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Being Happy, A Choice Worth Making

Being happy is a way of life, an outlook and a willful expression of how one perceives life and all it offers.

by M. J. Joachim

Happiness is a choice. No one can force another person to be happy, though many unhappy people seem to draw on the energy of happy people all the time. Perhaps it’s their way of managing their lives or controlling their environment better. Maybe it’s their way of drawing attention to themselves or getting people to feel sorry for them. Regardless of the reasons, their physical and verbal queues oftentimes impose a heavy dose of guilt on the world, where at times, it seems as if they almost scream to the rest of us, “How can you be so happy? Don’t you see how miserable I am and how hard my life is?!”

Habits are learned and develop in many different ways. Being happy is a positive habit. It’s similar to being optimistic, eating well and exercising regularly. We all should do certain things, and if we don’t the consequences of our lack of doing them soon reveal themselves in very obvious ways. The effect of being happy results in more positive energy for ourselves and those around us.

Happy people often suffer from guilt associated with compassion they have for unhappy people. They want to help. They try to help. They feel bad when almost all their efforts come to no avail. This is the result of the “misery loves company” factor. Unhappy people want to hang out with people who will wallow in unhappiness together. When they meet up with happy people (subconsciously or not – depending on the degree of their unhappy habit), they do their best to sabotage the conversation and mood, ultimately sucking the energy out of the situation, wind out of the sails…use your own favorite cliché for this one and call it what you will.

Being happy is a way of life, an outlook and a willful expression of how one perceives life and all it offers. It is a contribution to society that builds up communities, creates unbreakable bonds in families and recognizes miracles in the world at large. The benefits of being happy include sleeping more peacefully, working more efficiently and communicating more effectively. They’re contagious, admired and sought after by multitudes of people.

Being happy comes in shades of gray. No one is happy all the time, nor should they be. Life is filled with real experiences that manage to surface all sorts of emotions – some of them very unpleasant. The correct response to these emotions depends upon the circumstances creating them. Obviously, happy people are human and feel a sense of loss when someone dies, a sense of fear when unemployment strikes, a sense of worry when teenagers miss their curfews and all the other reasons and events that draw on raw emotion at any given time.

Being unhappy as a habit is often a perpetual state of complaining. It’s crying wolf, if you will, about Murphy’s Law – Everything that can go wrong will, and if it doesn’t you’re too optimistic about things and a dreamer. Being unhappy is the purposeful act of finding fault, with or without anything happening. It’s a choice to be negative and unhappy, a choice that must never be allowed to prevent happy people from making the choice to be happy, regardless of how much compassion they have for the unhappy people in their lives.

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©2011, 2012 All Rights Reserved Teresa DePoy