Wednesday, August 22, 2012

No ... or Yes!

I read a lot of information about Happiness. It started when I read the Happiness Project (a book I read really quickly – and then re-read in pieces), and then I continued reading blogs and articles about Happiness, because I find it so interesting. Here’s the thing though – everything about it is so conflicting.
Some experts say you should say no more. Some experts (and by experts I mean anyone who really wants to talk about it) say you should say yes more. Some experts tell you to take a break and enjoy downtime. Others say workout more.  And while I’m pretty sure I’ve never read anyone say to overeat or get drunk, there is a whole school of thought on how “clean” your diet needs to be in order to have your happiness come from Health. (And I think we can all agree Kris Carr seems to have found balance).
My point is … trying to be happy is hard. And confusing.
The other night I was in yoga, trying to not think, and I started to overthink this whole yes/no thing. About a year ago I was fully in the camp of say no to stuff. Someone told me I say yes to everything and maybe I should be more selective. I went a little overboard and just kind of got used to saying no to everything. Guess what happens when you do that? Requests stop coming in.
And recently I’ve just stopped the whole no thing. Sure time is a constraint, but I’m getting tired of saying no so that I can be what? More aggressive? Better respected? Appreciated more? Happier? I don’t know.
The truth is, I like people who don’t say no all the time. I love when I message someone for coffee, and the answer is sure, I can meet you in 5 minutes. Or when I want to try out a new class, start a reading club or just hangout out… and it’s a yes. Guess what? I don’t automatically think that person has no life. I think that it’s awesome they made time for me. And I want to be more like that. Or I want to go back to being like that.
This weekend I’m running in a 10k. I’m excited.  Why am I doing it? Because some women who will be running the Disney Princess Half invited me to join them, and meet up after. (Princess Power!) It would have been easy for me to say no, after all, I’m not 100% confident in my running yet. A 10k is still a bit overwhelming.  But saying yes … felt really good!
And, as for yoga (yes, still going all the time). That’s where this all began. As much as I love it, there are soooo many nights when I’m just tired. And 8:30 seems late. Or I don’t know the teacher. Or I don’t feel like it.  And I get a message from my mom and I just say yes. Because pretty much as soon as I get there, and class starts … I’m so glad I went.
So, maybe I’m going to skip the no’s for awhile. And just embrace saying yes. 
And while I'm at it, I may not have found the key to Happiness quite yet, but here's some stuff I know for me:
  • Sleep is good, but I'm a morning person. Waking up super early (4:20 am) to workout does make me happier, even if some people are just crawling into bed
  • I equate happiness with food. If I'm eating healthily I'm happier about my body, but chocolate makes me instantly happy. It's just something I need to accept
  • I am happiest surrounded by people, but also really happy to be alone.
  • I truly believe that you can't be happy in every situation, but outlook plays a big role
  • And .... I'm pretty much happiest in Disney World! Running through the castle, accomplishing a goal and getting a medal after. I can't think of anything better.
So, what makes you happy?

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