Are You Happy Now?
To accept the responsibility of being a child of God is
To accept the best that life has to offer you
-Stella Terrill Mann
I read this quote today, in the Artist’s Way (the program/book I am going through as part of my creative unblocking/artistic rehabilitation), and it absolutely floored me. It floored because this is essentially what God had been saying to me during my prayer time this morning.
It was a tumultuous morning emotionally, and I was wondering if I did the right thing in quitting my job. My internal dialogue went something like this: Me: Yes I am unhappy, but it pays money and it’s a Christian school, surely the ideas of sacrifice and responsibility are more important to God. Maybe I did the wrong thing. I still haven’t found a job, maybe that’s God’s way of saying I did the wrong thing. God: You’re allowed to be happy. Me: what? God: You’re allowed to be happy?
Honesty, I was speechless, I have been taught h that God takes care of us, God leads and guides us, God heals us, God protects us, and even that God provides for us, but I’ve never heard that God actively wants me to be happy.
I have always done things based on what was “right” or “responsible”, but basically I did things based on what would keep other people happy. In the last four years, some my biggest mistakes were made because I did what I thought other people would want me to do.
In The Artist’s Way, Julia Cameron says that this people pleasing behavior is self-destruction, in that you are destroying your true self for the benefit of others.
We get to be happy. People aren’t always going to like that we aren’t doing what they want us to do, but we get to be happy regardless of others. I’m saying that we can hurt others to be happy, but we if we don’t feel happy or whole when we do something, we shouldn’t force ourselves to do it just to please someone.
Now in relationships we have to make sacrifices for the people we care about. I often end up doing things I don’t enjoy doing, but I often feel happy doing them because they bring joy to someone I care. The things that I am really talking about here are those things that feel toxic or abusive, or that drain us without providing anything, or the things that cause us to deny who we truly are. These are the things we don’t do. I don’t particularly enjoy playing conventional sports ( I prefer boxing, kickboxing, MMA, basically any sport where you get hit in the face), but I can play football without compromising my identity and overall happiness. My current job is a drain and I feel like I have to conform to something I’m not to do the job. This is the situation we need to get out of.
We shouldn’t have to play games. We get to be happy.
Are You Happy Now?