It wasn’t until I burned out after seven years of practicing law that I gave much thought to my own happiness. If you could give some advice to young women and girls about how to build happiness, what would you say?
Maxing Out Isn’t Healthy
Buy more experiences and less stuff
Focus on self-efficacy rather than self-esteem
Take (good) risks
Don’t get stuck in your own faulty thinking
Perfection really does not exist
Vulnerability is good
Avoid happiness traps
Since we’re all about ladies doin werq today, I thought I’d share this. Obviously, click the link for more.
“Marriage isn’t 50/50, it’s 100/100. When you gave your vows you weren’t giving half of yourself, you were giving your whole self, everything you are. So you don’t give half of yourself, expecting your spouse to meet you halfway. Real love is when you give your whole self, expecting nothing in return. And when two people both show that selfless love, it paints a beautiful picture of what marriage is really about.”—
I was asked recently what I wanted to be different. I didn’t know how to answer and let the closest words fall out of my mouth. Instead of mumbling nothing, I want to say something. I want to be genuine. I want to hug deeply. I want to smile with more than my teeth. I want to laugh from somewhere only I know. I want to cry completely. I want to care with more than my mind. I want to speak with more than my voice. I want to get really angry. I want to love, love, and love some more. I want to forgive with grace. I want to feel when I hurt. I want to connect. I want to be brave. I need to be genuine.
“…If you’re a “nice guy” to a girl up until you realize she doesn’t want to date you, then go on about how she’s a cold shrew that friendzoned you and how no girls date nice guys, then I HATE YOU AND I HOPE YOU GET A POPCORN HULL STUCK UNDER YOUR GUM FLAP.”—
The kind of dreams that wake you up with tears or that have you smiling all day. The kind of dreams that make you feel something and are so beautifully detailed that you almost wish it was real. The kind of dreams that show you faces you’ve never seen before or take you places that you’ve never been before. New homes, warm people, different places…all so surreal but so worth believing in.
But I’m feelin’ no pain I’m a little lonely and my quietest friend Have I the moonlight? Have I let you in? Say it ain’t so, say I’m happy again
Say it’s over, say I’m dreaming, Say I’m better than you left me Say you’re sorry, I can take it Say you’ll wait, say you won’t Say you love me, say you don’t I can make my own mistakes Let it bend before it breaks
I’m all right. Don’t I seem to be? Aren’t I swinging on the stars? Don’t I wear them on my sleeve?
Five minutes too long. Five pages too far. One ultrasound picture too much.
I swear it was an accident…maybe a little masochistic but an accident still. Instantaneous physical reaction was for my eyes to well up with tears but I still felt nothing. I passed my secret test. I’m alright and I’m starting to believe that now.
“It’s dark because you are trying too hard. Lightly child, lightly. Learn to do everything lightly. Yes, feel lightly even though you’re feeling deeply. Just lightly let things happen and lightly cope with them. I was so preposterously serious in those days, such a humorless little prig. Lightly, lightly – it’s the best advice ever given me. When it comes to dying even. Nothing ponderous, or portentous, or emphatic. No rhetoric, no tremolos, no self conscious persona putting on its celebrated imitation of Christ or Little Nell. And of course, no theology, no metaphysics. Just the fact of dying and the fact of the clear light. So throw away your baggage and go forward. There are quicksands all about you, sucking at your feet, trying to suck you down into fear and self-pity and despair. That’s why you must walk so lightly. Lightly my darling, on tiptoes and no luggage, not even a sponge bag, completely unencumbered.”—Aldous Huxley, Island (via moreofamore)
I believe someday you’ll know that in your heart. I think years from now you’ll look back at this time of your life and you’ll see that this was your growing up. One of the hardest things about doing that—I mean, really, truly, actually growing up—is that in order to do so we must come to terms with the past. And for a lot of us who didn’t get as kids what we needed to get from the people who were supposed to give it to us, we can’t really grow up until we find a way to give what we need to ourselves.
But that’s also one of the most beautiful things. Because we can. We have the power to heal what needs to be healed. We get to give ourselves that. We have the capacity to stand before the scorching flames and decide what to swallow and what to cast out. That’s where you are, Ashamed and Afraid. You have arrived at the fire. Here’s the bread. Grab a hunk.