Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! I have much to be grateful for.
I live a happy life. And it’s not because I’ve had everything handed to me on a silver platter. Lasting happiness isn’t the product of ease, but of determination. I’ve had to work hard to earn my station in life. I’ve certainly enjoyed certain times more than others, but I’ve found a way to be happy, no matter what difficulty I’ve faced.
This Thanksgiving I’d like to share five simple steps I take on a daily basis to be happy.
I’m pretty sure the vast majority of people’s worries stem from the fact that they are in far too much debt. Few people have enough money saved for emergencies, and they live paycheck to paycheck. This is a recipe for disaster. Even the smallest inconvenience, like a car repair or a broken washing machine, can become a major problem when a person doesn’t have any money budgeted for things like that. Live simply and don’t fall for any marketing slogans that say “you’re worth it” or “just do it.” Determine if a product is worth it to you and take your time instead of making impulsive purchases. Living without debt, whenever possible, will give you so much peace of mind.
I personally don’t drink alcohol, smoke, or do drugs. I don’t even drink coffee, tea, energy drinks, or most pop. I do my best to keep my body free of addictive substances. Doing this saves me a ton of money that I would otherwise spend on a daily basis to have the energy to make it through the day or otherwise get a short-lived buzz. I get my highs from exercising, enjoying a good movie or book, writing crazy jokes and movie reviews, and doing other healthy things. I am not perfect by any stretch of the imagination, and I do have my own deep-seated addictions and cravings. But I fight them every day. Fight the things that tempt you and as you win small victories over your addictions you will gain a greater sense of self-worth and more control over your appetites and passions.
Stand for Something
Like Shepherd Book in Serenity said, “I don’t care what you believe – just believe it!” If you have principles and standards rooted in something deeper than the latest popular trends, you’ll find yourself living a much happier life. You won’t be thrown for a loop by every new idea that you’re presented with. You’ll know what you stand for, even in the face of opposition. Knowing you are right will give you inner peace when people angrily denounce you and say you’re wrong on an issue. You won’t have to fight back or attempt to justify yourself in others’ eyes. You’ll be able to just do your own thing without worrying about what others might think of you.
Consider the Consequences
The choices we make determine our fate. If you want to be happy, consider how you treat other people. Are you kind, honest, and sophisticated in your conversations and behavior or are you mean, dishonest, and vulgar? When you are tempted to make a bad choice, consider the far-reaching consequences that choice will have. Sure, you may think one intentionally hurtful statement won’t make a difference in the grand scheme of things, but little by little such actions build your character until one day you find yourself destitute of friends with a reputation for being a jerk. If you want friends, be a friend. If you want to be happy, live in a way that you feel at peace with yourself.
Forgive and Forget
When I was a teenager, I frequently had to go to people and ask their forgiveness after doing something that I realized was not kind or just. Every time I did that I felt better about myself and I was able to mend broken relationships and even win over enemies. When someone crosses you, find it in yourself to forgive them. It’s not for their sake that you must do this, but for yours. Holding a grudge against people, whether they’ve consciously hurt you or not, is a surefire way to be miserable. I don’t recommend you keep putting yourself into a situation where you can be hurt by someone, but I do recommend that when you are hurt you must forgive them and move on with your life.
Happiness is not something that I want to selfishly hoard. I want everyone I meet to be happy. That’s why I share what I share on this website. I want to give people something new to think about and give them added pleasure as they watch familiar films with fresh eyes.
Thank you to everyone who enjoys my unique takes on films. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving. And I hope even a small part of the advice I have offered in this article will help you to find lasting happiness.
This is the Deja Reviewer bidding you farewell until we meet again.