I came across a good quote recently about marriage being about weathering the good times and the bad times. Which is fantastic and lets one off the hook tremendously. This sets a pretty low bar for most couples!
If this approach was employed in relationships it would eliminate most fights and expectations that the other party would morph into the best version of themselves. An unselfish Sex-god and/or Fart or nag free version of themselves. Awesome! And if marriage can be rendered this pragmatically¬†, then life can be simplified by viewing it as an exercise in mastering: Not Feeling like Shit.
I know right? It’s emotional Hunger Games out there. Actually in there. In that intricately wired ¬†lump of jelly perched atop your shoulders. A game without obvious rules where your bad emotions are roaming around armed to the hilt ready to take out all your good emotions.
I’m entirely convinced there are more negative emotions than good emotions. I will research this at some stage. Until then I rely on my observations. And my opinion. You can have nothing else but you can still have your opinion and own it loudly and at length. ¬†This is the secret of success to the long running Seinfeld show. ¬†A bunch of freaks with nothing but their opinions. And Friends. Fantastic viewing until they ran out of controversy and started to get Stuff. And relationships. All of a sudden Boriing! and the shark is well and truly jumped.
Back to mastering “not feeling like shit”. It helps to¬†start with the premise that our feelings are wholly illogical.¬†It’s entirely possible to feel like shit in the good times and euphoric during disaster. Totally counter-intuitive.
And regular old life is the most confusing of all. Generally you start your day not feeling like crap. Unless you’ve recently experienced grief or significant loss or maybe had a recent breakthrough with your counselor, therapist, sponsor or life coach or dealer. Or you’re merely perplexed and flummoxed by the lack of rules to the point of desperation. The exclusions for starting your day feeling like “not crap”, are endless and experienced by the majority¬†of people¬†a good portion¬†of the time! We can only conclude the majority of humans past puberty are feeling godawful right from the get go most of the time!
Bad mental health is the new normal! But you’re not alone. This how cultures hold together. Misery loves company. This is also how some marriages hold together. Some of the most successful marriages, if success is measured by overcoming the ever present urge to murder one’s spouse for his insert, [annoying inability to take care of his shit; bad habit, lack of appreciation for all that you do]
By and large we’re never honest about our Shit with anyone apart from our life partner. Or partners if that’s your thing. We carry on shining our shit for Facebook and we pretends all’s well.
But it’s unnerving. Ever noticed how you feel after a good lengthy consumption of all the shit on your Newsfeed? Try it. Scroll and read when you’re not under the influence of anything. Even coffee. So you can really gauge how you feel. And so you’re less likely to react. Sometimes you come away feeling unsettled and vaguely soiled. And that my friends is because whatever goes said, there is an awful lot that is unsaid. Unless you’re a guy and you just read the dirty jokes.
And¬†if life hasn’t knocked you before your feet hit the floor of a morning; there’s¬†hormones:¬†The soupy mix of hormones that our brains are awash in has a huge say in our mood and attitude. And they don’t care how good we feel. Evolution has zero regard for our Feewings. Hormones¬†just want to influence our behavior so we reproduce. Hormones are not there to make you feel good. Their purpose is to get you physically ready to have kids. Despite whether or not you are mentally and emotionally ready to have kids.
Is anybody ever? There are just greater and lesser stages of “not-readiness.” And¬†hormones always beat reason every single time. ¬†“Wham, bam. Thank you Ma’am!” And ¬†Thank you Dean Martin for putting it in a song and polishing the turd of the concept that is “true love”.
It may feel like love at first sight, but through every step of the courtship it’s an evaluation of your potential as a genetic donor or bearer of sprogs. Using essentially your nose! We’re a logical rational super species with a¬†greater or lesser¬†comprehension of statistics and we still sniff out our life partners. WTF? Pheromones I think they’re called. Hormones on ecstasy. And once again, reason is out the window.
Naturally once the kids have arrived you have many more reasons to feel like crap on awakening. Your sleep routine is buggered and so is your sex life. Until the kids are totally off your dime and life insurance policies at the age of twenty five.
Yes hormones are a very potent and ever present influence. At least until your forties when they start to dial back and this results in men spending a lot of time on golf courses and/or proving their sporting, fishing, hunting ¬†prowess. Women start thinking less about how they want to be seen as successful and more time being who we are, not how others want us to be. It’s more important to be true to ourselves and not someone else’s bullshit rules with all due respect to their no doubt honest intentions. This does start defining ones circle of friendship especially when we start giving our opinions loudly at dinner parties. And it doesn’t affect how we feel when we wake up the next day. Because there’s a lot of reasons to wake up feeling shit but worrying about someone else’s opinion shouldn’t be one of them.
Basically you got it made if you woke up feeling level. That there folks is the holy grail of success. That’s as close to enlightenment as any overthinking member of a super-species is ever likely to come.