Claudia Osmond ~ Reader, Writer, and Ruminator


In ruminating on August 17, 2013 at 8:43 pm

This hashtag was floating around twitter a few weeks ago.


I don’t participate in these kinds of things too often, but I did this time. This is what I wrote:

I think Ian Somerhalder is ick. And Ryan Gosling is ew.

It was just one of those fun kinds of rib-poking comments that often fly between my daughter and me. Of course she replied, “You’re crazy.”

But if I had more than 140 characters to write a more thoughtful #unpopularopinion, it would have looked something more like this:

There are two popular schools of thought that I find are very unhelpful to all of humanity. This is popular thought #1:

YOU happy

It’s not, “Do what makes you happy.” It’s “Do what makes YOU happy.”

Do what makes YOU happy.

No matter what anyone thinks.

No matter what anyone says.

No matter what it makes anyone feel like.

No matter what

if it makes you happy

It doesn’t matter if what makes me happy makes someone else miserable, I will do it. It doesn’t matter if the thing I don’t want to do could be the very thing to help someone else, I won’t do it. Because if it makes me happy, I will. If it doesn’t, I won’t.

And you know what else? (popular thought #2)

self help

Even if I wanted to, I’m told I can’t truly help someone else anyway until I have helped myself and am happy, first. Self-love, self-care, self-nurture. I need love and care and nurturing, but I can’t help others until I provide for myself what I need.

Because I can’t give what I don’t have.

Except to myself.

It’s like this: Me, myself, and I will inhabit our little island and make OURSELF happy by providing for ourself what we don’t have. We will provide this for ourself by ourself; even though ourself doesn’t have it to give. Then, once we have given ourself enough of what we don’t have, maybe then we can consider sharing it with others.

It makes perfect sense. If you’re fluent in Gibberish. (ie: Amising I som I hisoming hing heretherethethere?. Translation: Am I missing something here?)



Do you know who the most unhappy people are? Those who live by the two popular thoughts above. I know. I’ve been there.

It. Doesn’t. Work.

But do you know what does? Living thoughts like this:


and this …


and this …


These thoughts don’t mean we should sacrifice our happiness for others’. They don’t mean we should make happiness about THEM instead of ME.

These thoughts mean we should take our pursuit of happiness and get off our island. They mean we should make happiness about US instead of ME.

The balance between looking out for myself AND others; that’s where happiness is found. Actually, striking that balance takes happiness to a new level and transforms it into DELIGHT. JOY. BLISS. FULFILLMENT. CONTENTMENT.

I know. I’ve been there, too.

And there is no translation for that in Gibberish.

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