I resolved early on to keep this blog limited to music-related posts - but really, music is about LIFE, isn't it? I also find that our outside-of-the-practice-room-lives can greatly affect our craft (I even wonder if people in love play differently than those that aren't!).
I've gotten to catch up with some people this summer, which has been great. One of my friends was describing his/her current personal life situation, and then admitted that he/she wondered, "Am I happy?" It was as if the matter was not his/hers to decide.
This got me thinking -does happiness only happen when a certain set of circumstances are in place, or is happiness a choice?
You can, on one hand, decide that, "I need A, B, and C to happen, and that will make me happy." Here we need to examine things we can change, and things we can't change. Take charge of the things you can change, and stop beating yourself up for things outside of your control. I've said before, be grateful for your experiences and abilities thus far, and don't regret what you haven't done yet or cannot currently do. You can change your circumstances more than you think, even if change cannot be immediate.
I firmly believe in going for your goals and not expecting anything to be handed to you on a silver platter. However, I also believe that you can decide to be happy no matter what. You just broke your ankle, your scholarship just got its funding cut, you've just gotten out of a bad relationship, or whatever issue is in your life that is coming down hard on you - if you say to yourself and the world today, "I'm happy anyways," is anyone going to tell you that you're wrong? Who else can decide but you? Now, this doesn't mean you're settling for your situation - you're still going to change whatever you can, but while you're there, you can be happy about doing so.
Let's stop comparing ourselves to others, and start comparing ourselves to our past selves to find improvement and gained knowledge.
Let's stop being complacent, and put things into motion.
Let's use our brains for more than is just necessary!
Let's allow ourselves to have time to properly mourn things that sadden or anger us, but let's allow ourselves to get back up, and deliberately contemplate what knowledge or strength we will/have gain/ed.
Let's consciously change our thinking - let's catch ourselves when we find we are having a pity party for ourselves in our heads, and snap out of it, and change our thoughts.
Let's take time to enjoy things that truly make our lives better and brighter.
And if there are bumps or roadblocks along the way, let's be happy anyways. We are all in training, we are all gaining strength.