I think about the future... a lot. Probably too much.
You know what else I think about a lot?
Happiness. Who experiences it, how they experience it, what it takes to make people happy, what it takes to make me happy. Is the way my being happy somehow lesser than someone more influential's way of being happy?
Happiness is subjective. But we live in a society and a world that often makes it objective: you need this car, you need this degree, you need at least X amount of followers/subscribers/likes, you need to be married, you need to make X amount of money, and if you don't have any or all of those, well, then you're just a big, fat old, not-as-valuable failure... and no one will ever say that to your face even though they think it.
It's pretty harsh.
I've found myself starting to believe in those advertisements, the commercials, the viral videos of someone becoming so rich or famous or smart or successful (another can of subjective/objective worms)... the list goes on. It begins to feel like things are never enough. Things are never perfect.
Well... things aren't always perfect. But they can be momentarily. Right?
I found myself recently being incredibly happy at a being able to buy a couple pieces of great, name-brand and super expensive clothes
- and -
I found myself just as happy while I was sweaty and gross, my hair greasy, running on no-sleep and wearing the same clothes from the day before having just wrapped a film and heading back home, screaming Bare Naked Ladies "One Week" in the car with a close friend and colleague.
I feel just as good being able to afford something I have wanted for a long time, looking my best and being in the heat of industry networking events
when I am running in the rain to clear my head, when plans for a great date night end up going completely differently, and when I am hanging around the fire pit with my family, silent.
Some of those things are "acceptable" by societal standards. Others are not the "ideal". And honestly, that is okay. Because some of the things that bring me joy follow society's values, and some follow mine.
Plus you won't find happiness in only one thing, anyway. There is no way that all of your "happy places" are in the same space as your culture's.
I think that happiness isn't bound by one factor, it is bound by many: your values, your goals, your expectations, and so on. I think we experience different forms of happiness, but they are all equal.
Personal growth exercise for each day this week
Once a day, write down something:
-that you are grateful for
-you are proud of
-unexpected that made you happy today
Originally posted on The Wondrous Expanse.