Hey guys! I’m back with another simply reflecting post, but this one is going to be a little different. In the past my simply reflecting posts have been me reacting to a podcast that I have listened to, and I’m still doing that in a way. However, I’m more so going to be reflecting to the overall theme of the episode more than what the speaker said about it, which I guess is really the point of Simply Reflecting. Now that I got that out of the way, let’s get into today’s topic.
The other day I was listening to the podcast Confidently She by Rebekah Buege and she was speaking about the advice we’ve all heard or have even given, “Do What Makes You Happy” and it got me thinking. What does it mean to do what makes you happy? Is it even possible to do what makes you happy?
Do What Makes You Happy
What does that even mean? How can you do that when happiness isn’t a constant feeling? Happiness is going to come and it’s going to go many different times through out your life. I believe the intention behind that saying is always one of genuine care for someone, which is why I think people don’t notice how unsustainable it is. Nothing in this world is going to make you happy forever, no matter how much you love it.
Take blogging for example, I love my blog but it does not always bring me happiness. There are times when it brings me a lot of stress, and a lot of confusion and honestly it some times makes me down right anxious. That’s because just like happiness, all those words I just used are emotions. They are always changing minute by minute throughout our life.
In the podcast, the speaker mentioned that happiness is not a sustainable emotion and I completely agree with her. I think as a society we confuse the overarching idea of happiness with the actual emotion of happiness. When someone says they want to be happy they usually mean they want to feel loved, valued, secure, and comfortable. So what can we say instead of “I want to be happy” that combines the feeling of being loved,valued, secure and comfortable?
Do What Makes You Feel Good
Instead of “Do What Makes You Happy” the speaker in the podcast recommended doing what makes you feel GOOD. When you start to think of happiness as what is really is, a single emotion it’s easier to recognize we aren’t chasing happiness. We’re chasing feeling good. The speaker in this podcast isn’t the first one to introduce this idea. However I didn’t view it this way until I listened to this podcast.
The YouTube yoga instructor Adriene Mishler from Yoga with Adriene has a saying “Find What Feels Good” that she uses in all her projects. For a while, I just thought of it in the actual terms of yoga. Find what feels good for my body because I have the flexibility of a wooden board, but now I can see it in a whole new outlook.
Doing what makes you feel good is going to be different for everyone, and a big part of the journey is figuring it out. As the speaker mentions in the episode, this applies to all area’s of life. We all want a life that makes feeling loved, valued, secure and comfortable sustainable and it’s going to take time to figure that out. Sometimes we’re gonna think we found it and then in 20 years realize that we haven’t and that’s okay.
Doing what makes you feel good or “happy” isn’t about not making mistakes or bad decisions. It’s about making those mistakes and making a mental note about them so that you don’t make them in the future. There will be situations in life where you take the easy way out. You’ll quickly realize it doesn’t lead to what you want because anything worth having isn’t easy to obtain. Understandably most people don’t actually like feeling uncomfortable, and choosing that harder route is uncomfortable. However, it’s important that we remember those harder decisions will typically lead to the sustainability we all crave.
Does This Mean Instant Gratification is Bad?
With all this talk about how “happiness” isn’t sustainable, it may come off that I’m saying you shouldn’t search for or take part in things that bring instant gratification. I’m not at all. I actually very much believe in doing things that make you happy in the moment. As long as you have a balance between instant gratification and long term investments, then I see nothing wrong with doing something in the moment.
Everyone is going to have their opinion on what “Doing What Makes you Feel Good” means. However, it’s an objective statement because it’s different for everyone. The biggest factor into “Doing what makes you feel good” is that you are taking care of yourself. True genuine self-care can only be decided by you. It comes in many different forms for different areas of life, and just because your self care doesn’t look like someone else’s does not mean you aren’t taking care of yourself. Whether it’s instant gratification or a long term investment if it serves you in a positive way, it’s considered self-care.
So, what are your thoughts on all of this? What does it mean to “Do What Makes you Happy” in your life? Is it lazy advice or just misunderstood? How do you feel about instant gratification? Let me know all your thoughts down in the comments, I love hearing from you. Thanks for stopping by, until next time..
Be Nice. Be Good.