Hello blog readers, long time, no talk!
I’ve recently started journaling again, and I was thinking about something this morning that I thought was worth discussing on here: happiness.
There seems to be a lot of people who think that being happy or trying to be happy is for selfish people. There’s this unwritten understanding that it’s noble to suffer, and the less happy you are, the better of a person you are. That if you’re working yourself to death, exerting yourself on a daily basis, sacrificing what you really want because it isn’t important enough to have, that you deserve a round of applause because you know how to “hustle” and you don’t let your own selfish needs or wants get in the way of what you really “should” be doing.
I think that’s all a load of bullshit.
I don’t put myself before the people I love when they need me, but I’m also not going to go through life completely neglecting my needs, my wants, or what makes me happy for the sake of presenting myself as some selfless “saint.”
Some people reading this may be pissed off by what I’m saying.
But here’s what I’ve noticed, at least in my own experience.
The people who never make time for themselves, the ones who work themselves to death at a job they despise that barely pays the bills, whose only objective is to get through the day or to barely get by—these are some of the most unhappy people I’ve ever encountered. And when you’re unhappy and you feel miserable, there’s no hiding that; the friends you manage to hold onto and the family you tell yourself you sacrifice for—they can tell how unhappy you are, and they probably don’t love being around you, either. Because let’s face it—that lifestyle could turn anyone into a grump (and it often does).
Now, I’ll admit, talking about this subject makes me a bit uncomfortable; I’m a Millennial, and we tend to have a bad rap for prioritizing happiness a little too much. Yes, some of us are real lazy bums… but I think every generation has its fair share of those.
I am not speaking from a lazy perspective.
What I am saying, though, is that there’s always gotta be balance. I believe in making short-term sacrifices to achieve happiness. I understand the importance of hard work, goals, and accomplishments. But letting yourself become a miserable, angry, unhappy person who’s jealous of everyone with a better life because you think it’s noble to suffer and barely get by—that’s just silly and, in my opinion, almost always an unnecessary way to go through life.
Opportunities present themselves to all of us, when we know how to look for them.
How many rags-to-riches stories have you heard by now? I’ve heard dozens.
And while I realize I was very blessed to be raised by a loving family who supported me and helped me to chase my dreams—I know not everyone can say the same. But I do believe we can all get the things we want if we’re determined to work for them.
And that’s the thing: we all have to work.
Unless you’re a Hilton, none of us get the things we want without figuring out how we can earn them.
So I guess what I’m trying to say is, we all have to work, and we all have to work hard—at least to some degree. But when you really think about it, the difference between those who live hand-to-mouth and those who live comfortably all comes down to what we’re working for.
If your goal is to bust your ass every day for the sake of “bragging rights” because you think there’s nobility in misery, then that’s all you’re ever going to accomplish.
But if you want more out of life, if you want to truly be happy, live comfortably, and feel successful (regardless of how you define success), you can have that too—it’s just a decision you need to make.
Before I end this post, I just want to be clear that I’m not trying to preach; I want this to inspire someone, and encourage them to not give up on what they really want. And, to be honest, I think I needed to see this post, too.
Getting what you want is seldom easy, and, at least in the short-term, it’s never as easy as giving up on your dreams.
But whether you aim high or settle for less than you deserve, whatever outcome you’re working towards is a decision you make yourself.
Why not aim high?