How to be Happy.

Everyone wants to be happy, and to live a happy life. It’s somewhat of a sweeping generalisation, I know…but one which pretty much holds true across the board.

I mean unless you’re a homicidal maniac who enjoys other people’s pain and suffering – or a gym enthusiast vegan who enjoys the masochistic pleasure of seemingly making yourself suffer. In those cases I can’t relate at all – but those folks would probably tell you (as you strap them into a straight-jacket) that they derive pleasure from those senseless acts, and consequently are happy, or at least are making a distinct effort to attain happiness…however bizarre it may appear to us regular humanoids.

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So basically, I’m still right…sort of.

And while you may be less inclined to trust in a no-good bum writer like myself, you’ll probably hold more hope in my old pal, Socrates – despite the fact he didn’t ever come up with any clear-cut suggestions as to how to actually be happy. But whatever…

John are you seriously saying you’re better than Socrates? Your ego is completely off the charts, good sir.”

Well, no – I’m just pointing out that I have a bit of a method to happiness that seems to work for me – and all he ever did was ponder, and deal in vague outlines about self-examination and virtues as with most philosophers of his time. 

Hmm, he’s widely considered to have played a fundamental part in the growth of Western thinking…are you sure you’re not just jealous of his luscious beard? Because you can’t grow a proper one?”

Unfair, and mean – next question.

John you’re writing this yourself. Just stop if you’re going to be a baby about it – you’re coming across as a lunatic as it is. Also, we’re out of milk – get some next time you’re out please.”

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Ahem, sorry about that. But I mean yeah, he was a smart bloke and all – so I’m not saying I wouldn’t have invited him to the pub every once in a while; he believed in the study of reason, the search of truth, and the admittance of our own ignorance, which all sounds dandy. But he had no ready answers, which I’m sure would get frustrating after the seventh or eighth pint. In fact I could imagine waiting for him to use the gents, and then darting out to another pub to find some more digestible truth there; probably revolving around sports, and a drunken take on world events. After all it’s usually the simple things, you know? And he sure did make it very hard work for people…

But the thing is happiness doesn’t have to be a cloudy pie in the sky sort of deal…in fact I think your pie should be right here, right now – with as many toppings and sauces as you please, and with no guilt over eating the last slice, ever. (Is this still just a metaphor? Way too into it!) 

Admittedly Socrates said something similar to this, when he stated we should actively pursue happiness through our actions and that it is in this exploration that we will expand our consciousness and become happier in the process…

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….but as usual the most important element (the ‘how?!’) was neglected…perhaps he kept it in his beard, and only showed his closest friends…the selfish creature. But as I don’t have a beard, I will share my little pearl of wisdom in the hope that it can boost your overall happiness levels. It won’t quite have you doing a moonwalk on a rainbow (unless you mix my guidance with LSD – which you are welcome to try if you are over the age of eleven) but it should provide less misery, and a greater feeling of contentedness. 

So this is it, and it isn’t much really: 

But each and every year I try and better the last one…I try to put more into my passions, and more effort into my writing. I try to say “yes” to more opportunities, to take more trips, and to experience a wider range of what this wonderful earth has to offer. I try to keep in touch with family and old friends with more regularity, and try to tell those I love that I love them more often. Basically I try to be a better version of myself from top to bottom with every passing year…the keyword being “try”. 

Sometimes it doesn’t work out – sometimes life serves you up a poop sandwich, with an extra side of poop fries (instead of that delicious pie in the sky), but when it does you have to keep going… and keep trying. It’s as simple as that. Personally I’ve had a very difficult year so far for numerous reasons…but it has taken till now to shake myself free and remember that I need to keep up that pursuit of happiness (cheers Socrates, mate) – the future, and my subsequent happiness is in my own hands. 

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So as you read this I am planning four different 2015 trips in four different countries…one which is a Christmas visit home (WOOOO!), I’m also editing down a new comedy video, and finally working on my dark humour novel again. I just need to send a nice email to my parents, and I’m golden!

But yeah, that’s it folks. Find the things that matter to you, the things that make you feel that warm fuzzy Teletubbies belly feeling, and then make steps to do them as often as possible. Happiness will follow. 

Whatever you do, don’t just accept misery…you deserve happiness, just the same as everyone. 

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2014 in Review

Here’s an excerpt:

The Louvre Museum has 8.5 million visitors per year. This blog was viewed about 180,000 times in 2014. If it were an exhibit at the Louvre Museum, it would take about 8 days for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

Thank you to everyone! With special thanks to holdmethrillmekissme , 10eveningflowerscharlypriesterikakind , and xiotteilegends

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Job Hunt

Wouldn’t it be great if we didn’t have to have a job?  And when I say job, I mean the thing you don’t really want, but get up most days to go to, and spend most of your life complaining about – yeah, that thing. I am not referring to dreams, callings, or purposes – I am talking about the “it’s just a job” jobs…the largely “just for the money” jobs.

(You know…the ones that destroy your soul, and make you feel completely replaceable).

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Apologies for the pessimistic tone! But I have been on the job hunt as it were, and so far I haven’t caught much…if this was in the wild sometime BC, and I was a caveman…well, yeah…the family would be going hungry right now. A lot of things have just went wrong, or at least haven’t turned out right – whilst others have been an undeniable travesty.

So here goes:

* Summer 2014: I spent two months in England battling the Korean embassy for a work-visa…I had signed for a new school, but just had to get the legal side of things straightened out (for some reason they wanted to make sure I wasn’t a murderer…which I thought was fair enough). One delay came after another, and every phone call was met with “you should just wait!” Well…I had been waiting…and it was getting ridiculous.  Fortunately two days before I was due to be flown out, the visa arrived! HOOOOORAAAAY! Unfortunately the day after this, my school emailed me saying it was going to close down…so they no longer needed me as a teacher. Fucking fantastic. I flew out anyway, as I felt it would be easier to find jobs while I was actually in the country. GULP.

* Autumn 2014: Got a few things in the works, as you may have heard, but needed something more concrete to pay the bills, and you know – feed myself. So I began interviewing for new schools…the first one I interviewed for was in an old neighbourhood, which was kind of quaint, and interesting. The boss had a very errr…bizarre story for me though – whilst discussing the school, and the whole set up of the operation, he went on to inform me that the whole thing plays out like an unbelievable TV drama; he has one teacher who ran away to “get married to an Iraqi man”, and then returned out of the blue, but told no one what had happened – another who has been working there for seventeen years “because he won’t leave” – another who became pregnant, and continued to deny it (why?) even when she was in the later inflated balloon stage…another who…okay, let’s leave it there. I just thought: what the hell is this place?! And where is the exit?!

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* Autumn 2014 (Continued): I interviewed at another school…which was weird in another way – I got there, and sat down with the chap…he nodded, asked one or two questions…well, no…they weren’t questions they were just vague statements – he then said I looked good so he had no problems, I had the job if I wanted it, and that we could sign the contract the following week. The whole thing took about five minutes, if that. I was pleased as the school was close to Taco Bell, which meant that I’d be having a splendid lunch for two weeks in a row! However…and it’s a big however…the week after signing the contract, the agent got in touch with me…and said that, that school l is closing down too! WHAAAAAT THE FIZUCKKKK?! It’s like fucking King Midas…except everything I touch doesn’t turn to gold…it turns to literal human shit!!!?? What is wrong with me?! ARGHHHH! Breathe…breathe…breathe…

* Winter 2014: I got a temporary position for a couple of weeks at a school, and so far it is going okay – actually they offered me a full time job come February – but the timing won’t be right. This when put with my private tutors…editing gigs…and other things, means that I won’t die of starvation, which is naturally a huge relief. I am excited to be going home for Christmas! But I am continuing on my job search…mrs-satan/ got in touch actually, and it should say a lot that I am tempted to return – they offered extremely short hours, and only with kindergarten too – so it’d be playing with kids, and then writing, and doing whatever I wanted for the rest of the time. Sounds sweet…but then again…I’d be in her hellish arena once more. Meanwhile, my Korean friend is trying to get me a job at his workplace – something about social media, I don’t know – it’d be a real grown up job…suit and tie by rule, not just because…arghhh, all of this hurts my head.

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That’s why I have day-dreamed about how fantastic it would be if we all just wandered around, doing whatever – naturally it is impossible, but still. I hope that one day, I can make enough money from the things I love, so that I don’t have to have all of these money-woes, and job worries. It reduces from the beauty of life itself, because you become fixated on money, money, money.

ARGHHH! Now Abba is stuck in my head…I have only myself to blame. Wish me luck my friends, I hope you are all doing well.

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