The obligation to be (or appear to be) happy

The obligation to be (or appear to be) happy

Who doesn’t want to be happy?

Me.

Today that question runs through the streets, knocks on the doors of houses and enters the head of anyone. Happiness is no longer an objective or a simple state to enjoy, happiness is an obligation . One must be happy at all times, for everything, and as far as possible, make others share in that happiness.

Finding happiness in self-help books

There is no consensus on an ideal of happiness. However this does not prevent bookstores from becoming infested with self-help . That if in the end this is about self-help … why should the book of the same charlatan sellers serve us all ? The books are not very far from each other, nor are they far from the neoliberal doctrine that pervades this Europe of the 21st century. “You do everything by yourself and I will continue to give lectures paid with public money from your taxes” .

In the end you find someone who works 10 hours a day doing free overtime and who, through his taxes or what he stops earning, pays a guy who goes to the company to tell them that they have to be happier, more employable, more positive , with activities to encourage “teambuilding” that, quoting the Nega, would translate into “making a fool of yourself” .

Happiness is not what we have been told

I say again that I don’t want to be happy. If happiness was this. I understand that happiness would have to be founded on other things. For Freud or Flaubert in stupidity as the basis of it . I prefer, as the song said, to think about health, money and love. In time to be able to enjoy. And little else. It is not too much to ask. Or yes, nowadays it seems to be a lot to ask.

But one thing is that having money or time is complicated and another, quite different, is that you have to be happy about not being able to pay for the house. Understanding happiness as that state of perpetuity of the smile, of the optimism and of the good vibe . Obviously in any life there is room for good moments, for joy in spite of the difficulties. But under certain circumstances it becomes impossible to achieve happiness 24 hours a day non stop proposed by the New Age gurus, self-help, coaching and so on .

The Dictatorship of the Normal Seeming

Sartre said: “Let us not waste any of our time; perhaps there were more beautiful ones, but this is ours” . I would not dare to say that there were better times, because this era has brought great advances, especially in life expectancy (we could assess whether extending life is good or bad in certain conditions, but it seems clear that almost everyone wants to live longer).

What I do believe is that there are better lives, people who are luckier (to be born is a coincidence) but we cannot exchange ourselves so we have to try to live ours, the one we have, as best as possible . But let no one come and demand anything from us, much less be happy under their ideals of supposed happiness. To the famous phrase “each person has what he deserves” we should respond with violence.Let’s say no to the posture of wanting to appear happy.

I’ve decided I don’t want to be happy

I don’t want to be happy . Whenever I have seen myself in front of a plate that looked appetizing I have thought about eating it and not taking pictures of it, when I have been partying I have thought about continuing to drink and enjoy myself not stopping to make selfies and if I have gone out for a run, to the gym or anywhere else that involves sporting activity I have thought about doing it and then taking a shower, not writing hashtags .

I am not therefore an example of happiness, quite the contrary. The thing is… and you?

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