Decide to be Happy — Now

Have you ever found yourself thinking or saying, “I’ll be happy when…

  • …I get a new job.”
  • …I get rid of this crummy car.”
  • …my kids learn how to do their own laundry.”
  • …I lose twenty pounds.”
The big red one

Photo: Sebastian Dario (Creative Commons) on Flickr®

Or perhaps it’s, “I’ll be happy if…

  • …I get the raise I deserve.”
  • …I can buy that new cell phone.”
  • …my son makes the varsity team.”
  • …we can finally get some new furniture.”

Why do we feel like something needs to change or we need to buy something to make us happy?  Don’t get me wrong:  I’m all about self-improvement.  But let’s face it:  most of us are truly blessed beyond belief with what we already have.  We have a place to live, food to eat, clothes to wear, and a job.  Additionally, we have a family and friends that love us very much.

Maybe it’s Time we Become Content with Less

I recently came upon this website on minimalism and I am enjoying it very, very much.  Joshua Becker is the host of the blog and has also authored two digital books:  Simplify and Inside-Out Simplicity Both are available for the Nook and Kindle.  I bought both the books for my Nook.  They are enlightening to say the very least.  I encourage you to take a look at them.

Here’s a passage I want to share with you today:

Your happiness is not reliant on the acquisition of any possession.  Your happiness is based solely on your decision to be happy.  – Inside-Out Simplicity by Joshua Becker

We seem to be caught up in the Madison Avenue spell where we succumb to advertisements that tell us to buy-buy-buy.  Television, internet, magazines, and billboards seem to call out to us, “Come on, it’s easy:  just pull out your credit card and call this toll-free number.  You know you want to buy this.  You need to buy this.  It will make you thinner, sexier, full of energy, stronger, smarter.”

Have What you Love; Love What you Have

It was William Morris who said, “Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.”  The more I read that, the more I love what it says.  My wife and I are adopting that policy.  We’re tired of all the crap and clutter that surrounds us.

We recently began a project to replace all twenty-two windows in our house.  Wow!  What a project, let me tell you!  This home-improvement project has caused us to take a look at other facets of our house.  We have promised each other that we are going to make some drastic changes in our house (physical) and how we live (mental).   In other words, it’s out with the old and in with nothing.


Your turn:  take a few minutes to reflect on what you are currently focused on.  Do you need to make some changes?  Rather than buy something that makes you happy, perhaps you’ll become happy if you get rid of something.  Please, leave a comment here.

About the Author

Michael Hawkins

I am a husband, father, writer, and blogger. I am passionate about helping people make good choices.

  • Lisa R

    We had to purge last year when my husband was unemployed, and now we live in a much smaller space. I really think about what I’m buying now.

    • Michael Hawkins

      Lisa – yes…the purge process is an important one. I feel like I’ve been on a ‘binge and purge’ process for quite a while now. My focus now is to simply purge. I need to eliminate the binge part!

      Now…if I can just find some time. Seems there is never enough time to get done what I want to get done. That is SO frustrating for me. Maybe I need a high-powered vitamin to keep me energized.

      Thanks for your comment!