Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Yes. I'm Happy.

Dear Readers,

I'm happy.

I'm not happy all of the time. I have a down day now and again. Usually, when I have a down day, it's not caused by any one issue. Or any one person. In fact, I often have a hard time putting a finger on it. I know that it won't last long. I know that it's not within my emotional control (ladies, you understand). And I know that it's not who I am.

Because fundamentally, to my core, I am happy.

In my Savvy Auntie Editor's Letter this week, entitled: My Own Happiness (August 9, 2009) , I write about how once I reached 40 and didn't have the things expected of a happy woman (marriage and children) that I would be unhappy.

But a funny thing happened on the way to turning 40. I became happy.

Here's why. Two years ago, I set out to live life to my potential. Two years ago, I decided to stop resisting my life because of what was not happening TO me. Just a month before I decided to start my own company, I told a friend offering me a part of his business to run, that I had to focus on getting married and having kids, not starting a business.

Just ONE MONTH before I decided to start Savvy Auntie I said NO to a creative opportunity handed to me. Handed to me!

What changed in one month? What changed was that I became determined to no longer struggle for a life that was not happening TO me, and began embracing the life I could create.

In essence, I got a life. My life.

My lesson for you, Dear Reader:

Do what you love, and you will always have success. Do what other people would love you to do, and you will always have regrets.

And here's the bonus! I had no IDEA that creating a life of potential would give me happiness. I imagined working as hard as I have for the last two years and not dating as much as I'd prefer. I imagined not being able to afford the clothes and shoes I used to buy. I imagined not eating out anywhere near as much, and not taking vacations.

What I imagined was right.

I work very hard. And yet, even with the most challenging of tasks, I know that each step I take is going up the ladder of my potential.

I don't date much. In a good way. I've become more selective; I don't date where I don't see potential or at least some fun. It's empowering to choose whom you date and not let the dates choose you.

I can't afford to buy the clothes and shoes that I love (my revenue goes back into my business/dream/potential). And by NOT buying these materialistic things, I am MORE fulfilled. I don't need them to feel confident anymore.

I don't eat out nearly as much as I used to. And when I do, it's often to eat alone. I treat myself to breakfast, lunch or dinner and a good book so that I can regroup, refocus and show myself some gratitude.

I don't take vacations to Europe or the country. Instead, I take day trips to clear my head, or get inspired. I don't miss packing and flying and sleeping in hotel rooms.

The one thing I did imagine that did not come true was happiness. I did believe I'd be happy. But I didn't know that happiness would no longer be a state of mind. It would be part of my spirit. Happiness would be so indelibly tied to my heart and soul that I would not and could not imagine my life any other way.

It's my happiness. It's the only happiness I have ever known.

It's the only happiness that has even known me.

We're still getting to know each other, my happiness and I - like an identical twin separated at birth. She knows me better than I know myself.

I'm beginning to trust she's never going away.

And dare I say it, she's beautiful.

Auntie Melanie


  1. This is something I think about a lot, particularly when confronted with friends who are perpetually unhappy.

    Happiness is a decision you make at some point in your life. Its a choice.

    It isn't situational, it isn't reliant on circumstance or luck. It just is. Happy people can find their happiness in the face of all manner of misery. Unhappy people see the cloud in every silver lining.

    I'm glad you chose happiness!

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  3. What a great article! It's such a great feeling when you find your 'happy place'. I'm currently researching starting my own business and this definitely makes me want to make it happen quicker!

    Anonymous: didn't your mother tell you if you don't have anything nice to say don't say anything at all. If that's how you feel, then why do bother reading the blog.

  4. Thanks, Ami! I am glad this helped you out!

  5. (a comment above was deleted due to profanity.)

  6. Well put, Savvy Auntie! Happiness reigns supreme when we let it. Granted, some times and some situations require that we work a LOT harder at it than others, but happiness is a choice. May we all choose wisely! :)

  7. What an awesome blog. What you have to say I think speaks to lots of people including myself. We are very different, yet the things you write about are spot on to what I am thinking and feeling in my own search for happiness.

  8. "Do what you love, and you will always have success. Do what other people would love you to do, and you will always have regrets."

    You are so right. This is so true. You've captured my personal beliefs on life in just 2 sentences. And now I want to share it with everyone I know. Thanks for always being inspiring!

  9. That is awesome Melanie. Good for you and thank for being an inspiration!

  10. Thank you, Melanie, for sharing your thoughts. You have done a wonderful thing by setting up this well-needed website! Thank you for providing me with an outlet to share my thoughts, etc. and for allowing me to know that I'm not alone in my auntiehood. Keep rockin', girl!


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