Happiness is elusive; a friend once told me. Happiness is appreciating the little things in life; another friend countered her. That is when I realized that each person defines cheerfulness differently.
To experience happiness is essential because life is short. All that you have is now, and you must endeavor to be happy. My happinesswake-up call came at a time when life was meaningless. I had no direction in life.
Being unhappy while you cannot recognize it may require you to snap out of it. You may have to make a switch to safeguard your happiness. How did I find myself in this state of unhappiness, and how did I get myself out? Let me share my experience.
Incidences That Happened Before My Wake- Up Call
I was in my early twenties. It was a time when I had graduated from the University. I can describe this period as being a young adult. A young adult experiences several challenges.
Some of the challenges include lack of employment opportunities, identity crisis, and pressure of materialism. The influence of materialism was the cause of my unhappiness.
Having graduated, I had all the expectations of landing a well-paying job. I had plans that in my head, I would execute to the last “T.” The original idea was getting that well-paying job, renting an apartment, and having my much-needed independence.
However, after being unable to get my dream job, things were not going as planned. I did not have my place and could not meet my basic needs. I was unhappy since I was struggling. To make matters worse, I could view my former campus mates living the best life there was.
You could ask, how did I know about this? Social media laid it all bare for me. I could see these former school mates post lavish photos. These included photos of them eating out in high- end restaurants and riding luxurious cars. Some even went on to pose in pools of cash.
The Impact and Final Straw
I began to compare my life to my friends. Because of this, my self-esteem hit rock bottom; I withdrew from friends and family and became grumpy. I would lash out to my perceived offender, and this should have been a wake-up call.
Due to the lack of self-worth, I became depressed and miserable. I exhibited the various signs of depression, yet I was unaware that I was undergoing depression. Being unhappy does not necessarily mean that you are depressed; however, unhappiness can lead to depression.
During this time, I lost several jobs; this should have been another wake-up call. At this point, I was living alone in a tiny room, wallowing in my misery.
Then one cloudy Friday evening, I fell sick and started feeling dizzy, nauseous, sweating profusely. The pain I was feeling was excruciating. Unable to move, I collapsed.
I stayed in this manner for thirty-six hours and lost consciousness at one point. When I finally regained myself back, the pain had subsided. Then the major wake- up call dawn when I realized that I could have passed away without any help forthcoming.
During the agonizing thirty- six hours, no person checked on me neither did my phone ring. The reason being I had pushed away both family and friends. There and then I knew I had to change.
After the wake- up call experience, I shared with a random colleague what had happened. She pointed out that I could be depressed and that I needed help. I managed to seek counseling.
I deliberately made an effort to be cheerful. Understand that if you cannot find happiness from within, neither can you obtain it from others. I researched and read on ways to be happy such as 10 Mindsets of happy people. In addition to this, I took a few breaks from social media.
Make an effort to look at the bright side of every situation; otherwise, you may have a rude wake-up call. I may not have landed my ideal job; however, I still had jobs that helped me sustain myself daily. That is, I started looking at the silver lining in every cloud.
My advice to any person undergoing a similar experience is that happiness is a product of positive thinking and action.
Do not wait for a wake-up call for you to embrace happiness. Be appreciative of the little things in life. Nurture unique relationships with family and friends. Invest in positive relationships that will build you.
Seek help by talking to trusted people. Do not bottle up emotions such as anger. Healthily express these emotions by doing activities you love, such as drawing and painting.
And finally, enjoy the phase that you are experiencing. I was busy wanting to live like my friends. Trust the process; my life finally started moving towards how I envisioned it.