Canadians always complain about the weather. No matter what time of year it is. In winter, we get ‘It’s too cold,’ ‘wow is it ever damp outside,’ and ‘I hate the lack of sunshine.’ Yet when we come around to the exact opposite weather, we get summer complaints of ‘It’s so hot outside, it’s uncomfortable,’ ‘It’s too humid, it feels sticky,’ and ‘There’s too many bugs.’ The only happy medium for us is a 20 degree clear day with a slight breeze and moderate humidity, though I’m sure someone would find fault with it. Complaining is fine once in awhile, we are all guilty of it on some level, and it serves the purpose of relating with others. If we both hate winter, we can connect with each other. There are better ways to do this, but this is better left for another post, so I digress. It’s when we use our complaints as excuses to not do something that it becomes toxic.
I know people who complain about winter for three months and then continue to stay inside when its warm because of bugs or uncomfortable humidity. If there’s one thing I’ve learned about the outdoors, its that I always feel better when I decide to go out into the world, regardless of the weather.
As it turns out, this is a good example of what we do all the time. We make excuses for why we can’t do something that feels difficult to us, even though we would be really happy and fulfilled if we did it anyway. Sometimes we know that going and doing something would be incredibly beneficial down the road, yet we still make the excuse because not doing it is easier and makes us feel good right now.
We do this because ultimately we don’t know what we really need to make us happy. We are always in the habit of instant gratification. We have constant bombardment from a world that tells us we would be happy if we just got that shiny new thing, or ate this, or watched that, RIGHT NOW!
So what is the answer? How do we choose the right thing to do?
I know two things for sure: What makes you happy and what makes me happy aren’t going to be exactly the same, but taking a risk, trying something new, trying something different, getting out in the world, and seeking experiences – That’s universal for happiness and fulfilment.
So stop making excuses and go outside!