Growing up, I'd heard things like "you can choose your attitude" or "no one can make you mad." I thought this was the kind of garbage you hear from a lame self-help book, but I was also a really unhappy person. Luckily, I had the opportunity to grow and mature and change my outlook on life and I've come to the conclusion that yes, happiness is a choice.
Now I can honestly say that I am a happy person. I like myself and my life. I attribute a lot of this change to this.
In my work and school, I am constantly meeting new people. All kinds of people. And its given me a chance to reflect on this concept which I've decided to blog about. I think some people think I will be happy when _________ (fill in the blank.) Par example:
I will be happy when I get a boyfriend.
I will be happy when I'm married.
I will be happy when I get into nursing school.
Oh wait, I will be happy when I graduate from nursing school!
I will be happy when I buy a house and have children.
I will be happy when my kids are potty trained.
I will be happy when my kids are grown.
I will be happy when I am retired.
You could go your whole life without enjoying a single moment of it! What a waste! Be happy now! Enjoy the stage you are in! Life changes, everyone struggles, but find something to be happy about. I come across many people who are very, very sick or who are very lonely. But some of them are still very cheerful people. Others are cantakerous grouches that no one likes to interact with.
Some people are rich, have family involved in their lives but still can't find satisfaction in life. There is one particular lady at my work who has been struggling with breast cancer and she is a widow, but oh how the room lights up when she enters! She stays busy, makes friends with everyone and goes on cruises with other friends from the retirement community. On the other hand, there is another widow who cries to me often because she is so lonely and unhappy. (Believe me, she has my sympathy and compassion.) What is the difference between these 2 women? Well, one makes an effort to leave her apartment and makes friends. She volunteers. The conclusion that I've come to, is that you must choose to be happy no matter your circumstance. Easier said than done, I'm sure.
My advice: reflect on what you are grateful for. Do something nice for someone else. Life is uncertain. Enjoy your your happy moments. Endure the not so happy moments with a smile and courage, they will not last forever. Someone wise* once said, "Life's what you make it, so let's make it rock!"
(*Please, please note my online sarcasm. However that song illustrates my point beautifully.)