This idea that we should strive to be happy at all times is a false narrative. It presents us with a fictional truth, usually in service of selling us something. Be it a lifestyle, a car, detergent, or love.
This idea that every moment should be filled by the elevated state that is happiness is just flat wrong.
The baseline should be contentment with spikes of happy and the very occasional unhappy moment.
A constant elevated state of happy is, I assure you, drug induced. Or a fabrication.
It’s all about the base state.
Baseline content with spikes of unhappy with very occasional spikes of happy would be considered unhappy.
Baseline unhappy with spikes of contentment and very occasional extreme spikes of happy would be considered miserable or depressed.
Baseline happy should be considered manic. Contact your/a therapist.
Baseline extremes both indicate something is seriously wrong. Both need to be addressed with changes.
Is it weird to miss that heightened state of alertness? That paranoid hyper vigilance which comes from trauma?
Because, I miss it. It was the one thing that made me feel power over my anxiety and depression. The thought being, at least I can see what others can’t. Can know what others don’t. Be aware of the world in a way that few are.
I know why I lost it. I spent alot of effort to no longer be constantly aware of every little thing. And I’m not saying it’s gone completely. When my anxiety flares or when I’m in a genuinely unknown or scary situation its back. But in my day to day, its gone.
But still, is it weird to miss one of the things which defined you? Which you used in proactive ways? Even if it was harmful overall.
It may be odd. It may just be human nature. To miss what was, even if what was, was harmful.
I used to get 4 hours of sleep and I was fine
Well, not fine
In that I could keep going through the motions
But during that time I was deeply depressed
Everything was nothing and even sleep was no refuge
As I pulled away from that constant state
I found my habits to be the same
And that 4 hours of sleep would set me spinning
I’d be fine until I became tired
And then I’d second guess
And everything was off
Nothing was fine
Everything felt like it never would be
My work schedule changed a few years ago
Forcing me to change my habits
I was always good
At least in the beginning of such a change
And my sleep habits shifted
I was getting 8 hours of sleep
And those emotional spinnouts occurred less and less
And then 8 became 6
And they started to happen again
Then 6 became 4 and it was again my new normal
Same as the old normal
And while its obvious now
I came to realize that I needed that sleep
And the corporate culture I was in prized my inability to sleep
To be able to function on 4 hours seemed like a miracle
And I still find it useful
Because sleep isn’t the only thing that kept me depressed
Stress will eat away at me
And I will punish myself
Until its too late
And I’ll not sleep
Because not sleeping is within my control
And I need that feeling of being capable
To really function
But for me
It’s not really optional
I can tell the difference in my emotional state
Now that I see it
How can I keep hurting myself this way
Though, I know I’ll still push
It’s in my nature to push
But now I see
And I will sleep when it gets too much
Because sleep is again a refuge
And dreams are a whole life lived
And I’m so tired
Of not living