November 9, 2011

Yes, This New “Happy Movement” is Amazing, but Let’s Not Underestimate the Power of an Occasional Sh*tty Day. ~ Traci Wallace

We strive for it, we all want to be it, we talk about it, and it seems to be everywhere these days. Happy.

It’s kind of like “happy” is the new “green.” Remember about five to ten years ago (I’m bad with time) when everywhere you looked there were signs/advertising/etc: “Go Green,” “We’re Green,” “Are you green?” and “Live Green.” Green was everywhere for the first time, and it was cool to be green (which was great, because people actually started caring about the environment). Since returning from India after working in Delhi for almost two years, I have noticed “green” has been replaced with “happy” (oh, and in some cases replaced with Gluten-Free, but that’s a story for another time).

For example, it seems like every commercial on T.V. is “Be Happy,” “Drive Happy,” “Live Happy,” or “Eat Happy.” There are movies like “The Happy Movie,” “Happythankyoumoreplease” and there are websites like “Choose Happiness,” “Positively Positive” and even my own “Happy Song of the Day” site. Holy God, happiness is getting exhausting. 

If you know me or read my blog, you know that yes, I would consider myself a very happy and positive person. This is partly because my Mom brought me up in an environment where the overall theme was everything will always work out,” and also because I do yoga 4x a day (kidding, only twice).

Living in a state of happiness is amazing (as it should be). However, we shouldn’t underestimate the power of the occasional sh*tty day. Of course, when those bad days come I want it to end immediately (honestly, I don’t do sad very well). I go for a walk, do yoga, listen to music, whatever I can do to make that feeling go away as soon as possible. However, recently during a particular bad day, rather than running from it, I decided to sit in it, be in it, and in a weird way, enjoy it. And guess what? I actually did. The truth was, I wasn’t happy and I wasn’t going to pretend to be. Why should I? Why should anyone?  When we are happy, do we ever pretend to be sad?

A reoccurring theme that keeps coming up in my life is the realization that the happiest of moments (even the ones literally filled with butterflies and rainbows) don’t always lead where you think, and the worst moments can lead you to a place you never even knew existed. Regardless of what kind of moment you have, it always seems to make sense on the other side. That I do know.

So, as the world continues on with the “Happy Movement,” (which, don’t get me wrong, is amazing and I am totally on board) let’s make sure that we are happy because we are genuinely happy and when we are sad, be sad. Yes, the happy days are what life’s about, but on the days where the butterflies and rainbows are nowhere to be found, the good news is you can guarantee there’s probably a good lesson in there somewhere. But the only way you can find it is if let yourself be in it.


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