An Attitude of Happiness
Those of us that are not happy all the time except on those rare instances when someone close to us dies or a bad incident takes us by surprise; if happiness is not the dominant tone of our ordinary life, it is simply because we do not want it to be. We do not want it as much for example as the enterprising businessman wants money or a politician wants power or the student who seeks knowledge. Those of us that are willing to pay the price in prudent planning of his daily activities and the relentless exclusion of indulgences that cost more pain than they can return, can achieve happiness. Whoever will cut out remorselessly the things in his past life from which he cannot find pleasantness and rid himself of those things that cause him to give rise to distress. Whoever is willing to pay this price for happiness can have it just as soon as and just as often as he puts in the effort and applies his efforts consistently. If anyone goes about in this world in a chronic state of unhappiness it is his shortcoming not the burden of his circumstances. For there is no one whose circumstances are so bleak that another person, in those same circumstances, would not find a way to be happy. I doubt whether anyone can be fortunate enough to have a close family and friends and be content that another person in those same circumstances would be gloomy and a source of misery to everyone with whom he came in contact with. Happiness is like an auction. It is sold in lots to suit the purchaser whenever he bids high enough. And the price is not exorbitant. It is merely the prudence to plan for the simple pleasures that can be had for the asking and the resolution to cut off the gratifications that come at too a high determination. Then to develop the ability to stop dwelling on the negative experiences that life throws our way and amputate them the instant they develop. We need to guard against worry and anxiety from the moment we feel their approach to spread their deadly poison. But to live in a present from which profitless regret and unprofitable anxieties projected from the past or borrowed from the future are absolutely banished.
It is high time to treat melancholy, depression, gloom, fretfulness, unhappiness, not only as woeful diseases but as inexcusable and refuse to wimp and wine through this glorious and cheery world making ourselves a burden and nuisance to our friends. If we are so much as tempted to such a melancholy existence it is because we are too stupid to cast out these devils. With the right help, a little hard work and the right attitude they can be eradicated for ever.