Why are you not happy?

Every day, going to work, on my 10 minutes walk to the subway station I’m crossing a little alley between two small buildings in my neighborhood. It’s a narrow path, there can only be two people at the same time there. I passed this alley every day, ever since I moved in the area, one and a half years ago.

I saw it in the winter time when everything was covered in snow. I enjoyed the gorgeous spring blooming trees appearing after the long winter. I saw it in the summer days, all green with the trees full of leaves, barely being able to walk beside them.

But today I saw it in the autumn. A fogy, cold autumn day. And it was truly magical for me. Every leave was yellow. Everything was yellow. It was beautiful. It made me smile, it made me happy.

Whatever would have happened today I had at least one reason to be happy. And so do you.

Even though I don’t always manage to do so, I sure try to enjoy little things in life. Taking a deep breath in the park, enjoying the Christmas lights decorating the city, watching genuinely happy children playing with their toys.

There are a million reasons for us to be happy every day, every moment. Let’s just all choose to be happy, it’s all it takes.

My happiness reason 🙂

 

 

 

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The best version of you

From the first grade to my latest years in high school I can definitely say I was one of the best students in my class. I truly worked hard for that, but I just did it, because I genuinely liked studying and in general I always thought that education was my only chance to have access to all the things I dreamed about growing up. And by that, I don’t mean expensive items or experiences, but just things I missed out growing up because my parents couldn’t afford to provide for me and my brother. ( If you want to read more about this, you can read my post Don’t wish to be rich. ) So, I worked hard and always got the first or second best grades in my class. At the beginning, I didn’t really feel any pressure regarding this matter. I just did what I had to do. Maybe in part, that’s also because I tend to be a very compliant and quiet person. I don’t really like to be against the system, so to say. But that’s another story.

With time I started to slowly realize some kind of pressure. From my father, the teachers, my colleagues and most important of all from me. Once I had the reputation of the “smart one” everybody was expecting me to do well on everything. If I got a relatively bad grade, something was wrong. If one of the other students got a bad grade, it was nothing.

I managed to work my way past this fairly easily. That until 6 years ago when I moved to Bucharest to go to college. And I had a total shock. Between all the big changes in my life, like leaving home for the first time, living in a college dorm with 3 new girls, taking care of myself and all that, something else radically changed then. I was not the “smart one” anymore. Actually, at the beginning, I was really bad at school. It sure was related to all the changes passing on in my life, but there something else there too. I just wasn’t the smartest one, I just couldn’t surpass one of my colleagues. No matter how hard I tried, some of them were better than me at school. That realization really shuttered my life at the time. I felt so bad, I couldn’t understand what’s happening and blamed myself for not beeing good enough.

You are YOU.

Stop comparing yourself to others. Work on becoming the best version of you.

Don’t wish to be rich

Growing up, my parents didn’t have much to offer to me and my brother. Don’t get me wrong, we had all necessary things like food, decent clothes and toys and even a vacation or little presents once in a while. I could basically say I wasn’t the poorest kid in my class, and definitely not the richest.

This is why going to school was particularly hard for me sometimes. I clearly remember one time of the year I wasn’t expecting impatiently. The week after Christmas was a “nightmare” for me. It was the time when all the kids at school gathered around and shared stories about what they received for Christmas. For those who don’t know, in my country at least, in the holiday season, there are two traditions. Kids usually receive candy and fruits on December 6 from a so-called saint Nicholas, and on December 25, gifts ( usually toys )  from Santa Claus. And because my parents didn’t afford all the necessary money for both holidays, they only gave us candy and fruits on December 6. But all the kids got that. They weren’t even mentioning that to the other kids, as it wasn’t as fun as the gifts part from Santa Claus. They were talking only about what Santa got them.

I didn’t get anything.

To not look like a fool in front of the other kids, I always had to come up with a lie that day. I was really nervous that the other kids could find out I didn’t get anything. Even though it may sound silly it was my worst nightmare at that time as a kid.

I remember one year, going with my mom shopping for food, I fell in love with a plush toy, a husky dog ( I still have it ). I wanted it so bad, I stayed with my mom there for 20 minutes I think to try to convince her to buy it for me. I promised I wouldn’t ask for anything ever. She was so nice, and eventually got it for me, even though it truly was a financial effort for her. I was so happy that day, I can’t describe it in words. One of the best days of my entire life. If you could imagine, 25 years and one of my best memories is getting a plush husky dog ( that probably cost like $10 or something ).

Of course, I had many moments when I was upset or angry, asking why. Why I couldn’t have what other kids did? Why didn’t my parent gave me more?

I knew since then, part of the answer. They didn’t give me more because they didn’t have more. They were heartbroken knowing that they are not able to give us everything. Because every parent wants to see their child happy. But what they didn’t know, and what I recently learned, was that this was actually a blessing.

Not having everything was one of the greatest things that could ever happen to me, and I am now very grateful for that.

Because this was my biggest motivation in life. I always had something to dream about, a goal to achieve and most important, a reason to be happy and healthy. Not having everything I wanted, made me want to study more, made me want to be financially independent, made me want to do great things in life, to be able to make all my dreams come true and also be able to take care of my parents.

Don’t wish to be rich, wish to always have a motivation to grow and develop and just be happy.

But what if

I would like to become a model. But what if my beauty will be gone before I manage to become a renowned model?

I always wanted to teach. It was my childhood dream, to be surrounded by children and be able to leave my mark on the world. I started thinking seriously about this when I entered college, but one day, it hit me. All good, but what if I will earn so little money, that I would never be able to have a house, that I would never be independent, that I would never afford to have my own child.

My biggest dream is to become an astronaut, to explore the space and be known as the first man traveling to another solar system, heck… I wouldn’t mind going to another galaxy too, finding extraterrestrial life. It would be so cool… But wait a moment, what if when I’ll be ready to do it, we’ll not yet have the technology to leave our galaxy, or even worst, what if I will not be able to pass all the physical, psychological and knowledge tests to even became an astronaut. What will happen to me, after I’ve spent all that time, money and energy in planning and studying to become an astronaut?

Then I gave up…

I think many people can relate to one of those scenarios at some point in their life. That moment, when you realize, by yourself, or “with help” from somebody else, that you have to make a decision. A decision for your future.

That’s when the fear is coming into your life. The fear of failure, the fear of not making enough money, the fear of not reaching your full potential. But you can’t get away this fear, at least not so easily. No matter what you do, there will always be an what if. No matter what you choose, no matter how good that idea might be, no matter who is telling you what to do, what if will always be there to “haunt you”. If you let it haunt you, of course.

And don’t get fooled, this can also happen if you decide to not follow your heart.

For example, let’s say you are passionate about arts, and all you ever dreamed of is becoming a writer or a painter but you let yourself down by the fear. You realize that there is a good chance you don’t become famous, don’t make enough money, and end up ruining your life. So, you decide to do something well paid, for a better, safer future, a developer for example.  But what if, at some point, you will be intellectual exceeded, or loose your sight or something else bad happens. There are so many cases, possibilities.

You can do bad in every way. But, the most important thing, you can also do better in every way.

You just need to choose something that fills your heart with happiness, or at least fills one tiny part of it.  Don’t get me wrong, money are important, you need them to survive, to have a decent life, but you also need to make sure you have the time to spend it, what to do with them and someone to whom you’ll spend your joys and sadness at the end of the day.

Make a decision that will make you happy now.