Is Happiness A Choice?
I've been sat watching a daytime TV show here in the UK, for the past week their focus or theme has been on the issue of 'Happiness.' Throughout the week, we have seen and heard what 'happiness' means for different people, and we've heard from psychologists, therapists etc on tips or ways to be happier.
One of the therapists on the show mentioned that they believe happiness is a choice and this got me thinking - is an emotion like this, really something we can choose?
I'd be inclined to say that yes, of course we can make an effort every day to be happier - to notice the little things, to show gratitude to others and for what we have, to improve areas of our life etc. However, as someone who has also suffered from poor mental health at times, I can also say, sometimes no amount of wanting to be happy works. Quite simply, I believe that yes, everyday we can try to be a happier, brighter person, however the operative word there is 'Try.' We can put in the groundwork, however sometimes it's just simply impossible or more difficult to encourage or arouse feelings of happiness and positivity.
Happiness for me is simply a feeling - one I find very difficult to describe. For me, I am happy when I am present in the moment, when I am not worrying about the future or dwelling on the past, when I am fully immersed in whatever I am doing and am able to enjoy it. I am happier when I am in a better frame of mind - I am happy when I have an improved lifestyle, when I am eating healthier and adopting a better approach to exercise. Happiness for me is in all the little things around me and all the things I do have rather than what I don't. I try to 'choose' happiness at every turn, but ultimately I sometimes feel like it's not always ours to choose.
What do you think? Is happiness a choice? What does it mean for you?