Too often, and for too many of us, happiness is just a distant image. A model of the world that we’ve been tought it’s like this, and not the other way around. A to-do list established by somebody else. A ready-made coat that we wear and try to feel comfortable in it. Or a feed we subscribed to, read all the posts, and then convinced ourselves that we wrote that. It’s like claiming somebody else’s blog.
We are just continuously procrastinating in front of the flat-panel, liquid-crystal, super-bright display of our life, relentlessly summoning the “happiness widget” to be included in our side-bar. But it never happens. It’s always something in the way. The connection may be aborted, we might get a “404 Not Found” page, or the happiness site was just been through a massive defacement. It looks like everything is against us.
But the real reason is not that. Those are just excuses we pull from our unconscious part of the brain, assemble them into a wonderful internal drama, and then play it both as a comedian and spectator, with the only real goal of delaying our happiness. Because, in fact, we are not ready to be happy.
Being ready for something, not only happiness, is surprisingly difficult. Being ready for a meeting. For starting your day. For hanging out with friends (well, that might be easier, I accept)… Being ready for marriage, for having children. Being ready for making real money. Being ready for quitting your job for a better one. It’s tough…
I often thought that there is a thin little layer on top of our personality, a small shell that is in charge of all our decisions. The real you, your kernel, is deep down, but it only sees tho world though this shell. And this shell, well, it’s not so smart. It’s agile, I admit, it can adapt your kernel to a lot of new interfaces, but it’s also extremely… shallow.
Your kernel knows everything that needs to be done in order to be happy. It just does. This is the way it has been programmed and it will try all your life to remind you that. But all you have to work with, it’s your shell. And your shell will never be as clever, nor as personal as your kernel is. All it does, your shell, is to correctly connect you to the outside universe. But not to your inner world.
This is where the bug is. You think you are your shell, not your kernel. You think you are a collection of rules, beliefs and standards, but in fact, those are external to your kernel. Those are just protocols. They are ways to communicate, to interact. They are not you. In our rush to “get the most out of our lives” we just forgot that we are completely different than the protocols we use. We channel all of our energy and focus toward the external interfaces of our machine, and take out from our own kernel more and more processor cycles.
And, in the end, we just find ourselves in the position of not being ready for our own happiness.
Running For My Life - from zero to ultramarathoner
The spooky thing about depression is that it sneaks in. There aren’t really trumpets and loud voices announcing: “Hail, hail, this is depression entering the room, all rise!” Nope. It’s slow, silent, creepy. It doesn’t even look like depression. It starts with small isolation thoughts like: “Maybe I shouldn’t get out today, I just don’t feel like going out”. And then it does the same next day. And then the day after that and so on. And then it starts to whisper louder and louder in your ears: “Why would you go outside, you loser? Didn’t have enough yet? Want more people to make fun of how much of a big, fat loser you are?”
And then you start to breath in guilt and shame, instead of air. Every breathe you take is putting more dark thoughts into your body.
Until you get stuck. You can’t move anymore. At all.
If you want to know how I got out of this space, eventually, check out my latest book on Amazon and Kindle.