Your Overall Happiness
When I made the decision to make happiness my number one priority every day, I became aware of a whole new world of possibilities. Healthier choices instantly presented themselves. I learned how to make myself feel better when times were tough simply by shifting my thoughts and focusing on something that would lift my spirits. I began to create habits and develop mindsets that enabled me to live more in the moment and to enjoy myself during the process. That doesn’t mean that I was happy 24/7. I was well aware that there would always be challenges in my life.
Let’s face it. There will always be challenges and unexpected problems to deal with. Even the very fortunate among us experience setbacks and suffering of some kind at different stages in their lives. Challenges and stress are a part of life. As Frank Sinatra crooned, “That’s life. That’s what all the people say. You’re ridin’ high in April, shot down in May.” He also sang, “Doobie, doobie, doo,” but the relevance of that lyric totally escapes me.
My point is that you can experience unease, sadness and pain at times and still be happy overall. Your overall happiness is determined by what you choose to focus on the most in the world from day to day. That’s the key.
For example, a sunny blue sky can have scattered clouds passing by. To some, overall it’s still a sunny blue sky. To others, it’s a sky marred by clouds. You need to ask yourself what you focus on most in your world. Do you focus on the sunny blue sky or do you put your attention on the clouds? I’m not asking you to think literally, as if you were a meteorologist (unless you are one of course), but as an individual with an overall worldview. Your honest answer will be in direct relation to the degree of your overall happiness. If you fit into the category of someone who focuses on the clouds, simply by shifting your focus to the bright blue sky, your degree of happiness is immediately elevated. That concept applies to everything in your life and is otherwise known as “seeing the glass half full.”
Being the astute observer that I am, I can pretty much tell a person’s degree of overall happiness on any given day just by asking a very simple question: “How are you doing today?” Their answers will vary greatly from a high degree of happiness to a very low degree of happiness.
“My life is great.”
“Couldn’t be better.”
“Okay, I guess.”
“I’ll get by.”
“It could be worse.”
“Not so good.”
And my two personal favorites: “Don’t ask,” and “You don’t want to know!”
The responses we give can vary from day to day, depending on our circumstances and, more important, how we view them. Regardless of your current overall degree of happiness, I want you to ask yourself, “Do I want to be happier than I am?” I can only assume yes, otherwise why would you be reading this? Now, I’ll ask another question: are you willing to make the effort required to become happier than you are?
Before you answer, let me tell you there are no coincidences in life. Everything happens for a reason. You are reading this for a reason. You were drawn to it, curious about the subject because on some level, you want to better your life. Even if your life right now is pretty great and you have a high degree of overall happiness, still, you were drawn to this article because there is some benefit to you that can be derived from it.
Okay, you can answer the question now. Forgot it already? Here’s a refresher: “Am I willing to make the effort required to become happier than I am? Do I want to be happy?” Here’s a hint: Yes, you do.
Please feel free to share your thoughts and insights. I welcome all comments.
Steve Rizzo is the Attitude Adjuster. You can’t attend one of his keynote speeches, seminars, or read his books and leave with the same attitude. He’s a personal development expert, motivational business speaker, corporate-comedian and best-selling author. It’s no surprise that Steve is also a Hall Of Fame Speaker Inductee. An honor bestowed upon on fewer than 200 speakers worldwide since 1977.