Monday, July 26, 2010

Be happy. It starts with a choice.

Hello, friends.

I have a pressing issue to address. It's called a lack of joy and it seems to be all around lately. I keep reading and hearing about people who are just in utter despair. They are stories of hopelessness and desperation and it breaks my heart to know that so many suffer so greatly.

But, I also hear stories of great hope. There are people in this world who are working tirelessly to bring hope and joy and peace to their lives and the lives of others, even in the midst of their own personal turmoil.

Now, on a large scale, change is difficult, but fortunately, joy can be found in the smallest of things. It starts with a choice. I will choose to be happy. I will choose to find joy in even the most frustrating and sorrowful moments of my life. I will look for something to be thankful for, and there is always something.

I'll give you an example. Last week my car wasn't stopping the way it should. I would jam the brakes and it would still roll forward. So, I took it into the shop and paid $650 for things that clearly needed to be fixed, but I was not happy to pay so much. I was even less happy when that did not solve the problem and I had to take it back and pay another $390 to fix the actual problem. Let me tell you, my potty mouth was uncontrollable that day. Not to mention the face that I had to leave my car overnight and beg rides off people which I hate. Then, when it was fixed, I had to walk 45 minutes in 100 degree heat to get it.

If you know me, you know I pretty much despise sweat and heat in general. So, I was basically miserable and pissed off as I walked to the garage. But, as I was walking, a song came on my iPod that goes "Where there's a will there's always a way. Keepin your eyes on that mountain top. One step at a time, don't ever, ever stop. Keep going when your mind says quit. Keep dreaming til you find you're living it," and I thought to myself "This is my mountain at this moment and I have a pair of good legs that can carry me where I'm going. I am able to get where I'm going despite the fact that it's inconvenient." And suddenly, a lot of my frustration went away. I hit the repeat button on my iPod and I smiled and walked a little faster.

The point is, I could've allowed myself to dwell on all the little things that had gone wrong, but I didn't. I didn't want to poison my thoughts with negativity and make myself miserable. There's a quote by Francesca Reigler that says "Happiness is an attitude. We either make ourselves miserable or happy. The amount of work is the same." I think it's a perfect quote to tuck away in our pockets. If we have to work hard anyway, we might as well enjoy it.

So, I am encouraging myself and anyone who may be reading this to try to find one small thing to be grateful for today. What can you turn joyful by making the choice to find gratitude? If nothing else, just know that I love you and if I can give you any ounce of joy, you know I will!

Love and light,

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