For Christmas, a good friend gave me a "happiness journal". It's used to prompt writing and journaling and general wonderful feelings. Chapter one has us listing the things we would like in our life to make us happy. My list was pretty straight forward:
- see a movie every week
- travel the world
- be as healthy and fit as I can
- be a successful opinion-ist
- have a big family (and I don't mean lots of kids here...)
- rescue animals and children
- read a book a week
- have a veggie garden and chickens
- go out for breakfast once a week
- work really hard for myself
I hate this list. Here's why.
When I was headed home to Tassie for Xmas, I stopped at Oporto for dinner. I wasn't feeling well, and hate flying when I'm feeling a bit trashy in the stomach. I ordered a veggie wrap, and a Coke (because nothing settles a seedy tummy like the burn of Coca-cola)
Did I want to upsize it and get fries? No thanks, I'm really not hungry enough to eat all this as it is.
I waited 13 minutes for that wrap (well done BTW, Essendon Airport Oporto) during which time I had the chance to read my receipt and the menu often enough to realise that getting "fries" would have cost me an extra two cents.
Yes. Yes, you spotty faced, greasy haired, rude teller. Yes I would like fries for TWO CENTS.
Edit: For the sake of the poetry I'm calling Oporto's chips, fries. I'm pretty sure they were chips, not fries. I like to be honest with you when I can. Also I'm not sure my teller was spotty faced, or greasy haired. But he was rude - so that's how I remember him.
You know what else I'd like now you mention it? Everything on my list. Everything you are telling me may be a possibility for my life. Yes thanks, I'll take it.
Why is it, we can be perfectly happy with where we are, what we've ordered, until we know that there is better. Better value for money. More time with people you love. More success and satisfaction. There are things I can do to make the world better.
I haven't finished chapter one of my journal yet, and I'm sure its not designed to drive me to depression. But, if happiness is only true when it is shared (see; If you're happy and you know it) can it also only be true when it is complete?
Or, am I constantly searching for ways to feel unhappy? For ways to explain away how wonderful the world can be, because sometimes, it's not perfect? I only have to list the things in my life that are good - a man who loves me, a perfect apartment, handsome friends, a beaglier who likes to lick - to know I am blessed. I am happy. But the quest for happiness, for success, for fulfillment, often stop me enjoying every moment.
I've got a week off starting Tuesday. My holiday challenge is to write everyday about what I have to be grateful for. Why everything I have, right now, is enough. In fact, it's more than enough, it's perfect.