained state of happiness.
Once you achieve those things and you have achieved that state of happiness, you may end up going back to the chase to achieve a higher state of happiness. But when does that stop? When do you finally realize that all this time you have spent striving to be happy, you have actually lost time being happy? Why not recognize that happy moment in life, live it, enjoy it and move on. Move on knowing that the next day may knock you off your balance but it will be okay and you will experience that moment of happiness again. Don’t chase it, live it.
The more we wish for things to be a certain way, the more disappointment we are creating for ourselves because not everything will be the way we want it to be. That is not guaranteed! It’s life, we will have good days and we will have bad days. Do not center your life around this idea of – if I do this, I will be happy and if I do this, then that means I will be sad and I shouldn’t do it.
Do not settle around this concept that there will be a point in life from which on you will ALWAYS be happy. Don’t wait to live in the moment of happiness that is in front of you, for this imaginary level of happiness that may never arrive.
I am learning to accept that there will be days that bring me happiness and days that bring me sadness. I am learning to accept it all as it comes. Rather than chasing happiness and putting it on this pedestal, I am just throwing out the pedestal all together.
Let go of this idea of happiness as being something you have to arrive at and just learn to enjoy it where you find it as you travel through this little thing called life.
Until next time…