“Are you happy?” A friend asked me a couple of months ago.

“Yes, of course.” I answered without a second thought. Things were up-in-the-air at the time, and I was struggling with this and that, but I was enjoying all of that. For sure I was happy.

I returned the question, “Are you happy?” and was shocked to hear her answer: “NO.” She went on to explain that she will be happy “one day” but right now, because of this reason and that reason, overall she wasn’t really very happy.

I guess it’s all that “live in the ‘now’, because the ‘now’ is all we ever have” – the ‘present’ is a present, a gift, so we should enjoy it – type of Eckhart Tolle / Deepak Choprah books I’ve read or audio books I’ve listened to, this is so engrained in my head that my daily decisions, big and small, are guided by it.

While I have my moments of frustration and the occasional days I think of as mini episodes of depression, I can’t imagine being in an state of unhappiness for a long period of time. If I’m not happy, I blame only myself for letting myself get to wherever I have gotten. Then I figure out what I need to change, and I change it, true to the flowchart above.

Is this selfish? I don’t think so. The happier I am, the happier the people around me will be. No one likes a wet rag, or a person full of regret and gloom. It’s that over-flowing wine glass analogy again – keep filling up your own and it will flow into others glasses too. I struggle to imagine another way of life.

I guess I knew that not everyone lives this way. The thing is, when you are always inside your own head, it’s easy to forget that not everyone approaches life in the same way you do.

My friend’s answer snapped me back into the wider reality: not everyone is happy.

I have to wonder: if you are not happy, why don’t you change?


I came across this picture on a friend’s facebook feed. It has the name of the creator on it although I can’t make out what it says.