I’ve been working on realizing what truly makes me happy.
Do you ever think about that yourself?
What makes you happy?
There are some days I plan to do absolutely nothing. I have to work at doing absolutely nothing, so these days are hard for me to get through. Why do I do it? In order to quiet the buzz in your mind, you need to actively be quiet. If I tell myself in advance that I need a quiet day, then at least I’m prepared for it. I still resist quieting the buzz in my mind though. I don’t know why.
I am just not evolved enough to be a calm person yet, but I’m working on it. Figuring out what makes me happy means that I have an easier time of processing all of that stored up crap that makes me unhappy.
My mind is always turning ideas over, planning something, designing something, writing something. I have fun sharing all of this and asking questions and exploring what makes other people who they are. I enjoy being curious. I walk away from every situation with the gift of knowledge, or a secret, or a recipe, or a picture…all metaphorical. I store them up and then bring them back out and touch them, pull up the corners and look underneath, hold them up to the light, analyze them, and sometimes I try to make them better.
Even with the processes firing on all eight different cylinders, I am still very focused on what I’m doing at the moment. Which is why I think meditation has been a challenge for me. Contemplation seems to be a much better use of my brain, but I am willing to hone the sharp edges so I might enjoy being in the moment a bit more.
I also dwell in the past some days. Not every second, but I will remind myself of something that has happened to me. I give myself a few moments to be grateful that I made it out, or through, or around whatever it was and I move on. Sometimes I cry. Sometimes I get angry. And lately, I find that I can laugh about a lot of stuff that used to make me cry. I call those episodes, growth spurts.
When you have lived a life that demands you repress many of life’s disappointing and hurtful episodes, all for the sake of decorum or business or to save face, you tend to store those bad feelings up for a more private introspection, but sometimes you just keep adding to the pile. Eventually you’re opening the closet door, quickly throwing stuff in and then slamming it shut before everything you’ve already shoved in there comes toppling out.
You really need to get in there and let those feelings out so you can feel them and express whatever emotion is attached to it. I heard a saying that says time moves in one direction and memories move in the other. I guess I need to travel to the past in order to make those leaps into the future.
Just because you tamp it down or forget for a short time that it happened to you, doesn’t mean that it ever goes away. Get that nasty stored up crap out of your head and some place you can move through it entirely and process it. The relief and the healing you’ll feel are tremendous and gratifying.
Would you rather clean out that dark and scary closet, or have it manifest into an incurable cancer that eventually steals your last moments on the Earth?
I have a new thing I’m doing that has a lot to do with my exploration of what truly makes me happy. You should try this too. I have found that I receive instantaneous relief.
- I physically sigh, the wind comes out of my lungs, my muscles relax and I become calmer than I was just a moment before.
- Now pick something that annoys you. I’m going to go with something small and random; I get all the way to the other end of the beach road on my bicycle, miles from home, and my front tire goes flat. I don’t have a pump, a patch or a cell phone…and it’s hot as blazes. I’ve already ridden for miles and all of my spandex is stuck to me like plastic wrap. Sweat has stung my eyes so much that they are bloodshot and my legs are wobbly and sore. Hold that memory in your mind and feel all of those physical and frustrating mental details.
- Take a breathe.
- Close your eyes and take another.
- Pretend you are alone. No one is going to come and get you. The one person you can truly count on is you. You have to be able to count on yourself. Besides, in my scenario, my husband is at work and I can just hear what he would tell me “the walk will do you good”.
- Now tell yourself “Life is good”. Because it really is 🙂
- Name each reason this is true.
- Keep breathing.
Your reasons don’t have to be earth shattering or even deep. Here are a few of mine. Feel free to poach.
- I have a good life.
- I am loved.
- I like where I am.
- I made it this far and didn’t die.
- I can still stand on my own two feet.
- This isn’t the end of the world.
- This won’t kill me.
- I can do this.
- I can deal with this.
- I need to find someone watering their lawn with a sprinkler system and stand in the water for a few minutes.
- I can use the bike as a walker and start moving towards home.
- I’ll get home eventually.
- This isn’t so bad.
- At least I don’t have to pee…yet.
And then I move on.
In the end you have to decide who you are. You have to know where you’re going, how you’re going to get there and what you need in order to make the trip a good one. Sure, there are things I’d like to change. There are things I’d like to improve. There is work yet to be done.
I don’t dread doing the work.
I don’t dread taking those breaths.
I don’t dread the walk. As long as I’m moving, I’m alive.
And while life is happening, I am still me. I am the person that will be with me the rest of my life here. And I have to like who I am, just the way that I am and the way I will become.
Life and what makes me truly happy is something to look forward to.
I’ll keep you posted.
You keep breathing.