Happiness is a choice

Arthur Ashe is the only black male to have won Wimbledon. He was the winner of three grand slams.
Once, he had a heart attack, and to recover from it he did a bypass surgery. During the blood transfusion process, he got infected with AIDS due to the contaminated blood he received. Later on, he announced to the world about his condition and told his fans that he has less time left on this earth.
When people got to know about this, they started asking questions like, “aren’t you feeling victimized?”, ” How cruel is it that God did to you!”, “How terrible!”, ” How unfortunate!”.

To all these opinions, Arthur Ashe gave just a simple yet beautiful reply, “Around the world, there are about 50 million children who’ve started playing tennis, some thousands of them become professional players, one thousand of them enter the international circuit, from them only  32 enter the Wimbledon, from them two reach the finals and from those two, only one of them wins, and I was that winner.
During my peak success I didn’t say, ” God, why did you do this to me?” Then why should I complain now? I’m choosing my happiness in every circumstance.”

This story of Ashe gives me hope, every time I fail to find happiness around me. We as a human beings always run after happiness. We see happiness as something to be achieved, something to be followed, something that’s not present at the given moment, something that is far from us. For most of us, our experience of life is always trying to get somewhere else, somewhere other than where we are. We’re constantly trying to get that person, that house, that job, that award, the thing that will change everything. Very few of us are present, very few enjoy the moment we’re actually living in. Because most of us are hoping for some better future moment. But what if that somewhere else never comes? what if it does come but it doesn’t change how we feel? what if we achieve everything we desire but still feel empty?

By trying to search for our happiness somewhere else,  We are seeing our happiness as a goal, not as a path, and by doing this we rob our present of all the happiness that it deserves. We postpone our happiness to something next, and when we get that thing, instead of cherishing and embracing that moment, we run to chase another happiness. This circle continues and we never really feel happy and contented.

The story of Ashe gives me the strength to feel happiness even in jagged circumstances. Because there’s no correct or exact definition of happiness. Happiness varies from person to person.  For some, happiness lies in having ice cream, and for another ice cream is something that she hates the most. Happiness also varies with time. Remember you felt so happy after topping class tenth exams? Do you still feel the same happiness? Absolutely no, right? So the degree of our happiness varies with time. The happiness of getting orange candies in childhood no longer feels the same. And at last, happiness varies in degrees. Let’s take an example where you’ve cleared the most prestigious exam in the country. You and your parents would be the happiest people after hearing this. Your friends will also feel happy for you but to a lesser degree. Your neighbors will be happy, but just for the sake of formality. Some of your neighbors might envy you for your success.
So see! The thing that makes you happy, can make someone extremely sad, envious, or depressed.
There’s no point in making the exact definition of happiness because it differs in various aspects. You just have to create your parameters of happiness. You’ve to breathe your version of happiness, now and every time because happiness lies in the very existence of human beings. Happiness lies at the moment and you’re just one decision away from choosing your happiness, from choosing a life that you always wanted.

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