You Can’t Be Happy Everywhere

I live in Texas, as most know.

Texas is known for a few things: cowboys, “y’all,” Waffle House, and inconsistent weather patterns.

Currently, nearly the entire state has been under siege by something incredibly powerful. Not all have made it out alive. The ice storm is just part of it. The other part? Boredom.

Frozen leaves in my neighborhood when I was out walking yesterday.

I feel like Texas may have an entirely different way of thinking and living than the rest of the U.S. Many a Texan will rustle up a hearty, “Well heck yeahhhh!” in agreement, because son, this is Texas.

But not this Texan.

My Facebook feed today and yesterday consisted of many of my friends complaining about their imprisonment due to the ice storm.

“I am SOOOOO bored. There is nothing to do in this house!”

“I have cabin fever. Blah!”

“This ice is ruining my life.”

“Can the ice just melt already?”

“I’m bored.”

“My kids are driving me insane. Ready for this to end.”

Note: some of the same people now complaining about boredom, were ecstatically boasting about not having to go in to work for two days. Which is it, folks?

This not only frustrates me but also (re)opens my eyes to a very sneaky problem that is normally covered up by jobs, school, running errands, taking kids places, video games, Netflix, blankly staring into tiny illuminated screens disguised as windows to the world….

Art exhibit from my trip to Reykjavik, Iceland. This illustrates so much truth, it’s scary.

The artist:

That problem is the inability to be. No one can just do nothing; no one can simply be content.

The same people who have been complaining about the ice ruining their day will also be complaining when they return to work, school, when they “have no time.” They have no concept of what living in the moment is. They have no understanding of how to be present.

You can’t be happy everywhere because you are only in one place at one time. You can only be you, and you can only be where you are in the present moment.

“We’re so caught up in trying to do everything, experience all the essential things, not miss out on anything important…We can’t read all the good books, watch all the good films, go to all the best cities in the world, try all the best restaurants, meet all the great people…Life is better when we don’t try to do everything. Learn to enjoy the slice of life you experience, and life turns out to be wonderful.” 

– Leo Bubauta

Our society is constantly on the go and if they aren’t coming from somewhere, they’re going somewhere. When do we give ourselves time to stop and just be? We don’t. So when we are given the glorious and precious gift of two days off of work, school, and any other responsibilities, we complain about it on Facebook, fishing for a “like” of sympathy.

In my personal life, I have been able to learn how to be through yoga and meditation. This has changed the way my mind works, which has changed the way I behave. I feel like I possess a skeleton key to everyone who has qualms with being present, but I can’t just give it to them. I have to let them find it.

By the way, Texas, you look ridiculous to the rest of the country when we are still above 0 degrees and our friends up north are in -15 and below; and are still going outside, carrying on, and enjoying themselves.

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