To listen to the blog post “How You Can Choose To Be Happy Starting Right Now” over reading it then click the play button below.
What if I told you that you can choose to be happy and that happiness is a decision? I know you would probably think that I am crazy right? Because you may be depressed or sad and you may be thinking to yourself if I could choose to be happy then why aren’t I?
The fact of the matter is that I am not just blowing smoke up your butt telling you something that is not true. Happiness is a decision, no matter what you are feeling; jealousy, anger, depression, or anxiety; you can choose not to feed into these emotions. You can choose to not let them consume you and affect your thinking. You can choose to be happy. Also, check out my video below on my struggle with depression.
If you don’t believe me then I am going to give you a little bit of evidence to back up what I am saying.
In a recent video (Dan Gilbert’s TED talk “Why am I happy”). He essentially states:
Human beings have something that we might think of as a "psychological immune system." A system of cognitive processes, largely non-conscious cognitive processes, that help them change their views of the world so that they can feel better about the worlds in which they find themselves. We synthesize happiness, but we think happiness is a thing to be found. Natural happiness is what we get when we get what we wanted, and synthetic happiness is what we make when we don't get what we wanted. And in our society, we have a strong belief that synthetic happiness is of an inferior kind. I want to suggest to you that synthetic happiness is every bit as real and enduring as the kind of happiness you stumble upon when you get exactly what you were aiming for.
So you may have read this and have wondered to yourself what in the world is he trying to say and what does all of this really mean. Well, let me break it down to you.
1. You Can Choose To Be Happy By Changing Your Perception
To get straight to the point of the entire video what is saying is that anyone can be happy no matter what they are going through. This is because happiness is about the perception of your circumstances. Meaning that there are some really broken people out there in the world that are choosing to be happy over some really rich people who are out here being depressed.
There are some really sick people out there choosing to be happier than healthy people. Because they have mastered the art of learning how to perceive their circumstances and understand the basic premise of choosing to be happy versus being overwhelmed by their circumstances. I talk about how to change the way you look at things in the video down below that you can watch. And don’t forget to subscribe to my channel.
2. Choose To Be Happy ~ If Happiness is a decision Why Don’t Most People Choose It?
As the video states, people are not happy when they do not get what they want. They are basing their happiness based on what they don’t have. BUT there are several people in the world who don’t have a lot but yet they choose to be happy. The reason why people choose NOT to be happy is that it is a lot easier and socially acceptable for people to be upset about what they are NOT getting and therefore that is what people choose to focus on.
Choose To Be Happy ~ Case in point
I am a single unmarried woman over 30. When I tell people that they give me the “aww poor you” look because women who are over 30 and who are not married and are single moms should be sad because they are old maids. BUT I am happy and the reason why I am happy is that I am more focused on what I do have versus what I don’t.
So what I do not have is a husband BUT that is just one thing. Why should that one thing define my happiness? What I do have is a business, 3 degrees, an amazing son, and an amazing life. So do you see how that works? Even though it is socially acceptable for me to NOT be happy because I do not have a relationship at my age I am choosing not to feed in that. I perceive my life to be complete and therefore I am happy. You can watch my video below if you are over 30 and single for an encouraging message that will help you out.
With all of this being said and all the evidence that I have just given you about how you can choose to be happy. I want to give you four things that you can implement to make sure that you are choosing to be happy.
3. Choose To Be Happy Find something to be thankful for
There is something that everyone can be thankful for. No matter how much you think your life sucks, somebody else’s life sucks even more, and they would be glad to have what you have (see my blog here). So even if you can be thankful for having clean water to drink that day, food to eat so that you do not starve, or even the fact that you have an air mattress to sleep on instead of sleeping outside.
Be thankful for that, because there are a lot of people in this world who do not even have that. Being thankful helps change your perception and makes you realize that no matter how bad you have it, there is someone out there who has it worse and would love to change places with you in a heartbeat. Also, check out my video below on how you can stay positive during hard times.
4. Choose To Be Happy ~ Put things into perspective
Whatever it is that you are angry, jealous, or sad about keeping things into perspective. When I lost a close family member at 3 months old (see blog here). I thought that it was unfair. But as a Christian, I had to believe that he was in heaven and that I would see him again. And that helped alleviate my sadness.
If you are angry or jealous, then you must understand that nine times out of ten that the people you are angry and jealous over simply do not know or care. So why waste your energy on it. And for anxiety, realize that there are always things on this Earth that you cannot control. Whatever is going to be, will be, and therefore there is no reason to be anxious about anything.
Control what you can and what you can’t let go of and let God. And always keep things in perspective. Do not make a mountain out of a molehill. Most of the things we make a big deal about will not really matter to us the next day or even the next year.
5. Choose To Be Happy ~ Talk To Yourself or Affirmations
I once knew a guy who suffered from hallucinations. Every day he had to tell himself, this is not real. There are no aliens walking around in my front yard. That is impossible. Yes, it was a daily struggle but sometimes you have to talk yourself out of the negativity that you are you feeling. You have to literally tell you self
“Today I will choose to be positive, happy, and today will be a good day.”
You may not feel this way at first, but the longer you say it, and the more you try to believe it. Whatever it is you are struggling with, come up with affirmations that counter your issue. Your words have meaning (click my blog here) The more you say it, the more what you say will become your reality.
If you keep telling yourself that you do not have anything good to offer or you do not deserve better then that is exactly what you will be and exactly what you will get because that is what you keep telling yourself. And therefore, that is what you have become. (see my blog here on overcoming negative thinking).
But if you choose to be positive and say positive things to yourself all of that time then that is what will become your reality and being happy is what you will become. That is why it is a good practice to make daily affirmations apart of your daily routine if you want to choose happiness. To help you out with affirmations, then check out my Chrisitan Manifestation Guide with both Bible verses and affirmations.
6. Choose To Be Happy ~ Fourth, Meditation and Prayer
As a Christian, I have learned that if God is for me then no one can be against me. Even in the hard times, job loss, and financial hardship (click my blog here to read my story). Not everything is always easy but when I pray it makes things a lot easier. I believe prayer changes things. It can change your situation and if your situation cannot change then prayer at the very least can change how you feel about your situation.
For I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength. Philippians 4:11-13
This verse talks about choosing to be happy no matter what it looks like around you. Prayer, meditation, and being one with God can bring you to that place of joy no matter what the situation around you looks like.
If you know someone that needs to take that first step in choosing to be happy then share this post with them.
I really enjoyed the tips. In your opinion depression is a choice? I agreed with everything else but I do feel that in some circumstances like a chemical imbalance may not be “fixed” with a new perspective.
I love the point you made about other people not being affected by negative emotions! So very true
Even if they were to take medication, medicine only takes you so far. Psychiatrist that provide medicine for depression also tell people to get counseling to learn how to handle their emotions. That is because people who are depressed still need to change their thinking and learn how to cope, medication will cure the depression completely. Plus no one can be on medicine forever. Eventually they will have to learn how to deal with their emotions by changing their perspective.
Hi Sophia I’m glad I found this post on Coffee Shop Conversations. Recently, I’ve been thinking a lot about how much control we have over our thoughts and emotions and this fit right in. I’ve even been encouraging my 8yo to control her thoughts and not allow her thoughts to control her — powerful stuff, right? 🙂
I’m also mindful that for some, controlling your thoughts and handling depression are not as easy as talking yourself into a good mood. My heart goes out to those who suffer in this way, not just from the disease but also from society’s misconceptions. I hope to be more aware and sensitive even as we continue the discussion on controlling our thoughts.
Hugs and blessings!
Marva | sunSPARKLEshine
I’m totally guilty of getting caught up in emotions (I like to call myself – Passionate) but this is great advice for once we’ve acknowledged the feeling, how to step back and work through them.