I’ve been going to my happy place a lot lately.
My happy place is that made-up place in my mind. The place that makes me feel relaxed and at one with the world. I first started going there in group yoga classes. Some of the teachers would ask us to visualize our happy place as part of the meditation at the end.
In those days, it was hard for me to get to my happy place in the allotted time. There were a lot of decisions to be made. My thoughts would go something like this:
Okay, so happy place. Let’s go to a beach. Wait, that is waaaaayyy too clichéd. Think of something else. A forest? What else is warm and nice. F*ck it, go to a beach. Which beach? Oh I saw one in that magazine…what magazine was it? Oh nevermind. Just visualize a beach. Small or large? Okay small. Wait, I need an umbrella or I’m gonna fry. I hope there’s someone around to bring me a coconut…
You get the idea. My happy place wasn’t well-formed. And since I would only go there once in a while, when asked, it was the same struggle every time. It wasn’t a very relaxing place because I never took the time to set it up properly. Kind of like my first few apartments.
Then about two years ago, I went to a meditation center. I was asked to visualize my happy place for a long time. So I took the time to really set it up. It’s different now. It’s no longer a beach. I know how to get there and back in the most comfortable way possible. I know what I’m wearing when I get there. I know how it smells there and what it feels like to breathe the air there. I know where to get snacks. There’s room for a companion or two if I wish but I can also go there alone.
So now my happy place is like a vacation I can get to immediately. No airports, no taxis and no decisions. No hassles whatsoever.