Abraham Lincoln once said that people are just about as happy as they make up their minds to be. And, a former principal at my mom’s school always ended the morning announcements with a single catchphrase: “Make it a great day or not. The choice is yours.”
This idea — the notion that happiness is created first in our heads and is a mind over matter thing, if you will — has always fascinated me. I sort of picture these little flurries of happiness percolating in our heads, taking shape and changing our entire outlook in the process.
It looks like I’m not alone in my thinking, either. In the July issue of O magazine, chef Thomas Keller shares his secret recipe for joy. His career calls for a high level of preparedness, checking and double checking to make sure that you have all the ingredients and tools you’ll need. This, he said, will help keep stress to a minimum and maximize joy. Keller’s habit of checking and careful planning has spilled over into his everyday life. Essentially, he’s prepared himself for happiness, carefully making sure he has all the ingredients for happiness at the ready.
Such interesting ways to look at happiness and joy, isn’t it? I like the idea of being “armed and ready” for joy and welcoming it into your life. Because we all know that life can get hectic, messy and just all-around, out-of-control crazy, but if we make happiness a priority — if we put it on the top of our long to-do list, maybe we won’t forget to take those little nuggets of joy wherever we can find them.
We deserve those moments, don’t you think, friends? How have you made happiness a top priority in your life? When was the last time you took time for yourself? Let’s chat! xoxo