美文选刊|不应相信的幸福神话

摘要: 幸福在哪里啊,幸福在哪里,幸福就在……

10-12 16:13 首页 英语世界


Myths About Happiness Everyone Should Stop Believing

不应相信的幸福神话

文/梅甘·布鲁诺   译/郑淑明 周鸿雁

By Megan Bruneau


Happiness is a serious moneymaker. People around the world spend hundreds of billions of dollars trying to avoid the tough stuff and feel good about themselves, whether that’s through prescription[1] pills, going crazy with dieting and fitness, or that time-tested elixir[2] of life: alcohol.

幸福是棵正儿八经的摇钱树。世界各地的人们花费数千亿美元来躲避难关、寻求快乐,要么服用处方药、疯狂节食和健身,要么求助久经考验的长生不老药——酒精。

[1] prescription 处方药。

[2] elixir 长生不老药;灵丹妙药。

 

As a psychotherapist[3] who helps people bump their overall happiness level up[4] a few notches[5], I’ve heard pretty much[6] all of the myths out there about happiness. The worst part is that these myths actually make you unhappy (messed up, right?)—so ditching them is, paradoxically, part of finding happiness.

作为心理治疗师,我帮助人们提升整体幸福的层次。我几乎听说过所有关于幸福的神话。而最糟糕的是,这些神话其实会让你不幸福(乱了,是吗?)——所以,摆脱这些神话,反而是寻找幸福的一部分。

[3] psychotherapist 心理治疗师。

[4] bump up 抬高,增大,提升。

[5] notch 等级,水平。

[6] pretty much 〈口〉几乎,差不多。


 

When you achieve [whatever goal you’re going after], you’ll be happy

实现了(你追求的目标),你就会幸福

 

Land the promotion, the spouse, the Lambo[7], the goal weight, the condo[8], whatever it is—you’ll finally experience eternal happiness. Hey, it’s not your fault for believing this, since you’ve likely been fed the American dream since the moment you escaped from the womb.

无论是职务晋升、寻得伴侣、购得跑车、体重达标,还是拥有公寓——实现了,你就会感受到无限的幸福。嘿,相信这种神话并不是你的错,因为你一出生就被灌输了这种美国梦。

[7] Lamborghini 的缩写,跑车品牌兰博基尼。

[8] condo 公寓。

 

But this logic is flawed. Achievements don’t protect you from feeling like crap[9], and they definitely don’t make you superhuman. Multimillionaires still get depressed. People with “perfect” bodies still get dumped. Steady, passive income[10] doesn’t protect you from losing someone to cancer. If you can start appreciating where you are, rather than basing your sense of fulfillment on some future accomplishment, you’ll be much closer to happiness. 

但它的逻辑漏洞百出。即使取得各种成就,也并不会让你感觉良好,更绝对不会让你变成超人。百万富翁也会有心情抑郁的时候。拥有“完美”身材的人也会失恋。稳定、被动的收入不会保证你身边的人不因癌症去世。如果你能开始欣赏目前的处境,而不是依赖还未实现的某项成就带来的满足感,你就会离幸福更近。

[9] crap 废物。

[10] 即不需要花费时间和精力就可以自动获得的收入。


 

When you find the right person, you’ll be happy

遇到了对的人,你就会幸福

 

If you think being in a relationship[11] is necessary for happiness, you’re going to feel inadequate[12] and probably anxious when you’re single. There’s no doubt a strong relationship can make your life better in a lot of ways, but it’s certainly not a requirement. In fact, many people feel lonelier and more disconnected in a relationship than outside of one.

如果你认为只有谈恋爱才能幸福,那你会在单身时感到空虚,还很可能感到焦虑。毫无疑问,一段良好的恋爱关系能在很多方面让你的人生更棒,但这并不是必要条件。事实上,相比起单身,很多人在恋爱中感到更加孤独、更加与世隔绝。

[11] in a relationship 与某人在一段关系中,即恋爱中。

[12] inadequate 不够的;能力不足的。

 

When you’re unhappy, it’s natural to blame your relationship status, but try not to—instead of waiting for your “soulmate” to bump into you like your life is a John Cusack[13] movie, see if there are other ways to meet your needs. You know, ways that are in your control. 

当你感到不幸福,你会很自然地怪罪于情感状态,但是,请不要这样做,而要想其他办法满足你的需要,而不是等待你的“灵魂伴侣”突然出现在你面前,毕竟你的人生不是约翰·库萨克的电影。要知道,方法就在你的掌控中。

[13] 约翰·库萨克,美国演员、编剧、制片人。

 

…………

 

Being happy means you’ll never feel like crap

感觉幸福意味着永远不会心情糟糕

 

It’s no coincidence that a lot of these myths are clichés[16] from fairytales, and nowhere is that more evident than humankind’s steadfast belief in happy endings. No! Not that kind!

许多这样的神话都是来自童话故事的陈腔滥调,这绝不是巧合——没有什么比人们对美好结局的向往更坚定。不!可不是那么回事!

[16] cliché 陈腔滥调。

 

The “happily ever after” stuff just isn’t real. To be human is to feel, and it’s a guarantee that you’ll feel disappointment, loss, anger, guilt, sadness, fear, conflict, embarrassment, frustration, and so on and so on. These feelings are universal; happiness is about being able to make space for ALL these shitty emotions, not just the positive ones. They’re not a sign of brokenness or pathology. They mean you’re not a robot or a psychopath[17]

“幸福永存”之类的话根本就是假的。人生在世就是要体验。你肯定会体验到失望、失落、愤怒、愧疚、悲伤、恐惧、矛盾、尴尬、挫折,等等。这些情绪人皆有之;幸福是能够包容所有这些糟糕情绪,而不仅仅是那些积极的情绪。这些情感不是衰弱或者病态的象征,而是意味着你不是机器人或者精神病人。

[17] psychopath 精神病患者,精神变态者。

 

…………

 

So, the next time you find yourself seeking happiness, double-check to make sure you’re not looking in all these wrong places.

所以,下次发现自己在寻找幸福的时候,要反复确认——是否在这些方面出了问题。


(节选自《英语世界》2017年第9期)



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