I’m feeling a little down at the moment; it hit me just a few minutes ago. It felt completely out of the blue, because I’d been having a pretty good day: I slept in until 6 and woke up in a good mood; I had a pretty productive day at college; submitted two assessment items early; hung out with my friends; came home early and played video games with my housemate; discovered a funny TV show (Portlandia); ate some delicious curry. A good day.
So, why the blues?
I couldn’t figure it out, until I traced back to the last moment that I felt good, and it was while I was on Facebook. A friends brother had posted how excited he was to be moving in with his girlfriend. This should have pleased me as they are a both great people and a beautiful couple.
The fact that this made me sad (and it is in no way to do with any romantic feelings I have for either of them, which I don’t) made me realise; other peoples good fortune and happiness makes me feel bad. This probably isn’t uncommon at all, but I think it’s unhealthy.
I’ve been seeing happiness, good fortune, success and love as a zero-sum game. It makes me scared that when others experience these things, there is somehow less chance that I will. It makes it near impossible to be genuinely happy when a friend shares good news, and there is a shameful little sense of satisfaction when things go wrong for them.
I know this is awful, and completely backwards. And if the law of attraction (like attracts like) is true, then it’s probably a contributing factor in the shitty quality of my life.
Logically, I know that there is no well of happiness somewhere that is in danger of running dry. I need to keep telling myself this, until I feel it, too.
This is one of the first traits that I want to work on changing. Perhaps when I can start thinking of happiness as a positive-sum game, I will be able to feel genuine happiness at the good fortunes of my loved ones, and bring a little more happiness and good fortune into my own life.