Choosing Happiness in Everyday Life

Teresa Barker


Recently I’ve been consumed with the thought of thoughts.

A thought comes in and out of our minds so quickly, to the point that many of our thoughts go unnoticed. But they are felt. Every little thought, even if we may not acknowledge it on the surface, has a deep impact on the way that we perceive things, the way that we feel, and the way that we act.

Thoughts are powerful

And with great power comes great responsibility. I’m a firm believer in mind over matter. Our minds don’t rule us – we rule our minds. We have control over whether we fill our head with lovely or ugly thoughts. Think about that.

Disciplining my mind to think positively and happily has been an on-going goal of mine, and it always will be. A positive mindset isn’t a goal that’s achieved quickly, easily, or once. It’s something that is chosen day in and day out, from the moment you wake up until the moment you lay your head on your pillow to fall asleep.

But, just as with running, working out, or anything akin to those: it does get easier with practice.

Why am I talking about this?

As I mentioned before, achieving a positive mindset is an on-going goal of mine. Since I truly first began monitoring my thoughts and replacing bad thoughts with good thoughts, I’ve hit many milestones. My head is screwed on much better than it used to be.

But, it’s still not quite there yet.

There’s still more times than I’d like where I allow my emotions to be ruled by negative thoughts. I allow myself to get anxious or frustrated by these thoughts, and sometimes it makes me a less-than-ideal person to be around.

And that’s okay. Part of self-love is self-awareness and realizing that sometimes you are the problem. After that, you have a choice: Do you want to allow your mind to rule you, or do you want to rule your mind?

Choosing Happiness in Everyday Life

How this all ties in to everyday life is the fact that most our daily lives are just that: our everyday life. Most of the time we’re doing regular things like going to school, working, cleaning, eating, studying, exercising, watching tv, running errands, etc.

And with everyday life comes everyday problems: little arguments with your boyfriend, drama with a friend, sitting in traffic as you’re already running late, forgetting to submit in an assignment by 11:59pm, stress of having too many things to do for school, being overtired and hangry.

Sometimes I catch myself thinking negatively when one of life’s everyday problems come up, and then those thoughts affect my mood, which kinda sucks.

Here’s where you make a choice

When something bad happens and I can feel myself getting worked up, I pause. I interrupt my thoughts with a simple question.

“Is this how I want to be reacting?”

Usually that’s enough to give me the quick really check I need to remind me of who I am and how I want to carry myself. It’s simple and effective. Plus, it makes me wonder how I wish I were reacting instead, and then I take a deep breathe and move forward in that positive direction.


I want to say that being positive and happy 100% of the time is usually unrealistic. That’s basically like trying to achieve mental perfection, and “perfect” doesn’t exist. This idea of challenging negative thoughts to replace them with something more positive is really just a little tactic to make everyday life full of more happy moments and to not sweat the small stuff.

I hope this helps one of you out there, and thank you for reading and growing with me.
Much love, Teresa

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