Should You Be Happy?
What’s funny about life is that you can be happy ABOUT your life, but not necessarily happy IN your life.
You’ve checked most, if not all of the boxes. A lot is great. On paper, everything looks swell!…but you can’t shake the nagging feeling that you “should” feel better than this.
How confusing, Life.
You start to wonder, “What’s wrong with me?” and start SHOULDing on yourself, “Stop feeling this way; you have so much to be GRATEFUL for. SO many people have it worse.”
And this is because we consolidate being happy ABOUT our life and being happy IN our life into one glob of a thing, but they are very different things with very little overlap. There’s likely a Venn diagram I could draw here, but I’ll refrain.
To make matters more crazy-making the things to be happy ABOUT are more quantitative, easier to measure, more tangible, and easier to put on that life checklist: ✅ I have a good-paying job, ✅ my partner is a good person, ✅ I like where I live well enough, ✅ I have healthy kids, etc.
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But being happy IN your life might require some less checklist-able things like feeling deeply seen and understood, feeling energized by what fills the majority of your day, feeling connected and like emotional intimacy is a part of your closest relationships, feeling like your life has meaning and purpose, and perhaps physical intimacy isn’t awkward and/or non-existent.
To make matters more perplexing there is no one-size-fits-all recipe for this and the ratios of these ingredients and what you need to create a life that works for YOU will depend on your personality type, what you value, how you feel loved, what energizes you, etc.
SO, we can’t compare notes on what makes us happy IN our life…and in the departments of “Am I ok?”, “Should I need this?”, and “Should I feel this way,” we REALLY like to compare notes. [SPOILER ALERT: this will have you feeling like a broken failure in no time.]
Because of the fact that there is NO ONE-SIZE-FITs-ALL recipe for this *feeling happy in your life* 2 people who are sharing a relationship, household, and even children can have TOTALLY differing opinions, perspectives, and feelings about said life. The person who feels less icky about it might prioritize different IN-your-life things.
Is it possible that no one is wrong? That maybe you should be feeling the way you’re feeling? And that your feelings are growing-in-size flashing neon signs directing you to something not-so-easy-to-put-on-paper (or put your finger on) that you need more of?
Ahhhhhh, that feels a little better doesn’t it?
You deserve happy relationships,
P.S. - If you're a Mom, one way to put your finger on what you need more of and to get some specific-to-you next-best-steps is by joining us in wellMAMA Virtual Workshop + Community. Our next session begins 9/6. Use code ILIKEYOU to get $20 off through Sunday, 8/28/22.
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ARTICLES by Mika Ross