Thankful Thursday: 100 Days of Happy… Not What You Think

One Hundred Days of Happiness is just about halfway through and as it is every year, it’s a process.
A few things about the experiment are consistent:

It’s harder than you think
There is always something to learn about yourself
It draws criticism in some form

For those of you who read our blog fairly regularly you are well-versed in our life’s dramas, so you know that we are not so deluded or privileged to think that every day is full of rainbows, kittens, and unicorns. Further, this 100-day adventure of focusing on what’s working, what we are grateful for, is not intended to be an exercise in flaunting how great our lives are or portraying our day to day as unflawed perfection. It’s actually quite the opposite.

When I look back over the photos that I have posted in the last several weeks I think it’s rather apparent that my life is far from perfect or always joyful. But that may also be because I can remember what I was thinking when I posted some of them.

Here are a couple of examples:

Day25: Happiness is recovering after John’s 50-mile adventure yesterday. I think I’m more tired than he is. 

While those are the words I posted and they were/are true, I was also thinking that I was unbelievably sad and devastated that not only had I not been able to run but I had developed new foot pain issues. I spent 20 minutes crying in my bathroom before this photo was taken. But I wanted to be happy for John because it was an amazing accomplishment and it deserved to be celebrated. Some of you may read this and determine that I was instead being fake and dishonest. You are welcome to interpret it that way.
I, on the other hand, see it as trying hard to focus on what was good in my life and my husband’s race success was no less important just because it was in comparison to my own challenges.

Day 41: Happiness is discovering there are completely ridiculous but outrageously fun things like this in the world!!! 

Now, I love these headphones and seriously would like a pair. However, when I got home at 8 p.m. on this evening I was tired, hungry, and rather disillusioned. I had just taught yoga, my foot hurt, and I really wanted to cry.
But again, this exercise is calling me to focus on what makes me happy. And these headphones do, in fact, make me happy.

The truth of it is that I am depressed right now. I am struggling. But sitting around thinking about all the things that suck in my life isn’t likely to help me. Some days this practice may be the only time I can really drag myself to think about something good so isn’t that useful and productive?

Even some of you, our awesome readers, who are participating in this 100-day journey have shared that you have encountered resistance or criticism to this practice. Some of your social media followers have interpreted your posts to mean your life is awesome, amazing, and wonderful every second. Trust, we know that’s not true. It’s not true for anyone.

We imagine many of you started posting based on our thoughts and intentions about 100 Days of Happiness:

We all struggle. We all battle. We all have been wounded and there is nothing average or everyday about that. This happiness practice has been about showing up each day, being hopeful and turning our faces toward the warm rays of goodness. Expecting good can feel scary in this world.  It can feel like leaving yourself open for critique or unkind comments.

I am thankful for this 100 days because it’s pushing me. It’s challenging me, even when I don’t really want to be. We hope you keep posting, sharing, and feel free to offer this explanation, of sorts, to anyone who balks at your own search for happiness in the sometimes crappiness of life.

Sunshine & Sarcasm,

Lowi & G

 

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