Making Happiness the Alpha Emotion

Snails Love the Rain

I was happy today. I drove around like a fool singing to the sky and tapping the steering wheel as if it were a drum. I felt alive. As if I owned the world and no one could take that away from me. I was the president of life. I wish it were possible to grab that feeling and put it in my pocket and never let it go.

I tend to have these self-reflections more often than not about where I might be if I could stay in this great mood forever. But then I wonder what the world would be like without rain. Sure, it would be great for a while to walk around in the sunlight and give people a gregarious point followed by a confident smile. The world would feel brighter for a few months, of course, until the plant life began to die and shrivel to dust. The water would dry up, and the clouds would fly away magically. The planet would become a desert and with it, humans would revert back to being reptilians. (Hey! It could happen!) Eventually, we would all die or unify, build a large rocket ship and search the galaxy for another planet we could infest.

It’s funny that we see something we like and expect it to never change. Humans are terrible at dealing with change. We have this absurd notion that if everything stayed the same we would be happy. Or that we are in some way this superior being in the universe that doesn’t have to follow the rules of balance. The more I think about it the more silly it sounds. I do want to be happy all the time, but I would never wish happiness was the only emotion we “decided” to constantly embrace. If the earth must deal with the weather, why shouldn’t I have to deal with the ups and downs of the human mind?

It’s my opinion that people have it all backwards. Being happy is not as far away as we think. Perhaps, the problem is not finding happiness, but rather seeing it. We live in this reality of objects we are unable to move through; all of them shiny and or useful. It is no wonder we seek happiness at an external level. I have a hard time trying to figure out why I see myself as a whole instead of a part of something. Sure, I am one person, but I am also one person in a society of over seven billion other people. I have my opinion, and you have yours. But is it not the nature of chaos to search for organization?

I do not believe my problem is the absence of happiness, or that it is some kind of object I can find lying on the ground somewhere in an undiscovered corner of the world. But instead, it is my focus and my ignorance of the other emotions struggling to surface. I try to remember the last time I sat down and really thought about what is making me sad. Why don’t I do that? Why do I expect time to take care of it for me instead of simply dealing with my problems? I need to sit down and really examine why I am feeling sad and just deal with it. I mean really deal with it, not hide it and expect it to stay in a bubble until it leaks throughout my mind.

The truth is I am scared. I am afraid of the truths I might discover, and the judgments I may receive from others as well as myself. How silly to be afraid of emotions; as though they were a pack of snarling wolves chasing me through the woods. Fear is such a powerful emotion. I have somehow allowed it to trump the rest of them, and keep me in this perpetual state of confusion. I am done with that.

Tomorrow is going to be different. I will not try and deprive myself of particular feelings to give disappointment more exercise. Instead, I am going to allow emotions to be, and then try to find those happy moments in between. Maybe, if I stop putting all of my focus on trying to force happiness into my mind I can allow my emotions to be, and allow happiness to take on the dominant role; be my alpha emotion.