I'm on the pursuit of happiness, and it's really not that hard to find. Here's a list of 25 small things that make absolutely any day, a million times better.
I've read a few articles on small towns and some statistics show that 20-30% of Americans live in small towns and 80% of the nation's population lived in one of the 350 combined metropolitan statistical areas.
After growing up in a small town myself, I think it can sometimes be difficult to be the person you want to be while trying to please all of your small-town fans. This is the first time in my life I've moved away from my small town with the intention to stay away for a very long time.
Why would I do something so silly?
Over the past two years, I realized how my hometown was stopping me from growing and accomplishing my dreams. Hanging out with friends generally became a gossip session because we were together so often and had nothing more to talk about. Neighbors knew where I was or who I was with. There was always some type of pressure to please everyone. There has always been someone to compare my life to or to be like.
Finally, I realized how detrimental this mentality was to my success.
After a series of events this year, I finally gathered the courage to pick up my life and move somewhere where I was a “no one." Somewhere where I could start fresh and never have to worry about pleasing someone down the street. I can vouch that this has been the biggest change in my life and the best possible move I could have made.
So what things actually change?
1. You find out who your true friends are.
This one will shock you. Remember that person you used to go to dinner with or spent countless nights finding a party or get together to go to with? That person magically fades away. The convenience of you being down the road is no longer an option and that person has now found a new acquaintance who has replaced you. Your genuine friends will continue to invite you to be a part of whatever and most will plan to spend time with you or come see you.
2. You no longer have a close-minded perception of everything.
I remember going to a grocery store and hearing the small town gossip from aisle to aisle. I remember how one-sided most issues were and if you weren't on board, your opinion was irrelevant. Now I can go to the store and not know a single person and have an opinion about anything I want and not have to worry about being shunned.
3. You suddenly turn into a mystery.
This one is great. People will start wondering where you went or what you've been up to. When I call my parents, I always get a good laugh from the conversations they've had with others who wonder what I'm up to. My favorite quote that relates to this is, “The less you reveal, the more people can wonder."
4.You are suddenly a nobody in your new community, and it's great.
I have a bad habit of trying to avoid people I know, so when I go into stores or do anything in public, I love being a nobody. I love being able to do all of my grocery shopping without being interrupted or asked about school.
5. You appreciate the small hometown things more.
I'm not going to lie, I cringe thinking about making a trip home, but that pizza place I had four times a week and those margaritas that my friends and I would gulp down when celebrating everything from a birthday to making it through a rough day at work suddenly become luxury items. You enjoy those country cruises and those salty fries so much more when you're away.
6. You start to find yourself.
I left this one for last because it's by far the most important thing that's happened to me. I got stuck thinking I needed to be married by 22 and have a family by the time I was 27. I no longer think this. I finally have a bucket list that involves so much more than beating my best friend in a keg stand at the annual town bonfire. I have found who I am through solely relying on me and the things that make me happy.
SEE ALSO: 8 Things You Realize After High School
Don't get me wrong, I love my hometown. It's made me who I am today, but even if it's only for six months, escape your small town. Get away and experience the world. Don't wait until it's too late. It's great out here!
Do you ever scroll through your Instagram and get aggravated by how amazing the pictures are? Or get aggravated by how perfect the people are….. Or how joyful the people seem to be in the pictures displayed? All these questions build up and make you wonder why your life isn't as cheerful as those figures seen on social media. Well, every time I view Instagram on my devices, all I see are perfect images and perfect moments captured. I often wonder why MY life isn't as impeccable and why I'm am not having as terrific of a time as the pictures seem to portray.
Thoughts bubble up in me, and I find myself asking: is this how everyone really feels, or is it just me?
I've come to the conclusion that people who post cheerful and seemingly admirable pictures on social media are the ones who are deceiving themselves and fooling me along with. If the moment was so tremendous, why was there a phone out? If the moment was so wonderful, why did they choose to take a picture of it instead of immersing themselves at the moment? Was it certainly a perfect time? No. Then it genuinely wasn't the time of your life.
The picture seeks to depict the time as perfect, but that wasn't what actually occurred. In reality, the people would have been crying or just sitting around the whole time, but in that exact split second of the picture, they were able to display a flawless image that people who scroll through Instagram desire to experience with their friends.
After experiencing moments that people capture on a mobile device at parties and casual hangouts, I have come to a realization that not only do people deceive others by faking happiness on social media, but they also deceive others into thinking their life is outstanding. In that picture perfect moment, it wasn't as joyful and valuable as it seemed to be.
The only thing they did was take pictures to depict a favorable time, but was it REALLY a breathtaking occasion or did you just take pictures to make it seem as if you did? The picture was taken to allow others to view it as the best time ever and have others believe you had fun. You would definitely say it was fun, but in reality, all you did was take pictures to make it seem fun.
It is insane to think about the countless times a person goes through their feed feeling upset about their life by simply viewing someone's picture and assuming they are having "the time of their life." They don't even think about how the amazing picture is, but the moment wasn't.
This must come to an end. Though some people would argue and say they want to share aesthetic and pretty pictures on their social media, Instagram isn't for this. The purpose for Instagram is to post pictures with friends and family along with funny memes to keep Instagram lively, though Instagram isn't being used in this context. People need to essentially begin living in the moment instead of worrying about getting an Instagram picture. It isn't worth the hassle.
If you aren't truly having fun in life then what do you have to show off? Why not genuinely enjoy the moment, and worry about capturing a picture or two later? It is crazy to think about how people only care about how others view them. They don't care about how they view themselves or whether they are fulfilling their happiness. This society is definitely based on a sense of belonging, of being accepted into the community.
At the same time, people viewing these images begin to lose self-esteem because of the flawless group of friends they see on their Instagram feed. The thought of making yourself happy and enjoying the moment is diminishing as people begin to deceive their happiness. So, let me ask again: is the fun shown on Instagram reality, or is it just a deceptive fantasy?