Someone once told me that you only need three things to be happy:
- Something to do.
- Something to look forward to.
- Someone or something to love.
Although having all three of these things in our lives can provide the opportunity to experience happiness, they certainly don’t guarantee it. I know a lot of people who have plenty to do, plenty to look forward to and someone or something to love, yet happiness eludes them. Well, if we can’t count on these things to make us happy, what can truly help us cultivate a life of happiness and joy? I believe happiness is a choice.
“The happiness of your life depends upon the quality of your thoughts.”
Marcus Aurelius, Meditations
“Most folks are about as happy as they make up their minds to be.”
Each of us has the free will to choose our thoughts at any given moment. It is very empowering to realize that outside circumstances do not dictate whether we are happy or not. We choose how we react and respond to the world around us. We are constantly forming opinions and passing judgements on almost everything we see and hear in our daily lives. Did you know you do not have to carry an opinion or pass judgement on everything you see and hear? That’s right! Frankly, it saps our time, energy, and attention away from what we truly value in life when we allow ourselves to be bombarded and overwhelmed by all the negative news and opinions we’re exposed to each day.
“We are disturbed not by things, but by the view which we take of them.”
If you want to pursue greater happiness in your life in 2024 and beyond, please realize happiness is 100% in your control regardless of your circumstances. Don’t let the Presidential election determine whether you’ll be happy or not. Don’t let “the news” determine whether you will enjoy each day that you have with your family and friends. Don’t let social media determine how you feel about your life compared to others.
Happy 2024! I hope you choose more happiness in your life this year!
- Wes Sadler, CFP®