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There's No Bliss Here Today, and That's Okay

December 12, 2022 Joanna Satterwhite

This is my fourth attempt at writing a post today, and it'll be a miracle if it's my last. Since waking up this morning, I've started three different articles on three different topics, only to give up each after just a few sentences. Nothing was ringing true. So, I've decided to write about the only thing that does feel true, which is that today, I don't have much to say about bliss. I feel no bliss. 

Feeling No Bliss Is Triggering Imposter Syndrome 

Writing a blog about bliss has forced me to closely examine a lot of my own assumptions about what it means to be happy and live a good life. When I accepted this blog contract with HealthyPlace, I felt like I needed to write out of some kind of authority. Other blog authors were writing from lived experiences with diagnoses or mental health challenges. I felt I needed to match this by acting as some bastion of positive psychology.

Over the past few months, though, it's come to my attention—again—that I'm just an average Jo(e). Sometimes I'm really happy, and sometimes I'm really not. I've sobbed on the floor at least once a week for the past month, and I've also spent hours staring at one ceiling or another and feeling nothing at all. This is par for the course for me, especially during the long nights of winter when my self-diagnosed seasonal affective disorder kicks in and has me dragging; and, at first, this made me feel like an imposter.

What can I possibly offer to a discussion of bliss when half of the time, I feel nothing in particular? What can I write about when, as often as not, no thought crosses my mind about happiness, misery, or anything in between? 

Trying and failing this morning to write something insightful, I realized what a glaring error this kind of thinking is. Bliss isn't some gated community where inhabitants fart rainbows and live in technicolor every second of the day. I'm beginning to think bliss is nothing more than perfect acceptance.

Technicolor days, days without a flicker of light or warmth, days so bland and average that nothing is worth saying about them--all of these comprise the human reality. Perhaps bliss is the peace that rises when you realize that one kind of day rolls into the next and on and on. As a nominal "authority" on the blissful life, I'd be doing you a disservice if I hid my blank spaces. So I've decided not to. I've decided to tell you about them.

Radical Acceptance Helps When There's No Bliss to be Felt

I'm not worried. Depth of emotion comes and goes, and I trust entirely it will come again. When it does, I promise to tell you about it, whether it's miserable or fantastical. Until then, I'll leave you with this lesson that today has taught me: it's okay to feel not much. It doesn't mean you're dissociated, apathetic, or straying from the good life. It doesn't mean anything at all. Accept it at face value, and don't think twice.

It's a dreary day here in Georgia. Rain is dripping from a slate sky like a leaky pipe, and the temperature is, unfortunately, seasonal. Winter seems, finally, to have arrived—the season of pause. For the rest of the day, I'll take it as such. I'm not going to try to hack my way into feeling brighter, not going to try to pry anything out of myself that doesn't gently step forward. I suggest you do the same.    

Tags: no bliss

APA Reference
Satterwhite, J. (2022, December 12). There's No Bliss Here Today, and That's Okay, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2023, December 6 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/livingablissfullife/2022/12/theres-no-bliss-here-today-and-thats-okay



Author: Joanna Satterwhite

Joanna is a writer and teacher based in Atlanta. Find her on Substack and Instagram

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