Wednesday, August 12, 2009

A Be Happy Day

Last night on the telephone, my husband called himself "lazy." Now, while there certainly are days when my husband does absolutely nothing but eat and watch football all day (and those days are coming up, since football season has begun), he called himself this after spending about 4 hours or so exercising--after work. It seems after going to the gym for about TWO HOURS he decided to put in some more effort running up and down a hiking trail to some falls near our home. These falls--Wallace Falls--are really spectacular, but even getting to the bottom falls (the lowest of the three hiking areas) takes about an hour... and he ran up to the third landing--the Upper Falls--and back down in about two hours total. 

And yet, after all that, he called himself lazy. 

Only the lord knows what he's looking at when he examines his day... and it reminds me of how typical it is for us to see the hole in our own beings--however small it is--and blast it out of proportion so that we can still think ill of ourselves. I can lose 90 lbs., yet still criticize myself for the tummy bulge I will always have. I once complimented a coworker of mine, a woman who was always gracious, always perfectly dressed, always beautifully put together. I told her how wonderful she looked--how wonderful she always looked, and she replied, "If only I could lose these last ten pounds." 

What the hell was she talking about? I wondered, skimming over her 5-foot-2, 100-pound frame. And yet this was what she was thinking. 

In graduate school it was the same: fellow students who received a test back and obsessed about the five points they'd missed, not the 95 points they'd managed to get. We are too hard on ourselves, too quick to judge ourselves to find the flaws.

Yet, I suppose, another alternative isn't so great, either (and you know this kind of person, too): This one is so busy finding the mote in other's eyes, so to speak, that he can't see the huge log sticking out of his own. Easy to feel good about one's self when one sees the rest of the world as so comparatively imperfect. 

I have a solution to all of this, though--it's one I work at for myself, at least, and it makes me much happier. I was reminded of it while checking e-mail this morning, for my daily astrology reading (through MSN) told me to keep being nice, to spread my joy and kindness around, since I was one of the sources of kindness remaining in the world (or roughly that, since I didn't save the reading). Here's my joy to share: You are a great person, as am I, and the more we concentrate on our talents, our inner joy, and what we do have, what we do well, the happier everyone will be. Instead of picking at yourself all day (or others, though you probably don't know who you are if you do that), find the all the good you can today. Write it down, if you have to, if the happy thoughts won't stick in your head for longer than a moment. 

Now, once the day is done, come back and share what you noticed. Spread your own happiness around a bit. I'll let you complain another day, but not today. 


  1. I find that I am just the opposite, I think I go above and beyond… being lazy it what I work for, it is my dream to do what I want when I want.
    I am healthy, happy and doing ok financially. My family is good and healthy, everyone is employed, life is good. I live in a partially free country {usa} and feel good about the future. I wish only the best to whomever reads this and wish they can see the good side of life, and know it is there if you just look for it…
    p.s- glad your back…

  2. It's a little late in the day for me to start this.

    I'll check back in tomorrow.

  3. There are few things that give me greater pleasure than singing. And singing I have done.

  4. Part of a be happy day for me is stopping in to see friends I haven't visited with for awhile. It wasn't a planned visit, and we didn't visit long. The happiness was in seeing my friends and knowing they are doing okay. "Happiness!"