Is Happiness a Choice?

Do you consider yourself a happy person? Can we simply choose to be happy? It may be a little more complicated than that - but it's always worth it.
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Happy woman

Then there are the times that we have to deal with major life changes like death, break-ups, health issues, job losses, money woes and family drama. If we’re actually in the throes of an unhappy time, feeling happiness may seem like a distant memory. However, no matter how unhappy the time, there will still be happy moments in our midst— if we notice them.

That’s the magical thing about happiness. It happens everywhere – even as a momentary reprieve from our unhappiness.

Our choice isn’t always about being happy, but more about deciding which unhappy moments we cling to.

Even on our best days we have a tendency to hang onto the unhappy instead of the happy. For example, if we have two conversations at work, one with a co-worker who always pushes our buttons and one with a co-worker who always motivates us, which one do we remember going home from work? The one with the button pushing co-worker gets into our head and expends emotional energy instead of the one that motivates us. However, we can make a choice to let go of the demotivating conversation and focus on the motivating one.

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Recognizing happiness alone doesn’t mean that you’ll never feel unhappy again because you choose not to. That’s not realistic or even healthy. However, since happiness happens even in the midst of unhappiness, by recognizing more of it, you’ll have the opportunity to feel happier more often.

About Pamela Gail Johnson

Pamela Gail founded the Secret Society of Happy People in 1998 to provide a missing voice for those who are happy and want to express it without other people raining on their parade. The Society provided her with a unique opportunity to interact with thousands of happy, and not-so-happy people in their struggles to be happy most of the time. She is the author of Don’t Even Think of Raining on My Parade: Adventures of the Secret Society of Happy People (PJ Press, June 2000).


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