Years ago, I heard a former Miss America share that we have the ability to be happy anytime because we can choose to be happy; it's always within our reach.
When I heard that, I sat up and took notice. Always within my reach? Can it be true? Until then, when the Grumpy Family would show up, I thought I just had to ride it out until they left... or my mood changed for the better. I didn't realize I could deliberately choose to be happy. How exciting to think about it.
Well, my life took a turn for the better when I realized the ball of happiness really was in my court -- and I had a split-second moment in time where I can choose my mood and frame of mind. Even on PMS days. I didn't need to wait for the mood to pass like a quirky summer storm.
I also learned -- to my amazement -- that as soon as I lifted my shoulders and smiled, just how quickly my whole demeanor followed suit. Suddenly I'd feel less tired, my mood would swing upward, and I felt lighter.
Something else I used to do to quell the habit of waking up feeling grumpy, I began to tell myself every night as I was getting ready to sleep, "Tomorrow I will wake up with vitality and good humour."
The next morning, just on the edge of consciousness as I woke up, if I started to think "ugg, I have to get up", I'd immediately remember what I told myself the night before: Today I choose to wake up with vitality and good humour. And it would shift my thoughts to something lighter.
Here's a Charlie Brown cartoon I think is funny because I can so relate. Perhaps you'll find that too.....
So Cheryl Prewitt-Salem was right. You want to know what else? Me choosing to be cheerful (no matter what's going on) has begun to permeate the atmosphere wherever I go. So often as I'm going about my business, I'll have people actually make eye contact and smile, and I'll wonder why. I think it's because I'm happy and it shows on my face.
- Change your stance -- stand up and square your shoulders.
- Find a mirror and look yourself in the eye -- dare yourself to smile.
- Choose to wake up each morning with vitality and good humour.
If creating little glimpses of heaven in my corner of the world is part of my daily purpose, then it's working. As a result of making choices to be happy as often as possible, my life has taken a definite turn for the more beautiful.