Yesterday, I had a delightful afternoon with a much loved friend. My happiness needs a workout, and everyone needs a workout buddy, right?! Wednesday’s, for now, are being dedicated to “workin’ it out.” Mostly because of the alliteration, but also because working on yourself is important to whole being happiness. You cannot achieve balance if you do not work on your personal development at work and your physical and mental health. During our conversation, which ranged from Game of Thrones to self-image, she introduced me to the theory of Authentic Happiness and Positive psychology as a practice.
As I have written and erased this exact paragraph at least ten times, I realized I have waaaay too little information to begin spouting about to you all. I can, however, send you to one of the web sites I am perusing to make sense of this new theory. Here you will find a bunch of articles and surveys to help you scale yourself in a variety of topics relating to happiness.
This is not the first time in my life I have suffered from depression and maybe not the last. This country has spoken (not nearly enough) recently about mental illness. This is still a hush-hush topic. We generally don’t have much of a plan for it, we don’t talk about it, and we certainly don’t make it easy for people to get help. Every time I try to see my therapist, I have to go through some long phone shenanigans with my insurance provider, fill out some survey to assess how “messed-up” I might be (is this a “one visit” level of crazy or will there be multiple sessions to handle this one), wait for approval, blah, blah, blerg. How is anyone expected to fill out that survey in the first place? How is this going to come back and bite me? Should I even be posting about this right now?
Depression, as a disorder, seems to evoke responses from people somewhere from, “Who isn’t?” and “There are meds. for that.” I don’t know many people who take it seriously– It is a private thing that happens to individuals. That person needs to handle it quickly, quietly, and move on. — Easier said than done.
What if depression was treated from a stand point of positives–starting with the strengths the person has instead of the deficits? This, I think, is where positive psychotherapy is coming from. Read an overview.
Needless to say, I owe it to myself to clear away some of the cobwebs so I can start focusing again. I will. I’m writing this to get you to think of your happiness fitness. Do you need a great friend to help you put things in perspective or is it something more? Can you look at all the wonderful things you have around you, recognize them for their wonderfulness, but still feel a deep emptiness or sadness? Maybe it is time to go through the shenanigans of a phone call to speak to someone. If you don’t have a therapist who seems to fit you, or a doctor you can wholeheartedly trust, might I recommend looking into someone who treats from a positive perspective? Find someone who can not only treat the areas you might be lacking, but can help you focus on your strengths. There is a lot to say for feeling fullness.
P.S. Seriously, I’m hugging you. Give a hug today if you can, but always receive a hug when it is given. Read about this hugging project here.