Do Happy Instead

John Whitaker Current Affairs

I can’t even begin to tell you how different the final version of this post looks from the original draft. I decided to “do happy” instead.

Allow me to explain.

Because this is a nest of trust, I know I can share with you a dark, sordid secret. I’m a Conservative.

And let me tell ya, sports fans, in Human Resources it’s very lonely here on the Right. It’s a much safer bet to just shut up and silently support your beliefs, lest you be labeled a bunch of really nasty names that would be more appropriate if I was invading Poland, but I digress. But, to my occasional detriment, as an Irish-American, I can allow that part of my heritage to rise up in me like a cartoon thermometer when I perceive unfairness or double-standards being applied. So when I see someone like Amy Coney Barrett sit through days of verbal haranguing to provide soundbytes for personal gain, it ticks me off just a bit. Or when I see the Social Media giants silence a story that doesn’t align with their political aspirations, it tends to annoy. Or maybe it was the Town Hall where the Moderator….see, that’s where the post was going. No good would come of that.

Regardless of the “why,” I let it get to me and my furious fingers were rat-a-tatting away with a style that could generously be called “spirited.” You know that crease in between your eyebrows? The one that gets more pronounced when you have stink face? Yeah, that one. Mine was cavernous. But I’m tired of fighting, seriously.

Then I was reminded of something today preparing for my podcast interview with the great Dr. Pele. Happiness is up to me. In the most volatile and divisive time I can ever remember, I have to habitually remind myself that my happiness is a choice. It’s a muscle to exercise – to feel victimized, picked on, slighted, aggrieved, cheated – all that does is perpetuate resentment, anger, and pettiness. We’re all familiar with the “when you’re a hammer, everything looks like a nail” saying, right? How about if you’re a nail? Does everything look like a hammer? When you are constantly waiting to be offended, that’s exactly what you’ll be.

The other truth we all need to come terms with is this; “happiness” will not be an outcome of the upcoming election. No matter who comes out on top, any exuberance or vindication you or I feel will be quickly replaced with the fact that nothing has changed. Your guy won? Great, now what? My guy won? Sweet, now what? Your 40% of the population savaged my 40% of the population for the last nine months (and counting) and vice versa.

No election result will overcome that schism. As Dr. Pele put it, “happiness is not an outcome, it’s an action.”

So do happy instead. That’s what I’m doing.

Want to hear more? Check out HR Hardball, The Podcast on Apple Podcasts, Stitcher, and TuneIn.