Thursday, October 17, 2013


Happiness. I'm pretty sure we all want it...some people find it easier than others...some people seem to not even look for it...some have every reason to be happy while others seem to have plenty of reasons to be unhappy.

Have you heard the phrase "Choose to be happy"

I have been thinking about this phrase for several days. I thought about blogging about it a few days ago...but then things didn't go the way I wanted that day...and I chose to be unhappy. That fact made it difficult for me to write a post about choosing to be happy.

Now a couple of days have passed and I am over it. And even though nothing big or exciting happened today...nothing bad or horrible did either...which made it fairly easy for me to choose to be happy when I got up this morning.

This afternoon our Scientist called and he was clearly happy. Things were going really well for him and he wanted to share his happiness with me. Of course, that just made me happy also. Then as we chatted, he told me about an exercise in his communications class earlier in the week.  

He arrived at class feeling a bit down. He was feeling frustrated about a different class and was letting that get to him. He didn't sleep well...was tired...and grumpy when he got to class. When the professor arrived, he gave each student a piece of paper with an emotion on it. He instructed the students to display that emotion during the class exercise. 

Wouldn't you know it...when our Scientist looked at his read: "happiness". He rolled his eyes. He couldn't believe that was the emotion he had to depict to his fellow students when he was feeling so low. But then the girl next to him complained she had gotten "social anxiety" and the girl on the other side of him found "depression" on her paper.

Our Scientist decided maybe "happiness" wasn't so bad after all...and he put all his effort into portraying happiness to his fellow students. Interestingly, after a few minutes of smiling, joking, and showing happiness to those around him...our Scientist started feeling happy. By the time he left class...he truly was happy.

Do you believe happiness is a choice?

I'm pretty sure there are many days in our lives when it's up to us if we are going to be happy or not. Sure...we all have days we could go either way...but truly some day's circumstances may very well allow it to be our choice.

Sometimes the circumstances in our lives are difficult....sad...and heartbreaking. I think during those times bouts of unhappiness may be justified. But if we were all being honest...most of our ordinary days...when we let the little unimportant things get to us...we allow ourselves to be unhappy when we really could have chosen to be happy. 

I'll be the first to admit that it's not always easy to choose happiness. It seems like it should be easy...but some days it really isn't easy at all. However...just because it isn't easy...doesn't mean it isn't a possible choice. Maybe on those kinds of days it is even more important to choose happiness.

I looked up the word happy in the Bible today. I found several verses on the subject, but my favorite was found in Ecclesiastes:

"I know that there is nothing better for people than to be happy and to do good while they live."  ~Ecclesiastes 3:12

Seriously....finding this verse in the Bible today...made me happy.

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