“How’s everything going with you?”
Without hesitation I began,
“Life is good, but still…”
“I mean, I really do like my life right now but…”
I paused, searching for something to gripe about…because that’s what I always do. How unnecessary, though? Truly, life was good. My rent was paid, my health was great…I had the privilege of making up problems on a Thursday afternoon over an iced coffee. So why did I feel the need to temper my good vibes with a soggy “but”?
I was reminded of three things:
Similar to my sense of self-deprecating humor and sarcasm, I use light-hearted negativity to cut myself down before someone else or something else does.
Many times I feel guilty for enjoying parts of my life to the fullest because I haven’t worked or don’t feel like I’m working “hard enough.”
I’m simply accustomed to feeling a way about certain things. The stories I tell myself about always being behind or always making mistakes are stories that I know like the back of my hand. As twisted as it sounds, they make me feel assured, correct, and comfortable. Plus, I’ve invested so much time and energy into these stories that they’ve become a part of my self-image. It makes sense that I’d want to inject them into any conversation that makes a departure from that familiar “life sucks” narrative.
But in the long run, none of this stuff is useful.
So now I’ve made it a point to recognize that I can enjoy my life when I’m feeling it and express gratitude without any other negative statements to balance the scales. After all, the better I feel about right now, the more open I am to receiving good things in the future.
“Life is good. Period.”
That’s not the way I usually end a sentence, but I’m getting used to it.