3 Small Happy Steps
1. I like sunshine. Not just a little bit. I love sunshine. When I made a list of things that made me happy ‘just because’ sunshine was the top of my list. I could bore you with facts about melatonin and serotonin or we could both accept that sunshine on my face makes me joyfully inexplicable happy. Whenever possible I made sure I got a bit of sun on my face, even if it involved running up to the roof of my office on a freezing November morning just because London, for once, had blue skies.
2. I love swimming and saunas. So, when I was on my way home from work and missing my ex so much the ache made me nauseous, I would get in the pool and swim the sadness off then lie in the sauna and let the heat kiss my aching soul better.
3. I missed France desperately so I started listening to French radio when I got home from work.
These small things, these dedications to myself became my foundations, they became my habits, they became my commitment to myself. They showed me not only that my happiness wasn’t dependent on the existence of another, but that the happiness I could build for myself, just by doing things I enjoyed, would eventually make me happier than I could ever have imagined as I drifted like a sedated mental health patient around the house of my poor old parents.
The Happy Ending
Neil Armstrong said that ‘Every man has a finite number of heart beats and I don’t intent to waste a single one of mine’. Now I feel the same way. Having my heart broken was without question my ultimate road to happiness. At the time I felt like I’d lost everything. In truth it was the beginning of me. As I sit here writing this, a published author, on a sunny mountain in France, a mountain where I could teach you to snowboard, I realise I have given myself a level of stability and contentedness I had never experienced before, with anyone. I have given myself roots, giant happy roots.