So I wanted to take some time to write about happiness. I’m a firmly believe that we are in charge of our own happiness. Sure there are things that piss us off from time to time, or our circumstances help lead us into a state of depression. But, while these things contribute to our feelings, we ultimately decide to be happy or not.
With that said, I think it is really important for us to rejoice in other people’s happiness. We obviously have a choice when it comes to this as well. If your coworker gets a another job opportunity before you (even though you both have been working feverishly to find one), you can choose to be happy for them (or not).
I recently experienced a similar situation. I told my coworker about a new opportunity and was immediately met with anger and disappointment. Now, while I will definitely miss my old job and coworkers (some of whom became dear friends), I’m excited for the opportunities to come. I was expecting some ambivalence and maybe a little sadness because we won’t get to work together daily, but not outright anger. To be clear, this isn’t a situation of “hating”–it really is just a choice to be angry instead of sharing in my happiness.
Its important for us to share in the happiness of our friends and family because we all want that for ourselves at some point. I mean how can we truly be happy for ourselves, if we can’t delight in the happiness of a loved one?
Your friend graduated in four years (it took you five), your cousin buys a house (but you were looking for one first and still haven’t found one), your sister has five kids (and you can’t seem to have one). All reasons to feel a little sad about your particular situation, but no reason to harbor resentment or not be happy for others. Someone once said to me, “if you cannot be happy for someone’s blessings, then you’ll never get blessed.” True statement.
So to my unhappy coworker, whom I’ll miss despite our recent clash, I will continue to be happy for you as things continue to look up. Great things are in store for you, I know it! To others who are reading, be genuinely happy for your loved ones as they experience great things (even if it happens when you’re experiencing a rough patch)! I mean after all we “don’t need no hateration, holleration’ in this dancery”. Besides, your friends can usually tell if your faking it.