I believe happiness is a choice. I'm not saying by any stretch of the imagination that life isn't hard sometimes, and that we don't have to go through things that are extremely painful for us. But even in the midst of pain, we can be happy with who we are and the choices we are making. It's a choice to be down on ourselves. It's a choice to be miserable. It's a choice to feel like everything around us is happening to us and out of our control.
Unfortunately, we often don't feel that we have a choice. And, for the most part, that's an attitude we've learned. We are raised believing that everything around us is beyond our control and so we respond by giving up - by feeling helpless, hopeless, worthless. We don't have control over the economy, so we can feel righteous indignation at the government, at the banks, at the credit card companies. But the thing is, these entities don't control our happiness. We do. We're the ones who decides what makes us happy and what doesn't. Think about it.
Are you happy in your life? Are you happy with your choices? I am. And when I'm not, I know it because I start blaming my situation. That's a telltale way of knowing you're responding reflexively instead of consciously.
Where are you unhappy in your life, and why? What responsibility can you claim in the situation? It doesn't mean you're "at fault," it simply means you've made a choice somewhere along the way that has resulted in your feeling how you feel. What choices can you make differently to know you are mastering your own ship?
You control your life. You control your happiness. Your life is yours to mold as you choose. What do you choose today?