Friday, June 18, 2010

The Dark Side of Hedonism

A couple years ago I took a "Values Test" at work that revealed my top priority in life is pleasure. Lots of different things fall under this value umbrella—family, friends, writing, hiking, cheese, Mr. Wonderful. I am happiest when I'm experiencing something a little decadent. And I try to make it a point to add a little decadence to my life every day.

I'm lucky because the work I do 40 hours a week generally gives me great pleasure. I love not only being creative but also organizing information, thoughts, and elements on a page.

I indulge my love of chocolate and cheese and wine almost nightly.

I spend time with Mr. W and my family and friends often because they make me smile and feel more connected.

I hike and run regularly because I adore the scenery and the endorphins.

I'm pretty much a joy junky.

But this week, I was reminded (as I am every few months) of the ugly side of my hedonistic attitude. When mama doesn't get her fill of pleasure, mama wants to punch people in the face.

All it takes is a little too much miscommunicating and mucking with my workload to leave me gasping for good stuff on the job. Throw in an apartment that needs cleaning, a couple loads of laundry, two days' worth of dirty dishes, upcoming social engagements that require shopping trips and an oil change light that keeps blinking at me, and my pleasure receptors start wailing like banshees.

Oscar the Grouch has nothing on me.

Thankfully, I found that even 20 minutes of writing or exercise can get me back on track. I'm like any other addict, I guess—I just need a little pleasure hit to take the edge off and then I can continue functioning like a semi-normal human being.

I suppose there are worse ways to be. I'd rather be a glutton for bliss than a devotee of misery.


dingo said...

Everyone should have a little decadence every day. I'm glad you've found a way to make it a part of your every day life. I'm particularly fond of the wine and cheese.

laura said...

I was with you until you noted shopping in a negative way....then you lost me.

Anonymous said...

Wow, if punching people in the face is your reaction to the occasional bad day, I sure hope you never dip into the harder stuff!

Danielle said...

Nothing wrong with that if you can get back on track so quickly and easily. I wish it were that easy for me! :)

Nilsa @ SoMi Speaks said...

When mama doesn't get her fill of pleasure, mama wants to punch people in the face.

I can't wait until you're pregnant one day. Oh my.


Janice MacLeod said...

I know some devotees of misery. I look at them and think, "You should hear yourself!" then I flee. I'm a joy junky, too. Nice to know there are others like us.