Decide

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The (crazy) author. Be happy or die trying. Just sayin´…

No better way to start 2018 than declaring it the Official Happiness Year.

To celebrate it with you, I´m lifting the veil of the book I´m currently working on.

The subject is Happiness and I´m in love with it. I hope you´ll fall in love with it, too, once the book is out there. For now, here´s an excerpt from a chapter I´m calling “DECIDE”.

EnJOY!

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More than a set of circumstances that can, and will, change, happiness is a decision.

Decide to be happy today.

And tomorrow.  

And tomorrow.

And tomorrow.

And tomorrow.

And tomorrow.

And tomorrow.

And tomorrow.

No, this is not a typing mistake. Yes, the words “and tomorrow” were intentionally repeated to exhaust you.

Because to choose happiness, the same way you may choose to brush your teeth, on a daily basis, is work and it can be exhausting. The other option – allowing life, or ourselves, to put us down – is less appetizing.

This is an integral part of Happiness as a default mode – creating a Happy Garden we can bounce back to after every painful moment. I would say it is not possible to create, and maintain, that garden without a daily decision that sounds something like this:

Today, independently of external circumstances, I will be happy.

Grab yourself to a cloud in the sky; hold a picture´s hand, hug a book; capture a smile from a stranger and keep it in your hands; get oxygen from a ray of light – the faintest, if that is all you have at your disposal – ; delight yourself with the silence.

Use what you have. Appreciate it. Save yourself. Now. Always now.

Today, independently of external circumstances, I will be happy.

Nothing sounds better, or more rebellious, than that statement.

Rest assured: most of us can be happy if we are enjoying a pleasant time in our life; if there is no disease, no major economic afflictions, no fear for our life. Many of us cannot. There are plenty of examples of people who have “everything” to be happy and, still, feel miserable.

If I am healthy, I have my basic needs met, I love and I am loved, and I am fulfilling my dreams, there is a strong chance of being happy. But circumstances change – what happens when the shit hits the fan?

Being happy when everything is cool is for sissies. Being happy when things go wrong, it´s for the brave hearts, the cool cats who won´t give up; the warriors who´d rather die with a smile than live as a victim. 

The real deal lies is DECIDING to be happy when things go up and when they go down;  when life is as distant from our “ideal” as earth is from Neptune.

Choosing to be happy when the ones we love betray us or we betray them; when we lose our faith, health, job, wealth, horizon, purpose; when we feel as low as they come; lost, below zero; finished.

Choosing to be happy when we struggle to find reasons for being happy is The Great Adventure.

If we look for something, we find it.

If we look for sorrow, there will be plenty of sorrow waiting for us on every corner.

If we look for happiness, there will be loads of it at our feet.

I´m not saying we should be happy dorks, living in self-denial, pretending everything is ok when it is not; unable to see the areas of our life that need improvement. We can see those areas, search for improvement strategies – what can I do to change my situation? – while choosing to be happy. Not when things are back to “acceptable” but now. Right – damn – now.

We can avoid the trap of waiting for the perfect moment when we can, finally, relax and enjoy the ride. The ride is always here, in this moment – never tomorrow, whatever you presume tomorrow will bring.

It´s a decision, I´m telling you. Happiness is not a random state we fall in, and out, but a perspective we choose to feed, daily, with discipline, stubbornness, awareness and a fierce survival instinct. That is what it boils down to: survival.

Long sustained unhappiness can kill us. Happiness creates life, opens doors, it shows a way where there was none.

Even if we fail at it, and we will, once in a while, deciding “Today I will be happy and appreciate whatever comes my way” is possible.

“Utopia lies at the horizon.

When I draw nearer by two steps,

it retreats two steps.

If I proceed ten steps forward, it

swiftly slips ten steps ahead.

No matter how far I go, I can never reach it.

What, then, is the purpose of utopia?

It is to cause us to advance.”

Eduardo Galeano

To read more, you will have to wait for the book. Coming soon!

Art by Asako Eguchi.jpg

Art by Asako Eguchi

 

2 thoughts on “Decide

  1. I LOVE this post and the message you share! Every day is a fresh opportunity to make the conscious choice to adopt a positive attitude and face the day, whatever it may bring. It’s hard to get sucked into our circumstances and let negativity drain us, but happiness IS possible. Wishing you a very happy 2018! I also discuss wellness and happiness on my blog and would love if you visited! https://www.alliemaelynn.com 🙂

    Like

    • Hi, lovely!
      Thank you for reading and commenting.
      Happiness is a choice indeed – more a question of discipline, and awareness, than external circumstances.
      I´m glad to know you can relate to the post. I´ll surely take a look at your blog.

      Keep rocking.
      Joana Saahirah

      Liked by 1 person

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