Happy mound-day, Everypeeps! I’m not a fan of the term ‘hump,’ so I like to treat Wednesdays like a small hill–a mound, if you will.

Given some folks’ tendency toward the mid-week blues, I’d thought I’d take a moment to talk about being sad. I’ve noticed a little trend on ye olde internets lately – Facebookland and the Twitterplaceface – a tendency for people to be a little down in the dumps.

Now, take this post with a grain of salt, so to speak (what does that even mean?)… I understand that everyone’s situation isn’t the same, and this isn’t meant to be a one-size-fits-all social commentary. We all have bad days from time to time, but there seem to be a quite a few folks who are having pretty crap-tastic days kind of constantly.

Apparently this particular optimism expired on 7/31/10. Photo credit to _Fidelio_ (Flickr).

And we’re not talking about a surge of spectacularly bad luck; we’re talking a 98% negative post ratio – an almost constantbarrage of sad, sad, pessimistish, every-day’s-a-poop-fest, woe-is-me posts from certain individuals who shall remain nameless.

Okay, I’m trying to avoid a holier-than-thou, high and mighty, asshole judgmental tone here, but I’d totally understand if that’s the vibe you’re getting. My first draft of this post ended up conveying a message that sounded a lot like, “cheer up, assholes!” But that’s not at all what I’m trying to say, and more importantly, that’s not really how I feel.

I’ll admit it’s frustrating to see a constant flood of posts that start to seem analogous to the story of ‘The Boy Who Cried Wolf.’ But when every day is ‘the worst day ever,’ I think there’s probably more to things than the events of that particular day. It’s hard to have a good day when you feel badly about yourself.

Now, I’m not pointing fingers, but that’s been my experience.

I think most people would label me an optimist – I would myself – but I haven’t always been able to see the ‘bright side’ of things. I understand what it’s like to have a seemingly endless supply of bad days, and bad occurrences… but I’ve discovered that days and occurrences are often entirely dependent on your perspective, and your attitude.

As I once said in a speech I delivered in 6th grade, “The words of Charles Swindoll say it all:

‘The longer I live, the more I realize the impact of attitude on life.

Attitude, to me, is more important than facts. It is more important than the past, than education, than money, than circumstances, than failures, than successes, than what other people think or say or do. It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill. It will make or break a company… a church… a home.

The remarkable thing is we have a choice every day regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past… we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude… I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it.

And so it is with you… we are in charge of our attitudes.'” – Charles Swindoll

I understand it’s not just a matter of deciding to have a more positive attitude (or perhaps it is for some–it wasn’t for me), and I could write indefinitely about the changes I had to make in my life in order to allow myself to have a more positive attitude (therapy, a change in friends, joining supportive communities, changing my major, returning to college, etc.), but my story isn’t yours.

I just want you to know that you can do it. You can be happy. We can be happy.

It might take some hard decisions; it might take tremendous effort – but I believe it can be done, and it really can start with attitude. I think happiness is contagious. Laugher is the best medicine and all that. But I think sad and dour can catch on just as easily as chipper and upbeat.

Let’s be happy together. I’ll buy you a drink, and we can talk about how great life is.

And then we can pass it on.

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