While the topic is a little too philosophical and I may not be able to do complete justice to it, I can completely do justice to my belief that happiness does not lie in a circumstance or a situation, it lies with me and within me.
During my teenage years, I went through a lot of ups and downs (like every teenager, really). I would depend on my friends to make me happy, I would depend on materialistic things to be happy, on my family and what not? My happiness was always in control of somebody else. I would get upset if I didn’t get anything, or somebody didn’t talk to me or behave with me the way I wanted them to. It was only a little ago, that I understood the value of ‘I’. On my journey to explore who this ‘I’ is, and how would I want to define it, the process made me become the owner of myself. The ‘I’ taught me how to take responsibility of my own emotions, thoughts, choices and feelings. The process taught me that if I want to be happy, I could be happy at any moment without depending on anyone. The ownership made me value the “I” or my own self. And now, this explored ‘I’ believes that you could do it too.
The above mentioned equation is a beautiful portrayal of how our happiness is indirectly proportionate to what you want. The greater the desires and longing for what you want, the lesser you value what you already have and hence, the lesser the happiness. There is an ardent need for teenagers to understand the difference between ‘wanting’ or ‘needing’ something. While researches prove that shopping does help in elevating your mood, I ask you, till how long would you want to derive momentary happiness out of the materialistic things you keep spending mindlessly upon?
In my opinion, everything ‘new’ does magic to lift up your moods. And shopping does the same to us. Each time we buy something new, we (our brain in the hypothalamus) release oxytocin. Oxytocin is the hormone of relaxation, feeling good about life, feeling whole and connected.
While many of you may consider shopping to be one of the ways to release the hormone and feel good, and an easy way of course. But just to bring clarity to the thought, it’s not shopping that releases the hormone. It’s the idea of novelty, financial independence, ownership, self reliance that comes along with shopping which help you release the hormone. The idea of dependence on shopping to feel the above mentioned things becomes a major factor which drives the retail therapy.
It’s not just shopping that we have tried to manipulate with. It’s food, sleep, outings. Ordering a pizza from Dominos on a dull day cheers you up. Sleeping and shutting the world off the world, helps you feel better. Outings with friends is also one way in which we as teenagers feel better. While it may be considered a natural behaviour, happiness coaches have observed that frequency of such behaviour rising in teenagers with each rising day. Sit back and ask why?
It’s because, we as teenagers, fear to take responsibilities. We run away from them. To check the number of whistles of the pressure cooker gives us anxiety. If such a little job makes us panic and we don’t want to do it, how about taking the responsibility of our emotions and feelings regardless of the situations? A person can choose to be as calm as a river even in the situations of turmoil. Effective management of our emotions is the key to achieve Emotional Intelligence and long lasting happiness. It’s only when you master your emotions, you’ll be the person everyone wants to be around and be the star of the show.
Signing off with a hope to have enlightened the choice of choosing your happiness and a hope to see smiling faces of each reader reading this blog. May you have an ever lasting happiness.
Author: A blog by Bhavya Arora. Bhavya is a psychology student who holds keen interest in interacting with people as much as she can. She communicates through her words,write-ups and actions. Her love for the virtue of love defines her the most. She holds a passion for living life, a life lived to spread happiness.