Can you decide to be happy?

planetweirdo

Well-known member
#1
Is it possible for someone to make a conscious decision to be happy, and succeed in making his or her self happy, even if s/he is in a unfortunate situation?

Or is happiness something that can only happen when something good happen in our lives thus giving us something to be happy about?
 

Hoppy

Well-known member
#2
I would say yes, it is possible. But I would also add that it also depends on what sort of people you have around you. If you surround yourself with negative people it will be much more difficult.

“Everything can be taken from a man but one thing: the last of the human freedoms—to choose one’s attitude in any given set of circumstances, to choose one’s own way.”
― Viktor E. Frankl, Man's Search for Meaning
 

SCP-087-1

Well-known member
#3
Do you mean in general? or instantly a bad situation? I think it's possible to increase your general happiness but it takes time and hard work. It's not like flipping a switch but you can choose to change your thought patterns. Pretty much try to look for the good in things and generally be more positive instead of thinking about how horrible everything is. Shift your focus from the bad to the good. Over time your default way of thinking about things can change and it can improve your mood. It is very hard to do and you might not see results for a while so it's easy to get discouraged but I think it works.
 
#6
I think happiness stems from feelings of contentment, which is generated inside you and can be applied to whatever state or situation you find yourself in. Its a state of mind that only we can have control over and is irrespective of external forces...so to answer your question then yes, you can just decide to be happy if your mind allows it.
 

Earthcircle

Well-known member
#8
Given the way you phrased the first part of the question, the answer would be yes. It is possible for someone to decide to be happy. But that someone is someone other than me. I have too many nightmarish memories of growing up in a Christian household ever to be happy. I even had a psychoanalyst -- that's right, an actual Freudian analyst -- who told me that I would be crazy if I were happy. I'm afraid that she was right.
 

Kiwong

Well-known member
#10
I think you can only make the conditions right for happiness to manifest itself. I find happiness to be one of the rarest of emotions, if you try to hard to hold it, it disappears. It kind of jumps and bites me when I am not focused. I think I enjoy happiness more because of how rare it is, and being able to compare it to the sadness and fear I've lived through.
 

theoutsider

Well-known member
#14
Is it possible for someone to make a conscious decision to be happy, and succeed in making his or her self happy, even if s/he is in a unfortunate situation?

Or is happiness something that can only happen when something good happen in our lives thus giving us something to be happy about?
I think you can to an extent. A few years ago, I noticed that I was always leaning toward the pessimistic viewpoint of life. I made a conscientious decision to remind myself not to be so negative and unhappy during times when there was really nothing to be unhappy about. It really helped my outlook on life. Now, when I'm down for no reason I just ask myself what I'm down about. If I have no answer, it makes me happier.
 

dannyboy65

Well-known member
#15
Let me tell you a little story. A year ago I was down to the bottom in my life with drug abuse, suicide attempts, no social life, nothing in my future. I was so negative and I was dragging my family and friends down with me. I didn't know where to turn, I didn't even want to get help. One day though I made a choice, that choice was that I didn't want to live like this anymore. So what did I do, I went and got help. I joined an autism foundation full of positive people who also struggled with autism. I started to push myself out of my comfort zone. I got off of drugs and alcohol, hell I even started to focus on school and make it a priority. Now here I am a year later drug free, top marks in my class, and a huge social group, the biggest I have ever had in years. You know what though right now is the happiest I have been in my entire life, yes I may still have issues but I'm progressing in fixing those. So what I have to say is yes, happiness can be a choice. If you choose to push yourself and stay positive I promise things will get better. Trust me I've been through it.
 

planetweirdo

Well-known member
#16
Let me tell you a little story. A year ago I was down to the bottom in my life with drug abuse, suicide attempts, no social life, nothing in my future. I was so negative and I was dragging my family and friends down with me. I didn't know where to turn, I didn't even want to get help. One day though I made a choice, that choice was that I didn't want to live like this anymore. So what did I do, I went and got help. I joined an autism foundation full of positive people who also struggled with autism. I started to push myself out of my comfort zone. I got off of drugs and alcohol, hell I even started to focus on school and make it a priority. Now here I am a year later drug free, top marks in my class, and a huge social group, the biggest I have ever had in years. You know what though right now is the happiest I have been in my entire life, yes I may still have issues but I'm progressing in fixing those. So what I have to say is yes, happiness can be a choice. If you choose to push yourself and stay positive I promise things will get better. Trust me I've been through it.
That's a great story. :applause: I hope you continue to progress. and I think your right, happiness can be a choice if you push yourself and stay positive.
 

planetweirdo

Well-known member
#17
I think you can to an extent. A few years ago, I noticed that I was always leaning toward the pessimistic viewpoint of life. I made a conscientious decision to remind myself not to be so negative and unhappy during times when there was really nothing to be unhappy about. It really helped my outlook on life. Now, when I'm down for no reason I just ask myself what I'm down about. If I have no answer, it makes me happier.
Your right, I tend to be overly pessimistic sometimes, and need to stop thinking so negatively.
 

Kiwong

Well-known member
#18
Your right, I tend to be overly pessimistic sometimes, and need to stop thinking so negatively.
My new psychologist gave a chapter on thinking more realistically. That's why CBT may not have worked for me up until now. Thinking more positively is often not achievable, but thinking more realistically about a situation is.
 
#19
Happiness is a choice ;) its inside of you Always, cause happiness isnt about what u have, what situation u are on, and so, happiness is about what u belive, what is ur toughts. Even if we dont know exaclty what can make us sure that happiness depend only of us, we need be sure that its inside of us, so why not try by urself take it out of inside of u ? :) im sure u will sucess on this mission
 

IntheLabyrinth

Well-known member
#20
Is it possible for someone to make a conscious decision to be happy, and succeed in making his or her self happy, even if s/he is in a unfortunate situation?

Or is happiness something that can only happen when something good happen in our lives thus giving us something to be happy about?
A good book about this topic is Viktor Frankl's, "Man's search for meaning."
 
Top