My grocery store clerk asked me how I was doing today. I told him how I was really doing - excellent - and asked how he was. The clerk's response never changes. He always says that today has been a pleasant one. His response never changing tells me he is saying something pleasant to move the conversation along or, he is always just pleasant (I think he's just trying to be easy and optimistic).
I have made a goal to always answer that question honestly and openly. I figure why beat around the bush for the sake of pleasantries. I tell the truth to that question to be open and real. That's not to say I go into any deep details or use the moment as a soapbox. I simply tell others I am great, or tired, or drained, excited, looking forward to something, or that I'm not doing very well. I want other people to do the same with me. We're not always 100% every day - that's life. A life worth living is one where there high mountain tops and deep valleys and sharing those moments with others - even complete strangers. Unless you are in a pleasant meadow.
The pleasant meadow lies somewhere about 30% up the mountain. It has some grass, a little creek, maybe a deer or rabbit comes across - shit, that actually sounds really nice right now. It's a pleasant place, a place that's very easy to never leave. When you're in a deep valley, it looks like the most idyllic place ever. People get stuck there all the time. Life in the pleasant meadow is without conflict, without noticeable struggle. It's a safe and easy existence. At the same time, there is no growth or movement in the meadow. There are no high points there. You just exist in the meadow. It's pleasant.
The pleasant meadow is enjoyable for a period. I needed the meadow when I struggled through some rough parts of life. When you're deep in a canyon of struggle, that meadow is incredibly appealing because it looks attainable. Just be careful not to get stuck in the meadow of pleasant. Don't build your house there because while it seems comfortable today, when you're staring up at the mountain peaks tomorrow, the pleasant meadow will start to become a deep valley.