Happiness is a choice

Let your light shine for a cheerful outlook and socioemotional wellbeing

The darkness of wrongdoing constantly surrounds us. Unless we consciously choose to be as positive and joyful as possible, it can easily overwhelm us with its negativity, creating a constant stream of negative emotions.

One of the greatest things about life is that we have the freedom to choose our attitudes, our thoughts, and our actions. As with any freedom, it comes with responsibility. If you make a poor choice, the outcome is also your responsibility. As depicted below, all life can be envisioned as a spectrum of light ranging from the darkest black of negativity, wrong-doing, and despair to the brightest light of goodness and positivity. Choosing to be negative means that you have decided to be dark, critical, and reactive. You choose not to take action to make your situation better; you choose to remain more stressed and unhappy than you could be. Choosing the light means you choose to be as positive, proactive, and good as you can most of the time; you choose to take control of your life.

Which level of brightness below best reflects your attitude most of the time?

Very Dark                     Dark                       Twilight                       Light                      Bright

To Ponder. Based on your response above choose the best match below and push out the boundaries of your light by considering the following.

  • Light: You consistently choose to be happy and positive. Consider how you let your light shine? How could it shine even brighter? How do you keep it from growing dim?
  • Twilight: Perhaps you find the motivation to maintain a happy attitude, or just don’t care to. Consider why you feel you don’t deserve more happiness. What’s standing in your way?
  • Dark: You may like darkness, want to punish yourself, or feel your situation is hopeless. Consider what it is costing you to be negative and critical. What will happen to you if you don’t change? How does this affect others? What would it take to let a little light in?

Consistent dark feelings are not health or wellness. Don’t delay; get the help you deserve today?

Looking for more? Try Activity 7.3 Ways to Maintain Happiness

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

Leave a Reply

8 thoughts on “Happiness is a choice

  1. As your book discusses, much of happiness is letting go of how we feel others have somehow wronged us. There is a TED video of Brene’ Brown (who studies human connection) – discussing our ability to empathize, belong, love. In a poignant, funny talk, she shares a deep insight from her research, one that sent her on a personal quest to know herself as well as to understand humanity. It’s worth a view and fits well with the Wellness Compass: https://www.ted.com/talks/brene_brown_on_vulnerability

  2. I do enjoy darkness and find it comforting, but you describe darkness here, it is almost frightening. Someone I used to admire and tried to brighten constantly cast shadows over me. It was years of useless attempts and energy, so I made a break in order to realize I can choose happiness. The specific “happy strategies” in Activity 7.3 are concrete and tangible. I found it very useful to go through the list and prioritize, then apply.

  3. The photo is inspiring. The caption under the photo should read “constantly”. Looking forward to reviewing the rest of the blog soon. You are an inspiration my friend.

  4. Activity 7.3 Ways to maintain happiness… is not linked yet , but look forward to reading more about it.

    I know a person who always has a frown on his face and seems so negative. It must be a sad, lonely place for that person. In contrast I try to have a sunny disposition and approach the world with a shining light and I do think it helps in daily relationships to project positive energy, instead of negative energy.