/ How good do you think your life is?

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Blizzard - on 29 Oct 2012
Its 1pm. Just done a couple of hours work. Had enough for today. I dont have a mortgage. But I have a roof over my head. I dont have a pension. I work maybe one or two days a week. I eat out twice a week. I have a reasonable disposable income. I travel every other weekend. I have at least 5 holidays a year. I spend maybe 3 days a week at my partners (it varies on how I feel)

I dont have any family. No parents.

Do you think I have a good life? I often dont think I have but its nice when I'm told by others just how good Ive got it. So have I got it that good?
lynda - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard: are you happy? If yes, then you have a good life. If no, what can you change?

This is pretty much my mantra for living
Father Noel Furlong on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard:

You have it amazingly good. I never eat out, have a monster mortgage (although it is a pretty huge house which is nice), holidays - pah! I work 5 days a week in a soulless job which i hate. The only good thing about today is that i heard my mate has escaped and been promoted elsewhere. I have kids which mean i will soon be screwed by uni fees. However on the plus side i have family which is nice as i jost given a Merc as replacement for my old car - sweet.

You are a jammy jammy b****rd. Do you feel better now?
Blizzard - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Father Noel Furlong:

I drive an old Toyota Corrolla Diesel. I am content. I have moments of happiness. I forgot to mention I have a permanent mental disability. Its means I'm not like 'normal' people (what ever that means)

My girlfriend has a broken neck and is permanently in a wheelchair. (I havnt put these extra facts in to make anyone feel bad, they are just facts, thats all)

Just wondered what people would make of my life thats all.
Daithi O Murchu - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard:

yes you got it good

like most of use here in the west

that pension or lack of may dig into that well being a little bit as you get older

health money and some one you love to spend both of them on

mike kann - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard: Well it depends on whether you make the best out of the situation. Most "abled" people would kill to have your workload. At the end of the day life is what it is, and you have to deal with the hand you have and get as much positive out of life as you possibly can. Nobody has an easy life, they just have different problems and its how you deal with those problems that will make you happy or sad.
Blizzard - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to mike kann:

Ok. Now I will make you all feel jealous. I'm down the pub drinking a pint of Coracle. Great pint. I feel happy. Happiness is relative though. As a buddhist I kind of view the world differently to how I once did. Perhaps thats why climbing and traveling are no longer the central pillar it once was. I wondered if anyone would have been interested to read my life story. Its a roller coaster ride. I once thought I was special, but realise that many of my experiences many other people have had too. I can say I've had an amazing life, but Ive also been in the depths of despair I never want to plunge to again. (why am I telling everyone this stuff?)
jezb1 - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard: Just walking the dog on the beach and can see a couple of crags. The suns out and no work for a week.

House purchase currently proceeding without needing a mortgage.

A girlfriend who happily belays for hours on end.

Love my work. Plenty of time for climbing trips.

Life is good :)
Ben Sharp - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard: There's a difference between having it good and being happy. Most people in this country have it good and then everyone falls somewhere on the transient spectrum of happiness/despair. I'm not sure having it good has anything to do with where you fall on that spectrum.
Only a hill - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Ben Sharp:
Absolutely--sometimes it's easy to forget that every single person in the UK has a much higher standard of living than the majority of the population only a century ago.

We're living in a golden age, but don't always have the wisdom to see it.
EeeByGum - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard:

> Do you think I have a good life? I often dont think I have but its nice when I'm told by others just how good Ive got it. So have I got it that good?

I think the words here are "It ain't greener on the other side." You certainly seem to be in a position where no one is really dependant on you and you can please yourself. But then for me, there is something quite nice about supporting and looking after others even if it does somewhat tie you down. Maybe you need to ignore how others judge your life and seek the thing that makes you happy?
Blizzard - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Ben Sharp:

Thanks for that. We've ascertained I have it good. I am not depressed at the moment and am reasonably happy. Trouble is when I am happy I am manic, and people dont accept me. A lot of people steer away from happy people. Its all a matter of moods. I can remember people running a mile when I was happy. This country doesnt seem comfortable if you are OTT, happy, extorverted, talkative, unless you lucky to meet the right people. (whom drift in and out through your life, they are usually inadvertant meetings)
Ciro - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard:

On saturday evening, after an brillant day at the crag with good friends I posted on FB saying life really doesn't get any better than this. By sunday evening, when I couldn't walk, stand, sit or lie down without excruciating pain despite a cocktail of codeine, paracetamol and ibuprofen, having slipped a disk again, I wanted the world to end.

Despite being in tears from pain walking back from the doctors with a prescription and sign-off from work this morning, I've managed to remind myself that I was lucky to escape a wheelchair as a teenager, so every day I'm able to do the things I love (i.e. climbing) is a bonus and episodes like this are the exception rather than the rule.

I guess what I'm trying to say is it's all a question of perspective... I consider myself a pretty lucky guy to have the friends I've got and the opportunity to spend so much of my leisure time climbing, I just have to remind myself of that occassionally ;)
Blizzard - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to EeeByGum:

Despite the way I am, I am extremely sensitive to others opinions at times. My crap brain chemistry, I wont go into the details of my mental issues. Happiness is illusive. As a buddhist we are trapped in suffering, and any happiness is a simply a temporary lifting of our suffering. I've been brainwashed, and I cant see the world in the way I used to.
EeeByGum - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard: Perhaps not being a buddhist might be a way out, followed by a course of councilling? I have had some councilling and love the premise that we know all the answers to our questions, you just sometimes need a bit of help unearthing / discovering them.
Pete Ford on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard:

No one can say if your life is good or bad except you.

As a family we've got very little financially, and we live in a privately rented house after loosing ours at the beginning of the present financial crisis, but a few weeks ago my little lad said to his mum, "We may not have much money, but we've got loads of love"...that makes us richer and more satisfied with life than most I think.

Pete
Kemics - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard:

I've always thought that the Buddhist thing is a bit of a mis-translation about life "as suffering". I always thought "dissatisfaction" would be better.

Understanding and acceptance of that leads to satisfaction. I mean the Dalai lama doesn't exactly looked bummed does he? ;) You might be down, but it's certainly not because you're a buddhist :)
mike kann - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard: Im guessing if you are a part time manic and part time depressive then you have Bipolar? If that's the case I know from a friend how it can be very difficult to take her intensity at times to the point where you need to walk away. I don't think that's a reflection on whether I like her or not, but just that for us to be friends we need space too. It's always a rollercoaster of emotions... as regards you book, i guess it depends on what you feel you have to tell people. Sometimes reading about other peoples experiences with depression or mental health problems can really help and it makes you realise that you're not the only one, and that in reality everybody has a bit of it, whether they like to admit it or not.
Pyreneenemec - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard:

Likewise, I have no mortgage or other debts. I have a job that I enjoy, without that stretching to actual satisfaction. Holidays, week-ends, eat-well, a few gadgets; the list goes on. What I haven't suddenly got, is good health. I've always been in excellent health and led a very healthy lifestyle, yet despite that, I've been almost reduced to a wreck ! Before, I'd say that I had a good life, now, certainly not.

I'd really have to know just how much of a handicap your health problems cause, before I could pass judgement on your particular case.
EeeByGum - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Pete Ford:
> but a few weeks ago my little lad said to his mum, "We may not have much money, but we've got loads of love"...that makes us richer and more satisfied with life than most I think.

I love it! I hope you then gave he a sound thrashing for being such a soppy sentimental! :-)
Al Evans on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Kemics:
> (In reply to Blizzard)
>
> I've always thought that the Buddhist thing is a bit of a mis-translation about life "as suffering". I always thought "dissatisfaction" would be better.
>
> Understanding and acceptance of that leads to satisfaction. I mean the Dalai lama doesn't exactly looked bummed does he? ;) You might be down, but it's certainly not because you're a buddhist :)

Certainly when I was in Tibet the Buddhist monks I met were always smiling. I thought that considering their circumstances that had to say something about their religion, though I'm not sure what?
Timmd on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard:
> (In reply to EeeByGum)
>
> Despite the way I am, I am extremely sensitive to others opinions at times. My crap brain chemistry, I wont go into the details of my mental issues. Happiness is illusive. As a buddhist we are trapped in suffering, and any happiness is a simply a temporary lifting of our suffering. I've been brainwashed, and I cant see the world in the way I used to.

We can see the world how we choose to?

My perspective shifts about regarding human nature and how generous or un/selfish people are, but I know that it's mood dependent and related to how i'm feeling at the time.

I try and steer it towards the optimistic side, because I know i'm happier like that, and know that there is the goodness there, as well as the negativity, it's something of a choice I guess.

It's not that I don't know there's evil* so and so's out there and a lot of suffering, but it's not healthy (or logical) to think about it and not do anything constructive about it.

Our thoughts are the root of everything essentially, in that they colour how we live.

*They're not evil anyway really, they're just poeple who are suffering, but it can sometimes seem like they're evil.
Blizzard - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Timmd:

Is being positive a natural thing, cos naturally I'm a negative thinker and its not something I 'm proud of
Ridge - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Pyreneenemec:
I have a very good life, but as I get older I'm increasingly aware of how fragile a thing that is. There are a multitude of horrific things that could be round the corner, accidents, illness, disablity and finally old age. The only certain thing is it'll all eventually go to shit.

That's my cheery thought for the day.
Blizzard - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Ridge:

We certainly change , as we age dont we. I'm glad I am not alone having the thoughts I do. I wish some of your people were real as opposed to virtual...
Al Evans on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard: Could be worse, you could be living in New York :-)
Blizzard - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Al Evans:

Has that something to do with the impending hurricane? It will create lots of jobs in the building sector. AND people still deny global warming. Whats sadder is that as humans our behaviour is not changing...
Timmd on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard:
> (In reply to Timmd)
>
> Is being positive a natural thing, cos naturally I'm a negative thinker and its not something I 'm proud of

I've no idea. It won't do you any good to not feel proud about it though, that much I do know.

Have been through the mill myself a little bit, and self love and being kind to yourself, and confidence that it's good enough to just be doing your best seem like they're essential for making life more livable.

A while I learnt not to worry by deciding if I didn't know the future there was no point thinking about which bad things might happen.

You kind of need to question negative thoughts I think, and ask yourself whether you know them to be true, and if they're the whole story to life.

Essentially you need to love yourself I guess, it seems to help protect you against things which might happen.
Blizzard - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Timmd:

Love yourself.

Never.

Part of the problem I think.
Timmd on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard:
> (In reply to Al Evans)
>
> Has that something to do with the impending hurricane? It will create lots of jobs in the building sector. AND people still deny global warming. Whats sadder is that as humans our behaviour is not changing...

What can YOU do about it though, it's sad if you think about it, and it can make you sadder if you do, but does it change anything if you think of it? (:-))

You can do something about what you do though, and maybe inform other people.




Horatio on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard: Funnily enough I'm in a similar place at the moment. Also diagnosed with bipolar - I recently got DLA having not applied for it for many years although eligible. Tried and failed twice to get a degree, only making it as far as second year the first time. Things tend to start off well until the tedium, repetitiveness, stress and pressure get the better of me and I drop out (first one) or get ill (second one (twice)). I now have no assets or savings, no useful qualifications or work expirence and live off 90 quid a week with my mate in a 'I'll decorate your house if I don't have to give you any money' type deal. On the positive side I have no dept apart from student loans (which aren't loans at all, just a complicated tax bill) and one direct debit (10 pounds).

Like all the other times in my life where I've not had the burden of worrying about the future or locked into a boring routine I'm the happiest I've been. I guess other times would have been away from home on tour with the army or long travelling holidays. I worry about the morality of not working and living on benefits, I tell myself that most work is destructive, that unemployment is an unfortunate by-product of the capitalist system, that there's some other 30 year old dude with three kids and a mortgage down the road who needs it more (alas, my love life is a distant memory) and that I shouldn't feel obliged to do something I hate for 40 hrs a week as some kind of punishment for enjoying the ill luck to have been born! Despite all this I do feel guilty, I guess because everyone else has to do it and if I could 'cure' my bipolarism I wouldn't.

Since leaving the army I've worked at B&Q, Ellis Brigham, a factory making customised lorry bodies, pizza hut, many many building sites as a labourer, ran the least successful tiling business ever attempted (although it is still going, once or twice a year) and started 5 uni semesters (one foundation year, three first years and one second year). I know I couldn't have stuck at any of these jobs very long apart from maybe the lorry body one (which I got fired from) and am, apparently incapable of getting a degree.

So I now fill my time with my two restoration projects (the other being a vintage folding bike that'll probably be worth about 50 quid), grow my anti-psychotic medication under a HPS light, ride my bikes and go climbing when the weather's nice, argue and frighten folk with my shambolic over-amped rock band and scheme away on plans to eliminate future guilt (the latest being borrow 30 grand off my parents and become a property developer) once the first five year stint is over.
Blizzard - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Horatio:

Which part of the country do you live buddy? Maybe we oughta meet up? ( or is that a bad idea???)
Duncan Bourne - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard:
Got a good life, can't complain really
Duncan Bourne - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Horatio:
Excellent post. Honest and open. I like it
Tall Clare - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard:

Your life sounds pretty good but, as you and others say, it's about how you perceive it - a millionaire might be miserable and a pauper might see life's positives.

As for me - there are a couple of aspects of it that I think most sane people would run a mile from, but for the most part it's a great life, as whilst I don't currently have a pot to piss in, I do have my health, I live in a beautiful place, my work means I can enjoy the beauty round me, I have creative talents, I have a happy relationship with my partner... the pros outweigh the cons.
Nath93 - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard: Compared to some, pretty damn good. Compared to others, not so good. Ah well, i'm happy enough the way things are going, just got to get on with it at the end of the day !
Timmd on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard:

I've not said how my life is, in a lot of ways it could be better, like in finding somebody to love and a job, but i'm healthy and I like myself much more, am a bit concerned I might end up in a job I don't like, but I know to quite a large degree it's down to me how likely that is.

What is your job?
jolivague - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard: Great post.

For me life's about finding a moment, be it rolling along a country road on a crisp autumn morning and nobody else around, or hearing a completely new bit of music that makes the hairs on your neck stand up. Find enough of those and nothing else really matters.
Pete Ford on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to EeeByGum:


Too right!!

Pete
Richard Carter - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard:

I am real?
Caralynh - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard:

I have a great life really:

Personal: happily married
Property: nice house in the country, plus a house in the city we're trying to sell.
Finance: I'm in a very stable averagely paid job, he's in a fairly stable very highly paid job
Health: both in good health, and have private medical insurance just in case
Lifestyle: plenty of money for good food and wine, eat out once every few weeks, days out when we want. Limitation is only by the fact I work lots of weekends so climbing has taken a bit of a hit.
Family: both sets of parents still in fine fettle. I have an aged grandmother but at 93yrs you can't ask for more.
Holidays: holiday last year. Planning similar next which may be last before kids
Transport: I drive a 5yr old campervan, he has a 4yr old hatchback

Very very little to moan about really. OK I can moan about the amount of weekend/night shifts I have to do at the mo, and the fact my work is relocating to an hour commute next year. And the fact that we don't have as big a house or as much land as we'd like. And we don't have kids yet. And we don't get to the hills as much as we used to (weather/work). But all in all, we have no basis on which to whinge, really.
stroppygob - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard:

Personal: happily married one daughter (17) two dogs

Property: nice house in Aus, plus a house in Cornwall we rent to a local couple.

Finance: I'm in a very stable averagely paid job, my wife is in a very stable very highly paid job

Health: both in great health, and have private medical insurance just in case

Lifestyle: plenty of money for good food and wine, eat out once every few weeks, days out when we want. Limitation is only by the fact I work lots of weekends so climbing/paragliding has taken a bit of a hit

Family: both our fathers are deceased, both our mothers are well.

Holidays: Visit the UK for 6-8 weeks every other year, take 1-2 week breaks in Aus / NZ each year. Tend to use days up to follow the cricket. Go to Sydney for long weekends partying once a month. Go to Sydney Melbourne for gigs/shows/sports once every couple of months.

Transport: Due to our fine public transport system, we have only one car, a Subaru outback.

The only things above which are absolutely essential are the love of my wife and of my daughter.
lowersharpnose - on 29 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard:

I haven't read any other replies, so as not prejudice my answer.

You have a very comfortable life.

The most fundamental difference between you and me is "I don't have any family. No parents."

I have parents, children, nephews and nieces. I would not want to be without that web.

Is the life you describe enough for you?
Blizzard - on 30 Oct 2012
In reply to lowersharpnose:

Is the life I describe enough? Not sure. I spent many years constantly looking for a better life, abroad, constantly chasing things I thought would make me happy. Now I dont have the drive to even get out on the hill. The fact I will never have kids, nor parents really depressed me but how can you change your life circumstances. I have a sister who has disowned me and I cant even visit her. That is sad.

There are tracts of my life which I spend very much alone. I get through. I make the most of it. I am content. That is something. I have a relationship with someone who is severely disabled. I constantly look for something better there, but my experience with women over 40 has been that they want sex, no commitment. I just wanted to be loved, and I didnt even get that. Perhaps cos of my intensity. Most people cant handle it.

Am I happy? I am content, on an even keel at present. For me that is good. Its interesting that very few people have been perhaps open,honest enough to describe a life worse than mine. Is there a silent majority out there, or do I genuinely have it good. I have good friends, but still spend a lot of time in my own company. That can be fine as long as when I need my friends they are there for me.

Ive finally realised the importance of money in our society. Without that you really do struggle so in that respect at the moment I am OK. Planning travel trips to Istanbul and Nepal (dont want to travel their alone, but who else has the time and money, inclination to join me????? very few people have the freedom I currently have)
mike kann - on 30 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard: I can't say mine is worse but here goes:

I'm 35, had cancer at 25 but recovered after aggressive chemo. That resulted in years of me being pretty depressed, pretty much drifting from not working, to trying to climb to not working very much, to trying to forge a new company which currently doesn't yield a salary of working in Mc Donalds despite my masters degree in engineering and a lot of hard work. My dad died a few years ago, my mum has recently massive heart problems, one of my sisters has bipolar and wont admit it or get help, so we hardly speak, the other sister gets on well but lives in new zealand. I have an aunt who I'm pretty certain has a severe case of Narcissistic personality disorder and makes what should be a fantastic resource, namely a chalet in the alps, into a horrific ball and chain around our necks which we basically dont use to its potential because we can't face it.

On the other hand, I live in a great village with lots of good friends, have a great partner with whom I'm having a kid and I'm finally not depressed any more and know that somehow I'll be OK. Currently I haven't got a pot to piss in money wise but it doesn't matter. Of course more would be good, but I'm pretty happy anyway...
Goucho on 30 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard: Loosing any credibility I might have by quoting Ronan Keating, "Life is a Roller Coaster"

Sometimes it's great, sometimes it's shit, and both are relative to what we have experienced - not being able to have a holiday might not be considered shit, compared to someone who spends their day foraging on a landfill site for breakfast. By the same token, being able to afford a couple of weeks in the alps each year, might not seem so fantastic to Richard Branson.

At the moment my life is great. I've got a fabulous wife (who is also my best friend and soul mate) 3 fabulous kids all doing well at Uni, semi-retired with a few bob in the bank, and living in a beautiful house in a brilliant part of the world. I'm even climbing well at the moment too.

5 years ago, every aspect of my life was a tram crash, and if it wasn't for my kids, I might well have gone over the edge.

Life is always fragile, and you never know what is round the corner, so I never take anything for granted - just appreciate things when they're going well.

Sometimes, you need to experience the 'downs' in order to fully appreciate the 'sweet taste' of the 'ups'.

Timmd on 30 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard:Pssst! What is your job? Please share, you're right about the importance of money in this society, it sucks a bit.
Blizzard - on 30 Oct 2012
In reply to Timmd:

I'm a tree surgeon and gardener. Self employed on and off.
Timmd on 31 Oct 2012
In reply to Blizzard:
> (In reply to Timmd)
>
> I'm a tree surgeon and gardener. Self employed on and off.

Thanks. Have you thought about seeing a therapist through an organisation like Mind?

I don't feel like i'm exagerating in saying seeing one of thier therapists for free changed my life for the better.

I don't suppose it'd help your bi-polar, but it possibly might help you learn to like/love yourself more?

Hope i've not posted out of turn at all. I found my time with Mind really helpfull.

The process was sometimes painfull, from exploring personal things, but overall it was helpfull.

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