I’m running a little Facebook competition at the moment, and people are entering by uploading their happiest face.

As picture comments slowly come in, I realised it might seem like a somewhat peculiar challenge for people, to upload a photo of their happiest face. So here is the explanation.

To choose to be purposefully happy is a big thing.

To focus for the amount of time it takes to take a happy selfy is no small task. You have to be happy. You have to commit to that moment. And for some of us, that is a huge challenge.

This meme captured my attention this weekend:


Image source unknown.

Image source unknown.

Big dose of truth, right there.

Because there is nothing more terrifying than battling with your own mind every single day. If you are fortunate, you’ve never danced with mental illness. Fortunate, and rare. And it takes a huge amount of determination and commitment and time and effort and energy and will and trying and failing and trying and failing to do each day. The fact that you got through another day? You are one badass mother fucker.

Relevance to a Facebook competition? Well. When every ounce and scrap of brain chemistry is convincing you that all is indeed lost, to find the intestinal fortitude to step to the side and snap a photo of your happiest face – that is some impressive stuff.

I can tell you that as a mental health consumer, the public system resources for people with mental health issues in Australia is stretched beyond what is reasonable. We’re at a point where mental maintenance is the result. Maintenance of coping. Maintenance of holding. Mental health seems to be a goal that is always somewhere over… there.

So you know what? I’m absolutely running a competition where people have to stop and be happy to enter. Because it just might be the only happy moment they get in their day.

If you reside in Australia you are welcome to enter. Actually, wherever you live, you are welcome to enter… you just won’t be able to receive a prize!

And if it is good enough for me to ask everyone to do it, here is my happy selfy. No editing, no filters, apparently no hair brush:

Image by The Naughty Corner

Image by The Naughty Corner

What makes you smile?



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