Monday, August 24, 2009

Practice makes Happy

Practice being excited.
Bill Foster

They say practice makes perfect. I don't think that is true. But practice, of some things, can make habit. And habituation might lead to perfection moreso than just practice.

I learned in a psychology class the mere act of smiling can lead to a boost in one's mood. So maybe, people need to practice being happy. Practice smiling, practice acting cheerfully, practice enjoying life... and maybe we will habituate those things and eventually we will just be good at being happy.

The other night I was talking to a friend of mine... For both the protection of my friend and her downer demeanor and because I have the literary license to do so, I shall call this person Grumbles. The funny thing about Grumbles is that although she has been grumbling about life whenever I talk to her, she is also one of the happiest, perkiest people I know. I love to be with her because it is so easy to make her laugh and that in turn makes me laugh ergo making me happy. But for some reason she has a problem. I once heard of this problem in a movie and I have since adopted the term as part of my vernacular. She, like a handful of my friends and perhaps myself, are afflicted by "chronic dissatisfaction". Although she has many things to be grateful for and many opportunities and blessings in life she can take advantage of, like myself, she manages to find what is wrong with her life instead of looking at what is right. She sees the dead-ends and the closed doors before she sees the detours and open windows.

There is nothing wrong with being chronically dissatisfied... except that it can put a strain on one's own happiness ability as well as their relations with friends and loved ones. People find it tiresome to put up with the chronically dissatisfied. Friends try to help them through their issues but their advice is always met with "but"'s and "what if"'s. Although I am guilty of this as much as Grumbles and I defend myself by saying I am just perceptive of the obstacles, I am also the one who says "every problem has a solution". Because it's true.

Sometimes people just like to vent which is fine. But the problem with venting is it turns into a habit and that habit leads to the tempermant of chronic dissatisfaction. So to counter this, one must practice the habits of a happy temperment. One has to practice smiling for all the little reasons that might make them smile, or to try and laugh at anything that can be laughable (alternatively, making someone else laughs works twice as well because it no doubt makes you laugh but also, it makes someone else happy which makes you happy back.)

One also has to practice finding the solutions. If one's dissatisfaction has real cause, Grumbles for instance needs to learn how to resolve her unhappiness and find hope in opportunities. Practice making opportunities helps too. How many times do you walk along and actually see "open doors"? Pretty rare I find... what happens more often than not is you need to know where you want to go and then knock on those doors and create your own opportunities.

Figure out what doors you really want opened, Grumbles... then find a way to get them to open. <3

No comments:

Post a Comment