Thursday, June 30, 2005

Not a Content Cow or a Miserable (Wo)Man

"I can alter my life by altering the attitude of my mind."

I generally at least try to be a rational person - the kind of person that sees things for what they are. But I've recently become very, very cynical and pessimistic.

Now, while this is partially a result of other unrelated things that have put me on emotional overload, it's also a result of certain people I have been spending time with recently. I like these people (otherwise why would I hang out with them?) and they're smart (again, otherwise why would I hang out with them?) and they're nice (not so important to me, but they actually are), but they are really, really cynical. And that makes me cynical, and being cynical makes me depressed, and that's bad.

So, that whole long prelude was just to make the point that the attitude you have can make a big difference in dealing with the world. These past few days I've been in a really bad mood and I've been in a bad mood because all I've been doing is focusing on the negative.

And I'm not saying that we should all be happy and go-lucky all the time, I certainly have no interest in being oblivious to reality. But at the same time, the old adage of "would you rather be a content cow or a miserable man?" is not accurate. Thinking is hard but not something that necessarily breeds misery.

Being aware of one's surroundings when they are not ideal (and let's face it, one's surroundings are never truly ideal) is not an easy thing to do, but the answer is not to remain in a self-imposed nonage (bonus points if you know where that's from).

The answer is to figure out how to change your surroundings to bring them closer to the ideal. And if that's impossible (as it often is) the answer then is to subtly change yourself or your own expectations. The answer is never either to remain in oblivion or to remain in misery.

I do believe that you can be a thinking, aware, and yet happy person. It's all about the attitude you bring to your situation, and to life in general.

So do worry - do think - but be happy too!


At 6/30/05, 8:05 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


I don't like when people are cynicle either. What annoys me, is when people dwell on a specific site or article that upsets them. If they don't like it, they should look at something else.

At 6/30/05, 10:40 PM, Blogger Stx said...

Hmm...lemme guess. It's a philospher...that you learned in Columbia...I guess Kant.

Am I right? Hee hee! What's my prize???

At 7/1/05, 6:47 AM, Blogger Eli7 said...

You win, STX!
your prize is that I come all the way to your hicktown this shabbos!


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