GUEST POST: HOW TO LIVE A HAPPIER LIFE

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Today’s guest post comes from a fellow UCF student (GO Knights!). Her beautiful writing does a great job of slapping us all in the face when we think about how we can live more in our present and leave the past behind. Want to submit a guest post for TTILF or Bridesmaid for Hire? Email: Jenglantz@gmail.com

It’s as if we’re always chasing something. Chasing the school, the job, the relationship, the next job, the next relationship, the house, the family, the status, the style. Never satisfied. Never enough.

The race isn’t going to stop. It’s okay to slow down every once in a while and enjoy the scenery. To look back at the long road we’ve come down to get to where we are. But we refuse to stop. Rather than give ourselves the time to take stock in our accomplishments, we look past them as we search for the next one. And in a world like today, where we are all showcasing the best parts of our lives all over the Internet, it’s easy to feel like we’re slacking. Like we’re missing something, not trying hard enough, not as happy as everyone else.

And in fear of never being able to keep up, we hide behind a word. A very tiny word that suddenly has gained a lot of clout. Four little letters that get tossed around left and right as an excuse for why we just can’t. Can’t attend the party, can’t meet for lunch, can’t start a family, can’t wash our hair. That word, is Busy.

You see, we are all plagued with chronic busyness. It’s an adverse side effect to the delusion we have that everyone else is doing more than we are. And we don’t compare our own situation to everyone else’s individual situations. We compare our own situation to everyone else’s situation, collectively. As a whole. And our individual efforts stand no chance against what everyone else is doing, all together. Sure, we just got a new job, but she’s traveling the world and he just got married and they just had a baby. We’re not doing any of those things! So in order to feel like we are a part of it,  we wave our busy flag and join the fight so we can keep up with all the other busy bees.

But while we’re all busy being busy, life is passing us by. Relationships aren’t being nourished, families aren’t connecting, bonds aren’t forming. As we’re all arguing over who has the least amount of hours in their day, opportunities for better and fuller lives are being wasted. We’re constantly looking outward to compare our situation to everyone else’s rather than focusing that attention inward. Into our own families. Our own lives. Our own relationships.

The truth is, we all aren’t as happy as we pretend to be on the Internet. For every adorably happy baby there are hours of crying tantrums and exasperation. For every dream job landed there are hundreds of rejection letters. Every “I said yes!” picture carries with it an anxiety of what’s to come.  Life isn’t perfect. For anyone. But in between all those messy and trying moments, there is a glimmer of perfection. It just takes effort to see it. So instead of putting that effort in to the excuses for why we just can’t, lets put that energy into finding those glimmers of perfection. And savoring them. Not taking their picture. Not posting about them. Not chasing them. Let us witness and immerse ourselves in life. Because sometimes,  its pretty perfect.

Lauren knows she’ll never know it all, but she will always want to. She enjoys exploring life through her writing and hopes to offer new perspectives. She lives and loves in Miami, FL. Read more from Lauren on her blog, The Starving Student!

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I’m Jen Glantz. I’ve been a published writer for over 13 years, spilling my words into magazines (ranging from style to scuba diving), newspapers, websites and even this one time, a speech, for someone who didn’t speak a word of English. What drives my words, my site, my writing, is the power of relating to people. I find that many people, especially young girls, feel so alone and quite often they feel embarrassed. I want to shatter those feelings! I want them to read what I write and understand that it’s okay to be a little outside of the box, but most importantly, that it is okay to just be who they are.

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