You will never be all-happy. Some days are harder for all of us, some happier. We all have days filled with grief we don’t think we can bear, some filled with anger or shame, some filled with love and joy. Most are somewhere in the middle, with elements of all, and what we choose to focus our attention on, moment to moment, decides how happy we are.
The art of being happy in the middle is in taking pleasure in and be able to call up the moment-to-moment happy experiences of life. It’s a foreground/background thing. Are there birds chirping and calling in the background for instance? Bring them fore and let them bring you joy. Notice and enjoy the dog coming over to have her ears scratched. Eating an apple. Hearing music you love. Lunch with a friend. Something funny or touching on Facebook. A good book or a good movie. Look for them. Document them – and soon you will see how MUCH happiness you actually have.
When I was deeply depressed, I thought everyone else was happy – or mostly happy – which made me feel even worse about not achieving that idyllic state. And I believed that even if I was momentarily not depressed, the monster was always lurking under the surface ready to drag me down and drown me. It never occurred to me when I was down that the bluebird of happiness was also always waiting just beyond the fog to lift me up and set me free.
Beyond that, if I did have some pleasure – and I did – I discounted its importance compared to the burden of my despair and my (supposed) “flawedness.”
There is no all-happy or all-sad. I made the depression even bigger than it was, believing THAT was my (only) real reality. Foreground = depression. Background = happiness.
Shift it around. We need to stop thinking in absolutes – they are a trap. We can train ourselves to be happier by disciplining our awareness. Does this ring true for you??