Choose Happiness. Choose Cheese.

“If only….”

How often do we say that to ourselves, “If only I had____,”  or “If only _________would happen”?

Today is the day to stop waiting for something or someone.  There are no ideal circumstances. Most of life is dusted with a bit of chaos.  It’s how we respond to the chaos and the fragmentation that’s important.

It’s not about being saccharine or blindly optimistic.  It’s about owning what’s your’s–your issues and concerns–and not carrying what doesn’t belong to you.  You can’t control what other people think or feel.  You can control who you hang out with, how you spend your time, etc.

sliced cheese on brown table top

Photo by NastyaSensei Sens on Pexels.com

Today, choose some happiness for yourself.  For me this is trying a new cheese, butterkase.  Yes, it sounds a bit decadent.  I hope it is.  I saw it in the sales bin and took a small sample home.  I love cheese, but I also love the adventure of trying something new, something atypical–tasting a different culture.  I may not be ready this moment to hop a plane to Europe and sample some fromage, but I can still trek to my grocery store for a little adventure.

This may sound cheesy, but so often we get into ruts–the same old, same old–and that causes us some unhappiness.  Life gets blah…That’s when it’s time to try something new and it doesn’t have to be big…it could be as small as piece of gourmet cheese.

So often, food causes us stress and unhappiness.  We treat food as the enemy.  We buy into draconian eating do-s and don’ts that suck the joy out of eating.  Frankly, we are so privileged–we have more food than ever, little risk of famine and we still manage to take the joy out of eating.

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We need to replace our “if only-s” with “what if-s”.  That opens up so much more possibility and frankly, fun!  Happiness is choice.  Don’t wait on your happiness.  Choose it today and everyday.

Weighty Self-Worth Issues

This week, I had a lesson in how valuable I am.  From time to time, we say to ourselves, “I’m valuable.  I’m important.  I have something to offer,” etc.  It’s easy to pay lip service to those affirmations, but it’s a whole different matter when we actually have to calculate our worth in real terms.  Yesterday night, I was crunching a bunch of numbers regarding some of my business ventures and I realized that I had a good sense of my worth.  I wasn’t asking “Who would want to pay for that?”  Instead, I was asking, “Who wouldn’t?”

Not everyone has had the epiphany I’ve had though.  It’s been well documented that skinnier women get paid more than heavier women and all women are touched by the gender pay gap in some way as well.

Freek Vermeulen explains:

Various studies have shown that overweight people are seen as less conscientious, less agreeable, less emotionally stable, less productive, lazy, lacking in self-discipline, and even dishonest, sloppy, ugly, socially unattractive, and sexually unskilled; the list goes on and on.* The stereotypes run so deep that even obese people hold these same discriminatory beliefs about other obese people.

It’s hard to stand up for what you’re worth as a plus size woman in the world.  It’s hard to fight years of stereotypes, especially the ones we’ve internalized and had used against us.  The saddest thing to me is that people with weight challenges do often hold these beliefs about others with weight issues.  I know I too struggle with this and I have to check myself.

Copy of Copy of Copy of Copy of Copy of Copy of Copy of Copy of Copy of Copy of Copy of body positivity.pngToday’s the day to really ponder what you think you’re worth.  Are you short-selling yourself because you’ve told your body makes you “less than”?  You’re important and valuable whether you’re a size 0 or a size 5X.

Also, don’t forget to measure value in more abstract terms too.  Real dollars and cents make sense, but are you treated well at your work?  Do you feel valued and important?  Your paycheck may be adequate but the emotional cost of your work environment may be too much.  There are some things money can’t buy, and one of those things is a happy heart and an ebullient spirit.

I think one of the most freeing things that can happen for anyone struggling with body image issues is to get to that head space where you have “zero f**ks given”.  You’re just doing you.  That’s the zero you ultimately want to achieve.  Zero is not a size to achieve but an attitude to aspire to, where you know what makes you happy and you’re not allowing others to dictate to you what you should think and feel about yourself and others.  So that’s the zero that I wish all people get to–not a teensy weensy size but a big, bold attitude of self empowerment and self worth.

 

 

A Choice We Make

Copy of Copy of Copy of Copy of body positivity.pngWe all have issues.  We have things that make life complicated and unpleasant.Weight is a hot button for many people and they get caught in the trap of thinking and even saying, “if only I were thinner,” then waiting to lose weight so that something great and magical can happen for them.

The truth is, happiness is a choice we make each and everyday, fat or thin, young or old, healthy or unhealthy.  We can choose how we react to challenging circumstances.  We can meet them with resentment and an attitude of entitlement or we can meet them with gratitude and happiness.  Happy people choose to be happy, each and every day.  That’s not to say things don’t cause us sadness and pain, but we can’t hold onto our pain and anger like a badge of honor, because pain and anger chain us to the past and being happy is an experience that gets us and keeps us in the present, which is so full of so many beautiful things, if we’re paying attention.

Today, choose to be happy and see what it yields for you.

happy heart

 

Sometimes I Press the “Random” Button

Sometimes not everything is peachy in Kristin-land.  I have my ups and downs.  There’s that catchphrase, “The struggle is real.”  Well, the stupid is real too and some days are full of very real and very consequential stupid.

fml bitmoji

I have had to learn how to manage a few roller coaster situations  in the last few months.   I’ve had to work on checking in with myself and I’ve found a surprising source of happy-my Tumblr.  My Tumblr has been godsend the past few months.

My Tumblr consists of mostly things I find fun, interesting and make me happy.  I can’t tell you how many times I’ve pressed the “Random” button, seen a photo I’ve long forgotten and broken into a smile.  It’s my happy bank.

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There’s a lot of rancor on social media.  It’s the zeitgeist.  However, I think we all need a little digital happy place, one that we don’t feel the need to impress too much or grow following, just a space to let those memories that make us happy “be”.  If I were craftier, I’d scrapbook, but then I’d have to carry it around everywhere.   Considering my penchant for mislaying things, it’s probably best that my happy bank is digitized.

My point is, sometimes life hits hard.  It may be difficult to see the blessings.  You may be barraged by stupid.  When those times come, it’s important to remember the good times.  Fill your happy bank and your heart will always be full of gratitude when you need it most.  For me, it’s a small space on Tumblr.  Explore what works for you.