Official blog for the book "Just Behind the Door"

Decide on Happiness

Some of you may remember the children’s song, “If You’re Happy and You Know It Clap Your Hands.” Having spent over 38 years in education, I can close my eyes and actually hear the melodic voices of little children singing that song with accompanying giggles and enthusiastic clapping of hands.

As we become adults, the melody may slip away, even the words may be forgotten but the thought is worth keeping around to examine from time to time. Ask yourself right now, “Am I happy?” After really thinking about it, if you are genuinely NOT happy, it is time to do something about it. It doesn’t count to say to yourself, “I’ll be happy when…” as if it is a condition of your life that is dependent upon achieving something you don’t presently have.

What will it take to make you internally happy? What is the major sticking point that is keeping you stuck in unhappiness? Is it resolvable? Obviously, the death of a loved one is something that cannot be changed. But, the way you look at it can make all the difference. They did not desert you because they didn’t love you anymore. It was simply their exit point – their time to move on. They did not disappear forever. You really will see them again on a soul level, and in the meantime you can reconnect with them through the help of others if you choose. If you have stopped living and are simply existing since their death that is not what they would have wanted for you. Life is to be lived and a big part of living is to decide to be happy.

Yes, that’s right, I said DECIDE to be happy. It takes work and a concerted effort to make lemon aid from lemons but it can be done. What I do know is that there are no awards given for being, “The Most Unhappy Person in Show” category. When you see your glass consistently as half-empty rather than half-full, it drains you and those around you of the positive energy needed to live your life.

There are some things you really can do to improve your perspective. First of all, be the person you would want to be around. Smiling helps, laughing is even better. Find humor in the mundane and ridiculous – if you just look around it’s everywhere. Next, decide on a plan to work through any issue you are dealing with at the moment. A counselor or best friend could be of great help by being a reflective listener. Talk it out, verbalize your feelings and don’t allow yourself to let the issue ‘eat away at you’ from the inside or out. Until the real issue surfaces you may find yourself generalizing that your entire life is simply not good.

Exercise, meditation and spending time giving to others really does boost your physical and mental well being. Visualize yourself as a person who finds joy in life. How does it feel? Good, right? You may, at first, have to ‘fake it ’till you make it,’ but be patient with yourself. It will manifest itself in your life. When we hear that we have to believe it to see it, it’s true.

Give yourself permission to be happy. You deserve it!

Have a great few days!

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