Is Happiness Really Just a Matter of Choice?
There was a period in my life, probably about 20 years or more if I am honest with myself, whereby I was grumpy in the morning. Every morning. From the moment I got up to about 1pm. I was awful to live with. Anything and everything got on my nerves.
It didn’t matter what else was happening in my life, mornings were my renowned periods of being, well, horrible really. Not only to myself, but to those nearest and dearest. Especially to those people.
Then one day, something changed in me. I think somebody close lost their patience with me after another few hours of me moaning about all and sundry.
This woke me up. They gave me some much needed intervention. Even though I think they were far too patient with me letting me go on for as long as I did…
Since that time, I no longer wake up grouchy. Not even if I have been up late writing.
I simply decided to be happy! Everyday when I wake up now I say to myself, “Something wonderful will happen to me today”. Well, nearly every day I remember.
But the funny thing is when I reflect on my day, something wonderful has happened. And I always find something.
Saying this one small sentence starts my day on the right foot. It helps me choose to be happy.
A ‘bad day’ doesn’t make a bad mood; but a bad mood makes a day bad.
A lot of people say to me, “I’ll be happy when I have achieved promotion” or, “I will be happy when I have got my new car” or, “I will be happy when I am earning more money”
You might think you will be. But you won’t.
According to research, receiving new things (Like a new car, getting a bigger house) or even earning more money, will only make you feel slightly better for about (a maximum time) 3 months. After such time, you will return to the emotional state, or you can call it happiness level, as you were before.
In a nutshell, this means that external things won’t make you happy. And I think the same applies to people too. Other people can make us feel good for a while but they won’t makes us happy.
Others can add to your happiness for sure. I believe that.
But you and you alone are responsible for your happiness. You are the captain of your joy. You and you alone are in control of that. Nothing and nobody else is.
“Yes, but Rob……” ( yeah add in your life story or excuse there, if you have one)
We Choose How We React or Respond to Life
No it doesn’t matter what is happening in your life. That does not mean that there are certain situations that will come along that don’t make you feel like cartwheeling around the house 24/7. That’s just how it is.
But it’s not always what is happening to us. It is how we deal or respond to life’s curveballs. Again, that is a choice.
In every adversity there is an opportunity to find happiness. There is always something to be grateful and thankful for. Always. If you just care to look hard enough. This attitude is a choice. Therefore, you can choose to be happy.
One of My Curveballs
I remember when my Mum was struck down with cancer. She was diagnosed in the March and died near the end of May in the same year. It was upsetting to say the least.
But I was so grateful for the two years I had just spent living near her. I hadn’t seen her, or even called her for many, many years prior to this. So those two years were extra special.
I could have chosen to focus on all the time I wasn’t with her. That would have been a reaction.
But I didn’t. I focused on the wonderful time I did get to spend with her; going to the city, playing scrabble often and going on long walks with the dog together. I felt truly blessed at having that opportunity to make up for the time I had never been in contact with her. This in turn helped me cope better.
(You may wonder if I have gone off on a tangent there or what does that have to do with the subject of this post? By having this attitude, I was able to remember all the great times with my Mum far quicker after her untimely passing and rather be upset doing this, I was able to recall those times often and with love and fondness. This in turn made me happier)
So choose to be happy. Choose to do things that add to your happiness. Be around people who add to your happiness. Be silly. Pamper yourself. Set a day a month, every month, where you will do things for you and only you.
Then try doing something weekly. Then daily. Use your imagination. Be kind to yourself and choose happiness.
Life becomes so exciting when you think something wonderful is going to happen to you every day.
When I look back at the dull, black and white videos of ‘old me’ once in awhile ( I rarely do that), I laugh at all those hours I wasted being miserable. And I am so grateful I woke up. Life has been so much better and happier, so much more of the time since I decided to be happy.
What do you choose to be?
Feel free to share or comment below…if you want to of course…I always appreciate comments and shares.