Starting on Monday, September 6, 2010 (at 4:00 in the morning, so technically Sunday, September 5), I started taking a picture of something that made me happy every day. My Project Happiness 365 started as a proactive act on my part to ward off deep depression. It was spurred by heartbreak as an effort to pull myself out of the wreckage, but now it's fueled by gratitude and a desire to find the beauty in everyday, "mundane" life. This is my honest, vulnerable journey from Hot Mess to Winning. I hope this helps. Oh, and if you're in pain, good; that means you put your whole heart into something. And if you think it won't ever get better, I promise it will. Here's my proof.

PROJECT HAPPINESS 365

Here’s a disclaimer.

THIS IS ABOUT ME. ME ME ME ME ME. Alright. I’m glad we got that settled.

So I’ve been struggling with happiness a bit as of late. I’ve lost a lot of what I’ve gained and realized. Sometimes I’m better at staying in each moment and laughing, and some days I’m not very good at it. I mean, yes I can realize that I have beautiful loving friends but sometimes it just didn’t mean as much to me. I KNOW IT’S AWFUL! Especially for me. For everything I’ve written. But like any other human being I’m not the greatest at taking my own advice. SURPRISE. Some days I smile for no reason and some days I can’t stop holding my breath. Some days I grab onto my stomach and shake it to try and let go of some mysterious bowling ball that has decided to camp out there.

But I’ve decided to take control of my life. Cuz it’s mine. My life. I still strongly believe you have the choice between happy or sad. So I choose happy once again. I’m doing things that make ME happy. I’m vocalizing every day. I’m sticking to a strict work out schedule. I am eating pretty well (ignore the ice cream with kitkats I CAN’T HELP MYSELF I’M A DAIRYHOLIC!!!). I’m journaling every day. I started my self esteem journal all over again cuz I lost a lot of what I had accomplished. I’m listening to some beautiful artists: India.Arie, Lauryn Hill, Mumford & Sons. I’m walking down the street jamming out and belting to my iPod without apologies. I’m saying, “Hi” to strangers that may or may not shank me for wearing too many colors. And I’m remembering the words Alex Mersman once said to me: “You’re not crazy. You just have so much love that sometimes you don’t know what to do with it.” So I’m giving it away. To myself and to my friends and family. I’m watching Friends almost every day which puts a huge smile on my face. I’m pulling me out.

And now, I’ve decided to start Project Happiness 365. Some people have albums on facebook where they take one picture every day for a year. Well. I’m going to do that but with things that make me happy. To remind myself that there is something every day that makes me happy. And it keeps me on the lookout. Keeps me in the moment.

So here’s Day 1. And congrats, Katie. It’s you.

Our house is frigid. And it’s still summer. But this is Katie bundled up. She called herself “Marshmallow Man”. And the drunken face was intentional.

This will be my year. Tim once told me, “Everyone has their neuroses. Everyone has that negative voice in their head. Yours is a bit louder than everyone else’s.” Well. I’m not giving up. This is my senior year and I’m determined to have an amazing year. And here goes.

“All the things I thought I knew I’m learning them again.”
~”The Heart of the Matter” by India.Arie

I miss me. And you. But I really really miss me. But I promise me that I’m coming back.
GIVING IT AWAY
James

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