Intelligence and the gift

I came across a brief video online today about the 6 things that prevent intelligent people from being happy. Of course, considering myself a smart person, I watched it. It was less than a minute long, because, come on now. There’s no way we’ve got time in our busy lives to watch something much longer than a minute.

Anyway, the following things are what this video (substantiated by unknown sources):

  • Overthinking
  • Having high standards
  • Being hard on oneself
  • Reality isn’t enough (always looking for meaning, lessons, or purpose)
  • Feeling alone or misunderstood
  • Higher IQ’s have been linked to psychological issues like anxiety and depression

So of course, since I’m an intelligent person, all of these things resonate with me. I am notorious for basically every single thing on this list. But the question is, does it inhibit my happiness to a certain degree? You betcha. All the time.

I agonize about virtually all aspects of my life, internally and externally. It’s an impossible position. I can never be good enough, nor can anyone else. Every single misstep, I turn it over and over and over and over in my mind. All the things that I should have said differently, done differently. Every bit of it. It’s extremely stressful to be human. I feel as though it cannot possibly be just me who does this. Other people, regardless of intellect, MUST have a similar human experience, right?

I watched another brief video the other day about sacrifice versus “giving”. For instance, giving your time to a cause that you feel passionate about is a gift. But feeling obligated to go to a function because it’s expected of you is sacrificing your happiness or your desires, which is placing you as a victim, rather than a benefactor of your time and energy. This also struck a chord with me. I often find myself in situations in which I feel pressured to attend or to do something that I’m not particularly interested in. Like going to a birthday party where I am going to be ignored by the hosts because other guests are “more demanding” and require doting, where I will not know anyone else, or the other attendees are generally unpleasant to me.

Attending this party feels forced. I’m not going to enjoy myself, and the other people around me aren’t going to be enjoying my presence. It’ll be awkward and lame for us all. However, because I feel guilty and other people place blame on me for “not supporting” the person who’s birthday it is. So I go to the thing. I sit there quietly, until it’s acceptable for me to quietly bow out. This is sacrificing my time, my energy, and my dignity, since I am a grown-ass woman who cannot set and maintain healthy boundaries with people.

Meanwhile, the same weekend there’s another birthday party. This party I’m excited about. This one is for a person that I really enjoy spending time with. I also like their family, who will also be attending. These folks like me and my family. We can sit and bullshit for hours and I love it. I literally cannot get enough of this group of people. This is a gift. I’m receiving a gift by attending. I get the gift of surrounding myself with people who appreciate my presence not only at their party, but also in their lives. Not only do they bring value to my life, but I theirs.

Being of value is something that I personally hold very dear. I don’t buy things that I do not need, because the things I purchase must bring value to my life. They must be useful and enrich my life in some way. I feel the same about the people in our lives. If they don’t enrich us and make us better people, they are a sacrifice, not a gift. Constantly sacrificing for the sake of others leaves us hollow shells. It does not give us the opportunity to enrich the lives of others or to bring value to those around us. We cannot share our gifts, and that is a shame indeed.

Sunrise

4:45am

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~ by wendemachete on June 22, 2017.

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