It’s funny, but sometimes you don’t realize how unhappy you are with something/someone until you remove it/them from your life. Like what? A job, friends, significant others, weight, substance abuse, other bad habits, where you live, belongings, etc.
There have been quite a few times in my life when A. I was really unhappy but was in denial about the unhappiness and B. finally admitted to myself that I was unhappy but stayed in the unhappiness for way too long.
The most recent was a job, the most difficult was a long-term relationship, and there are countless examples in between. For the bigger life picture circumstances (where I lived, where I worked, who I was surrounding myself with), I tend to go through the same behavioral pattern where I try to convince myself that I’m happy. I blame the unhappiness on everything else but the actual problem, make excuses, rationalize, try to find the positive, hold onto the good moments and keep hoping for change.
The truth is, as Albert Einstein so famously said, “insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” I usually cross the happiness-unhappiness threshold when I’m starting to really compromise my sanity, my life.
Having made a recent change that exponentially impacted my happiness, something I knew I should have done a really long time ago, I’m working on being much more mindful of recognizing when someone/something is truly effecting my happiness. And once identified, not letting it linger for more than it needs to by taking action and making a change. Especially situations in which I take on the unhappiness out of fear of letting down others.
Anywayyy, I wanted to talk about this here because I know I’m not alone when it come to unhappiness denial and staying in the unhappiness-for-too-long camp. Even though being unhappy sounds obvious, sometimes accepting it is really hard and making the change is even harder. Here’s a list to keep in mind if you’re struggling with happiness in different areas of your life:
Some signs of unhappiness:
Trying to convince yourself that you’re happy with something/someone
Trying to convince others that you’re happy with something/someone
Feel anxious everyday about something/someone
Dreaming/thinking about the future without someone/something in it
Complaining about something/someone often
Projecting unhappiness on everything but the actual problem (ex: you hate your job but blame the commute, surrounding lunch options, room temperature)
Feel hopeless, defeated, disappointed in yourself or depressed
Have physical symptoms like fatigue, weight gain or loss, acne, etc.
Numb the unhappiness with food, alcohol, drugs, sex, television, or excessive busyness
Seeing changes in your personality and confidence
Does anyone else struggle with identifying unhappiness and making a change?