At the dim light of my Ikea lamp I experience an unusual moment of light-heartedness. I smile at my bruises and pains and tease myself with tag names like “Negative Nancy.” I am sure you have all thought this either by meeting me in person or by reading this blog. You’ve thought I am sad, unhappy, sick, insecure and uneager to get any better. Well, you are partly right and partly wrong.
I am all of the above, just like you and everybody else I have ever met. I just happen to acknowledge it a lot more often in an exercise of self-awareness and ultimately a weird sort of confidence. I would encourage you to try it out. Bringing out the sorest points in you forces you to address them as opposed to indeterminately shoving them under the carpet of day-by-day life.
And here’s the most interest thing I found out about myself by exploring the darker corners of the labyrinth. I found out that happiness, as most of us define and understand it, is not what I am looking for. Happiness doesn’t stimulate me nor does it make me want to wake up in the morning. Happiness feels stagnant and soothing to those who look for no progress (or some type of iterative and controlled progress). When I feel happy, I do not feel like writing, climbing, running, building, revolutionizing, discovering. I simply feel happy. At most I watch a movie.
If you disagree with the details of the above, think about the bigger picture. Think about it, really think about it: who of the greatest game-changers have been “happy people?” Now think about the changes in your life, the types of changes that have made you HAPPIER – did they come from a state of happiness or…quite the opposite?
My theory is that great ambitions come from great insecurities, bruises, scars, sore muscles and so on. My theory is that human beings stop evolving when environments become comfortable and start adapting when environments become challenging and even harsh.
I choose to explore my dark corners because not only do I believe they are a big part of my daily inner impetus for greatness but also because understanding them and learning how to control them is the key to never-ending and sustainable personal progress. I’d venture to apply a similar logic to the world at large and its evolution or lack thereof in different historical times.
So please know that my illnesses and tears and acknowledged insecurities are part of my type of self-advancement. And that there’s nothing wrong with that, quite the opposite. I would say that I do not mean to bring you down with my rants…but that’s probably a lie. Because given all the above, if you’re the type of person who is bothered by my type of writing, it’s probably exactly what you need.
But for now, I’ll save this moment of elusive happiness. It feels similar to consuming a light drug I used to be addicted to. High & dry.