Today is my “long” day.  I have classes at 10:00, 1:00, 2:30 and 5:30.  Which means I’ll be in class for about six hours today, and I won’t get home until around 7:45. 

If I think about that too much, it will start to effect my happiness level.  It’s not that class itself makes me sad- it’s mostly knowing how the day is going to turn out before it actually does that leads to melancholy.  If variety is the spice of life, Tuesdays tend to be a giant bowl of boiled cabbage.

As of now, I have two techniques that I use to combat the dreariness of Tuesdays.  One is to try not to focus on the near future, but simply on what is happening at the moment.  Each moment is unique in and of itself, even if the larger picture appears to be the same time and time again.

Last night, for example, I took maybe 25 photographs of one cat.  Each one was different.  Some were similar, but each one showed the creature in a different light or slightly different pose. 

Tuesdays are no different- they seem monotonous, but each one holds mystery and magic waiting to be discovered.  Part of overcoming my mental block about today is realizing this and spending my time searching for the ways the day is different.

Secondly, it helps to realize that I chose to run this academic gauntlet on Tuesdays.  Scheduling all of my classes on only two days has its advantages- I am able to work more on the days I have off.  If my classes were spread out in a more traditional format, I would have to rush back and forth to work and constantly check the time.  That would be bothersome, to say the least.

One day I was watching an episode of Dora the Explorer with my niece and was tickled by the ridiculously easy choices it offered kids.  For example, at one point she asked the audience to choose between two paths- one was blocked by an obviously hungry crocodile, whereas the other one was clear and lined with pretty flowers.  It was a simple decision.

Life doesn’t typically work out that way.  Each choice we make often has both good and bad ramifications.  We make the best choice we can with the information we’re given, and then go from there.  It does us no good to look back with remorseful hindsight and wish we’d done things differently.  Our only option is to maximize the good benefits of our decision while dulling or redirecting the negative aspects as much as possible.

So, I could spend the day bemoaning my self-chosen fate, or congratulate myself on making the right choice while realizing that certain parts of that choice necessarily put me in a tough situation for a few hours a week.  Then I can attempt to experience each moment, instead of tuning out and unconsciously painting a glum wash over the whole day and going to sleep tired and unhappy.

Seems like a pretty straightforward choice- I think I’ll avoid the crocodile.


2 Responses

  1. I’m enjoying the blog, especially after today. I have one more day of the bar and then i’m heading to the real bar. You need to get me an email address that I can actually get in touch with you. Email me at

  2. This is a great post! You describe how to find happiness in the little moments (which are the ones that usually pass us by so easily) – so even if the day is just a “blah” day, you can still find little nuggets of joy. I am trying….I am.

    Of course, living with you is always joyful 🙂

    your wife 🙂

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