A Lesson On Happiness

Happiness is not ready made. It comes from our own actions. – Dalai Lama

Imagine this: Constant happiness. Never ever feeling sad about anything or ever sinking into the dark abyss of hopelessness and despair. Imagine always walking through life hearing nothing but the sounds of the birds constantly singing or always seeing life in vibrant living colours and never black & white. Sounds good, doesn’t it? What if happiness is more than just a feeling though? Have you ever considered that maybe happiness is a choice? What if happiness is not just about the absence of sadness but rather how we respond to it?

A 92-year-old moved into a nursing home today. She was well-fashioned, well-poised and proud. However, she was also blind. Her husband of 70 years passed away recently, necessitating lady’s move. As she walked to her new nursing home room, I described her surroundings. “I love it,” she said, as enthusiastic as a small child on Christmas morning. “We have not reached the room yet,” I said. “That does not matter,” she said. “Happiness is something you decide on ahead of time. Whether I like my room or not does not depend on the furniture’s arrangement. It is all about how I arrange my mind. I have already decided to love it. It’s a decision I make every morning. I figure I can either spend the day moping about my life, or I can get up and be thankful for what I still have. Each day is a gift. As long as I know that, I will be happy.”

Happiness is a choice. It is not just a feeling but a choice we can make every single day.  If I can choose to be happy, if I can start every day not with thoughts of “oh, how tired I am”, but with thoughts of “today will be a great day” then the day will be, regardless of what comes your way. This is not to say that bad things will not happen but that you will decide to respond to them with happiness and positivity and refuse to let them capsize your boat. This is the key to happiness. Try it.

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