Why Can’t I Just Be Happy?!?
Why can’t I just be happy was written to reach out to anyone and everyone who is looking for encouragement and how to come back to themselves and be the happy, positive and productive person they were in the past.
Why can’t I be happy is a familiar cry from many in the world today. We all want to experience joy again. If you’re suffering from acute depression, anxiety, or perhaps being a new mother experiencing the baby blues, or who are in the throes of post-partum depression, we all just want to be happy again.
Are you tired of being sad? Perhaps you don’t even know why you’re sad. This post is for you! Get back to your ‘happy place’. This post is meant for you!
“Why can’t I just be happy?” Wouldn’t it be nice if we could just go back in time and experience that one childhood moment when we experienced happiness as a state of being — of feeling inexplicable joy?
That one incredible moment when everything in our world was perfect, inside and out. Why can’t I just be this happy again!
In this article Made You Smile Back is going to discuss various reasons as to why we feel this way from time to time. We will also look at innovative ways we can overcome this temporary ‘state of being’ and find our happiness again.
Why You’re Not Happy
Have you caught yourself thinking that all the things that used to make you happy aren’t making you happy any longer? Sometimes the reason you can’t be happy is not that complicated.
All one has to do is just step out of yourself for a moment and ask your psyche why you’re so unhappy. You may be in a difficult situation and you see no way out.
Or things that once brought you joy, have lost their sparkle. This isn’t your fault. You may be stuck in an emotional rut.
You know you want to be happy. You wouldn’t be reaching out if you didn’t. And there my friend lies the power that is truly within you to change things around!
If you set your sights on all the right targets and/or goals and get your priorities straight, you can become happy again.
You’re stronger than you realize and you have the power within you to choose to do whatever it takes to Make You Smile Again.
You’re Not Alone…
For myself, I strive to spend the majority of my day smiling at others with the intent of making those I meet feel good about themselves. I even read somewhere that even with the act of smiling itself, it does seem to help. Something about the feel-good neurotransmitters being released. But I digress.
Here’s the deal. Maybe your unhappiness is a type of depression. Would it surprise you to know that depression is a medical condition and is considered a genuine illness, just like the flu?
Did you know that depression comes in many forms, whether it be clinical depression, bi-polar, postpartum or even a relatively new one recently identified – smile depression. Yes, you read correctly, smile depression and while I have firsthand experienced some of the others mentioned above as well, I can honestly tell you, smile depression is now a big concern of mine!
Are you hiding behind a ‘forced’ smile?
Think about it. Usually, when you think of someone suffering from depression, they are friends who are noticeably sad and perhaps disengaged from their loved ones and everyday life. Possibly you can relate to this.
You, on the other hand, smile all day long — at work, playing with your kids and/or grandkids, with your spouse and when greeting others at the cashier’s line in the grocery store. You laugh, you smile, and you may ‘look’ happy. Yet you can’t seem to shake off the feelings of loneliness and sadness that are buried deep below your surface
Do YOU Have Smile Depression?
According to Thai-An Truong, a mental health therapist at Oklahoma’s Lasting Change Therapy, this is smiling depression, also known as perfectly hidden depression. Symptoms include similar to those of depression: low mood, sadness, low self-worth, isolation and hopelessness. Is this you?
Do you “put on a happy face in front of others“, hiding your vulnerability and even using laughter as a means to disguise your pain? Don’t deny it any longer if you suffer or know someone who does.
It’s this very reason that people, especially women, with smiling depression who look put-together on the outside avoid getting help. You may feel like ‘oh this too will pass’ and isn’t bad enough to warrant reaching out to get help or see a mental health professional.
Reaching Out for Help
The good news is that help is actually closer than you think. The first step is to get yourself out of denial. Acknowledge that what you’re feeling is “real”. Next, talk to someone you trust. It can be a family member, someone you work with, a fellow church member or your primary care physician. Let them know what’s going on.
And listen carefully, “If they discount your feelings, find SOMEONE ELSE. You must be your own self-advocate.”
Sure eating a better diet and getting daily exercise can obviously help too. But you know what. So does therapy.
And please, if you know of a friend or a family member who seems to have it all turns to you for comfort, please don’t dismiss them. Don’t tell them to be grateful for what they have.
Instead, let that person know that you’re there to listen and support them. This goes for everyone suffering any type of depression.
Use Social Media to Reach Out Too!
With the modern technology of today, there’s not a better time than to take advantage of using social media! You know and I know, we all like to hear that familiar ding’ announcing to us to let us know someone is sending a message. Call, text, Facebook, or even email your friend(s) and engage with them in meaningful conversation! And yes, don’t forget to address them by their name. This is important, people feel ‘special’ when you call them by their name.
For some people, messaging via social media actually allows you to ‘open up’ more than you would have if in person. Not everyone, but for those who are somewhat introverted, this is an excellent option to help you who may need this type of engagement to connect and have meaningful dialogue.
And remember, you know you’re getting thru once you see that all too familiar smiley face icon! 😊
5 Ways To Get Back to Happy!
By learning these five simple steps, you will help get your smile to resurface by putting YOU first. You will see how easy it is to love yourself back to being able to smile again.
Once you have master these five simple steps, the benefits will help you achieve better overall well-being and greater happiness. So, grab a pencil (okay, maybe your iPad…), take notes and let’s begin, shall we?
- You must live in the present. Stop replaying negative events over and over again in your head. And don’t worry about the future. It hasn’t even arrived yet… Learn to be grateful for everything good in your life. Accept and celebrate the flexibility of nature. Be open to the serendipity nature of the ebbs and flow of everything around you and appreciate the “small stuff”. And finally, take a step back and observe yourself in the moment. Instead of always ‘reacting’ to whatever you’re confronting, ‘respond’ and learn how to approach life in a harmonious way.
- Let go of negative thoughts. You must learn to forgive and forget and simply move on. Holding a grudge takes so much emotional and physical energy. It’s not worth it. Forgiveness allows YOU to exchange that negative energy into something more positive for yourself. It’s ‘freeing’. Embrace failures or mistakes and allow yourself to open up to success. Realize just how unique and special you truly are. Try to spend less time pleasing others and more time pleasing your higher self. Remove ‘toxic’ people from your life and hang out with like-minded, positive-oriented friends and family members.
- Be kind. Another way of finding happiness to get your smile back is to simply follow the golden rule: “Do unto others as you would have them do to you”. How about doing a random act of kindness. Go out of your way to help someone. You have no idea how much happiness and self-worth you can gain. It can be as easy as giving a bottle of water to a homeless person or paying a simple compliment to anyone you come in contact with. Even if it’s a total stranger. Kindness is also about being respectful to others. Sometimes its just better to let the other person be right once in a while. And when you do this simple action, you will SMILE back inside of yourself and immediately feel humbled and blessed for doing so.
- Get healthy and get an active lifestyle. I know you’ve heard it said many times, but it is true. Exercise really does make you feel better. It releases those wonderful endorphins which in turn helps you to relieve stress, minimize depression and improve your mood. You can’t help but be happier after a great workout that makes you sweat. Make a conscious effort to eat healthy. You know what I’m talking about. Keep it clean and be sure to drink as much water as necessary to stay hydrated. And finally, take some time ‘off’ from being on your cell phone and checking Facebook or whatever every other minute! Don’t be distracted all of the time. Stay focused, pray, meditate, do yoga, anything that helps you reflect and makes you feel better for your sense of well-being.
- Laugh more and you will smile more. You’ve heard it before but I’m going to remind you anyway. Laughter IS the best medicine. It too releases those feel-good endorphins. When is the last time you had a really good laugh? I’m talking a deep down ‘belly laugh’! If you haven’t seen the YouTube version of the delightful ‘Chewbacca Lady‘, here’s your chance now to not only see it but really get into it and have yourself a ‘belly laugh’ as well. You’ll be grinning from ear to ear with the biggest smile ever. You’ll thank me later, trust me!
Don’t let your sadness rob you of the true joys of life. You deserve to have your ‘inside’ match what you show on the outside. And one of the goals of creating ‘Made You Smile Back’ is to have a place to go to talk about things of this matter and to leave with a ‘smile’, a genuine ‘smile back’.
It’s Your Turn, Please Join In The Conversation!
Please leave your comments below.