I think as humans we struggle with this concept. Some of us may feel strongly about viewing this one way or the other, but I struggle with the concept that happiness is a choice. We read endless articles, books, blogs, and little snippets about how to be happy and how we are in complete control of our mind. To be frank, I believe in many instances that yes, we are in control and we do have the power to control our mindset and feelings and our mental state. I believe that we do have the power to dig ourselves out of any kind of funk in any kind of upsetting feeling at any given time with the right amount of positivity.
But there is a very important contrary theme to this. I also believe that no matter how hard you try to be happy and in control of your mind, sometimes it’s just inevitable and happiness is truly not always the path you will arrive on. It’s life’s natural course that us humans travel through that involves our emotional state to vary in waves. No matter how big of an optimistic person you may be, we cannot always be happy and there is nothing wrong with that. Unfortunately, I think that some of us stay in this negative state for too long.
Now I am a firm believer in feeling both the highs and the lows, and it’s not just embracing the lows that becomes alarming. It’s that the longer you remain in these negative states, the harder it is to choose happiness. The harder it is to allow the natural fluctuation of emotions to occur and bring you back to a positive state. Happiness comes from consistent behaviors and I think the strongest kind of happiness arrives when you do allow yourself to be vulnerable, be upset, but find the ability to bring yourself back up as quickly as possible. It doesn’t mean you are immune to negativity, it means you have learned the stamina to overcome these negative feelings.
But what does it mean to be happy? See that’s the issue, happiness is not just a defined state, its an ever changing emotion, feeling, moment, adjective, and a whole bunch of mixed up describers that we roll up into one word hoping to describe our state.
The opposite of happiness isn’t always just sadness. Likewise, the opposite of sadness isn’t just being happy. Happiness stems from so many versatile points in our life that it truly would be impossible to always be happy. No matter how hard you choose to feel this way, I don’t think the point is to perceive life with a glass half full at any given second. Perceive life with truth. Feel every emotion from the ups and the downs and the parts that get you from one moment to another. See, I think these flashy posts say, “choose happiness” because that’s much easier than being realistic implying we should choose “to feel the bad the good and then find a way to overcome it”.
Happiness is a strange emotion and I think we just assume as humans it’s one feeling or another. However, it is clearly not. And we become stronger as humans when we allow ourselves to study this ever-changing state that we define as happiness.