Feb 24, 2015 by Reen Rose
Do you feel that somehow you aren’t as happy as you should be? We are bombarded by the idea that our ultimate goal in life is to experience never-ending bliss.
Do you remember the last time you went away for a holiday? Did you have fun? Hopefully we can all answer yes to that question. Did anything negative happen during your vacation? If you think hard enough you are likely to recall one or two things that were less than ideal. Did they ruin your entire trip? Probably not; they were just bumps in the road, part of the adventure. Unless we choose to dwell on those unfortunate occurrences, they usually dim and leave us with happy memories and positive feelings.
I call myself a happiness enthusiast, but I am the first to acknowledge that life is going to involve a wide range of emotions from ecstasy to despair. Our negative emotions actually serve a purpose. Without them we would be on a slippery slope to extinction. Positive psychologists looked at how we evaluate our skills levels when we are feeling positive as opposed to when we feel negative. During times of good emotions we tend to overestimate our abilities. This gives us the right mindset to learn new skills and make lasting relationships. When we feel unhappy, angry, or frustrated we are much more accurate with the assessment of our skills.
Our negative emotions arise when we feel threatened, or see ourselves in a win-lose situation. At these times it is important for us to know exactly what we are able to do in order to increase our chances of winning. In times gone by, winning equaled survival and in some situations that is the same today.
Although it is important to realize that sadness and frustration are a part of life, we don’t want negativity to be our predominant way of feeling. My recommendation is to aim for a little bit of negative mixed with lots of positive. Without the rain there would be no rainbow.