I am hashtag over it (#overit)! I am totes-my-goats, highest-mountain-and-deepest-sea OVER people not being happy for others (and throwing themselves a pity party instead). It frustrates and angers me that large parts of society see other people’s success, happiness, joy and triumphs as some sort of arrow pointing to the “ME” … “What about me?” – Yes, what about you!
Sour Puss Face and Heart Syndrome
There is nothing fouler than a person’s face souring at someone announcing an engagement, or that they got a new job, a promotion, are pregnant… whatever the scenario. Heck, if most of the people in society pulled a face when something good happened to someone other than themselves – we’d all look like grumpy cat 24/7 (some of us do #justsaying).
Other people’s success doesn’t point to some failure on our part. It’s just a happy moment for them and we should CELEBRATE with them.
There is a piece of advice written by a wise king long ago: “To everything there is a season, A time for every purpose…a time to laugh; A time to mourn, And a time to dance; A time to cast away stones, And a time to gather stones; A time to embrace, And a time to refrain from embracing; A time to gain, And a time to lose …”
We are all in different seasons/stages in our lives, with different events happening. Sometimes it is your turn to be in the audience – sometimes it is your turn on stage or in the wings. If we can just stay clear of the “what about me” thoughts and moments, we could have a society that is always celebrating, even during hardships.
Potato and French-Fry Hearts
Now, I know it isn’t easy wanting something with your full sparkle heart and then Sally-Sue next to you, gets your wish … your heart’s desires. In the meanwhile, you are trying to revive the potato in your stomach that used to be your beating heart; because you are so disappointed it isn’t you. But, you should smack the potato in place within ten seconds, take a decision to be happy for the person and actively show it – through some action – a congratulatory card, kind words, a blessing, a small gift. Take the decision to celebrate with others.
It has been on my wish list to get married and have kids for years now. I must admit I didn’t always have the best reasons for this and I am thankful to be single (as the more I grow before I get married, the less sparkle baggage I drag into it). But this has been, let’s call it – a sparkle thought for a while now. At the start of my single-hood, every engagement and every time someone announced they were pregnant meant that my heart-potato sank to below my knees. I would look at the person and think why THEM – they deserve it less than me (excuse the pride).
But eventually, I decided I was being horrible to think of myself and not be thrilled for others. So, I would practice, the simple step above – I would hug, congratulate and sometimes gift the person and make them feel special. Some people will call this fake. No! I would act in the right way and eventually my French-fry-heart would catch up. The more I did this, the less it “devastated” me to hear similar news and now I truly can say I celebrate with others. No French-fry-heart!
When Roles Reverse …
The thing is, I have experienced the other end… when I have received something – a breakthrough moment. I could see that when I shared the news with some people, they were not happy for me. I could see their faces scrunch up like a piece of used toilet paper; they give you a look of someone that has just chugged-back a shot of vinegar, Absinthe or Stroh Rum – and I still remember the passive-aggressive mean jibes. And I felt guilty for receiving a blessing …
And when I experienced that I realised – I NEVER WANT SOMEONE TO FEEL THAT WAY IN MY PRESENCE. I am not perfect and large chances are that there are people reading this blog that may have experienced my sour puss face and for that – I am truly sorry – I am working on it.
The Best Things in Life are Free …
The best thing people in society can do is be aware of their emotions – introspection doesn’t cost money and blaming others for your unhappiness is about as useful as dieting by watching others eat healthy food.
Be aware of your trigger and sore points … and actively combat the green envy/jealousy arrows that try to poison your soul. And this way you are at least prepped when the time comes for you to hear or see your dream job/wedding/baby/whatever on someone else’s news feed, status or what have you. We need to prepare our hearts and back it up with actions.
In my own life and I know this as a fact of life, if you celebrate with others, you often receive the thing you so desperately want to receive; or at least you receive some form of amazing blessing. Because when you give – you actually receive. And when you receive, you will at least have one or two people celebrating with you; because you celebrated with them.
And yes, as hard as it is celebrating with people – who didn’t, don’t or wouldn’t celebrate with you – CELEBRATE with them anyway. These people need it most because it is impossible to be happy if you are selfish, self-absorbed and all about the me. And thus, they need extra faff and attention – even if in your mind they don’t deserve it. I am not advocating keeping toxic people in your life but extend them grace – even if it is just a thoughtful post on Social Media.
Random Acts of Kindness
The world needs more random acts of kindness. Someone paying for a stranger’s bill at a restaurant or supermarket, buying a colleague a chocolate with a small note of encouragement stuck on it, complimenting the lady working at the till… sending your best friend flowers for no reason at all. Just smiling and greeting more people. By looking at ways of blessing people in our immediate surroundings, we change the world.
“As one person I cannot change the world. But I can change the world of one person.”
Shift Our Focus