Cross-posted to my Tumblr, where things are usually more Tumbly.
Happy to Be Miserable is a thoughtful essay about, among other things, how happy emotions are harder for people to express than negative emotions. Love, awe, gratitude and joy are more difficult to convey, the theory goes, because it leaves us vulnerable. We’re exposed because happiness is hooked to the future, which is of its own nature uncertain. Negativity can be immediately expressed, and so it scratches a different itch. Basically, while being happy is better for you in the long term, we’re all kinda lazy and like the short term release valve, the quick hit.
The word “community” is mentioned several times in the essay, and so I wanted to put in my own two cents, since how to build and maintain a positive community is a huge part of my life – both personally and professionally.
Being snarky-funny on the internet is sort of what the intertubes are made of. It’s de rigeur. I wouldn’t have the internet any other way.
So, I try to take the long view. The concept of community means that we’re all here looking out for each other. Ain’t nobody here but us chickens, so let’s keep trying to reach out from a place of empathy. Keep top-of-mind that most of us are happy to be miserable, and accept each other in our moments of less-than-perfection. I don’t succeed at being happy all the time, because that ish is HARD WORK. The only way happy gets easier is practice. Practice not reacting in a frustrated way. Practice laughter. Practice going just a little further into the future.
Practice, practice, practice. Happy is contagious.