I believe in the lyrics of Bobby McFerrin’s song “Don’t Worry, Be Happy.” Since I have started living my life by this song, I realized that it consists of a few main lines of lyrics that stand out more than the others. They are also the ones that I most strongly believe in.
The first line that stands out for me goes, “Here I give you my phone number. When you worry, call me. I make you happy.” Although I don’t really have Mr. McFerrin’s phone number, I see the song itself as a phone number. When I learned I had something called Marfan’s Syndrome I called 1-800-Be-Happy. Its my own personal mental phone line that connects straight to a loop playing of the song.
The second two lines that stand out goes, “In every life we have some trouble. When you worry you make it double.” Every week I run into more trouble whether its due homework the next day because of my bad case of procrastination or if its just every day unanswerable questions that pop into my head. Will I ever get a girlfriend? What truly is there after death? Should I get a Coke or Skittles? Every single time I think about these questions, McFerrin’s song pops into my head and reminds me of what not to do.
The second to last set of lines that stand out for me go, “Cause when you worry, your face will frown, and that will bring everybody down.” Many social environments seem to change when I change sort of like those mood ring things. I walk into a room that resembles the a kindergarten room with personalities bouncing off the walls fueled with fun. I have a dark blue aura that is bursting from the seams with worry and sorrow. The aura will immediately start to spread like an emotional black plague across the room. Before I know it, the windows seem to have developed a tint on them. The room has become gloomy and dreary. The only chatter now is just random feeble attempts to break the newly formed layer of ice.
The final and most important lyric that should stand out for anyone at all goes, “Don’t worry, be happy.” This one line summarizes the whole song and its meaning for me. Ever too concerned about what people’s first thoughts are about you? “Don’t worry, be happy.” Doomed to be permanently skinny to the point of it just looks like you have skin on top of blood vessels on top of bone? “Don’t worry, be happy.” Country at war? “Don’t worry, be happy.” Sun going to blow up sometime in the future? “Don’t worry, be happy.” Damned to an eternity of being single? “Don’t worry, be happy.”
Fellow living organisms, I recommend that you learn this song. Pass this song onto your children. I even give you my permission to use my own mental phone line. Goodbye and may this song survive for centuries after you and I are dead.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.