I’m happy because it’s easier

Turns out, it is.

I’m at a point in my life where I often question what it means to be happy. Does happy mean being smily and jovial all the time? Does happy mean being content and not wanting for anything significant? Does happy mean feeling good and in control of one’s situation? Sometimes I wonder if I’m happy because I don’t feel how I think is stereotypically “happy” all the time. I’m always looking for what might be wrong, or for what could be better, or just worrying about not being happy enough, which ironically makes me less happy! So, clearly, I’ve been doing a lot of introspection about this, which reminded me of a conversation I had a few years ago…

Our team was providing some technologies for an outdoor skateboarding event in Barcelona (yeah, I know, sounds rough). It was in the summer and one reason Barcelona was selected was because the weather is generally nice that time of year. However, that week Mother Nature decided to throw us some curveballs. As the storm clouds rolled in we preapred for the worst, which most certainly came. Overnight we received a ton of rain, which soaked our outdoor skatepark and taxed the integrity of the less-than-optimal tents covering all of our gear. The next morning, rather than running through testing and rehearsals, we were all scrambling to dry off the course and clean up from the aftermath of the storm.

Though it all, everyone was pretty tired and crabby (me included, for sure). But, there was this one guy, Andrew, a course-builder and all around jack-of-all-trades, who was bouncing around with a smile on his face and a kind word to everyone, just doing whatever needed to be done. After watching him for awhile, and feeling envious toward what a good mood he seemed to be in, I finally asked him why he was so happy all the time. How he responded has stuck with me all these years. He said, “I’m happy because it’s easier.” I asked him what he meant by that and he rhetorically asked me if I had any idea how much energy it takes to be angry and pissed off? He said that most of the stuff around us we can’t control anyway and it’s way easier to just be happy, so he is. That’s it. He gave me a head-nod and went back to his work.

“I’m happy because it’s easier.”

So, listen, I’m not going to give you some list of things you can do to be happier. I’m not qualified for that and, heck, what do I know? As I said at the beginning, I’m not even sure if I’m happy (or happy enough…whatever that means). But, I know this…Andrew was right. Being angry, frustrated, annoyed, pissed off, etc., is exhausting. The glass-half-full, sucks. Worrying about what others have compared to you, sucks. Being disappointed that someone didn’t do something differently, sucks. Lamenting that things aren’t easier or that the world is out to get you, sucks. You know what doesn’t suck? Being happy! Being happy is fun. It feels good. It makes those around you feel good, which in turn makes you feel even better. And, guess what? It is easier.

So, if for no other reason, why not simply do what’s easier? Will it work all the time? Probably not. Might it work some of the time? Well, that’s up to you. I hope it does and I’d love to hear about it.

Thanks for reading! If you liked it, please hit the heart below and share the love. I’d also really like to hear your feedback in the responses on how this story relates to you, or hit me up at david[at]dialsmith[dot]com. Thanks, again : )

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