Angry or Happy?

Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote ‘For every minute you are angry you lose sixty seconds of happiness’.  Wise words, but is choosing your mood as simple as that?  How easy is it for you to decide what your mood is going to be.  Can choosing your mood become a habitual part of your daily routine, regardless of external factors around you, which you may or may not be able to control?

The Health Benefits of a PMA

Everybody knows someone who has got or had cancer.  Up until last year, the people I knew were more acquaintances rather than close family or friends.  Now that has extended to two family members and a very close friend.  Each experience and diagnosis is of course incredibly different.

Whilst a positive mental attitude is not a cure on it’s own, there is no doubt in my mind that it most definitely can make a difference.  All three of the people close to me, that have cancer have demonstrated amazing strength, courage and positivity.  They are choosing their mood, no matter how they might be feeling physically and emotionally.  The health benefits that come from this include reducing stress, boosting immunity, lowering depression and improving coping skills.  This can only be a good thing.  None of us know what our lifespan is, but by using this approach, they are all making the most of every day by living the here and now.  In turn, their experience is having a positive impact on my own life and I find myself evaluating how I am approaching my own daily routine as I aim to fulfil my goals.


I have written before about the subject of patience.   It’s a massive life lesson for me.  Due to the family illness, my partner has had to return to Brazil for a prolonged period of time.  I am lucky enough to be joining him towards the end of February for a whole month.  However, after he left, I truly found myself struggling with him being away as I got on with day-to-day life, including going to work.  For the first week, I functioned to a bare minimum, dragging myself out of bed, going to work, coming home and sitting in front of the TV, drinking and eating comfort food.  All I could see stretched ahead of me was a month of this existence and it felt like an eternity.  I was moody and lethargic at work and had completely lost motivation.  All I could do was dream about getting on the flight to Brazil and I was wishing my life away.

Choosing a Change

Whilst looking for a quote for my weekly Facebook post, I found the quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson, which I subsequently used.  Such a simple quote had a big impact on me.  First of all, I realised that I needed to practice what I was preaching.  It dawned on me that I was feeling a bit depressed, something that I, like many others, experience from time to time.  Over the years, I have learnt to recognise the signs and have found the tools to deal with it.  After a stern talking to myself, I decided that I was going to be in control of my emotions and daily mood by making the very most of my time at home alone.

It was time to stop drinking on work nights, get back to the gym, eat healthily, give daily gratitude and read from my library of self-development material.  Bit by bit, the foggy sensation started to lift as my enjoyment of all the changes kicked in and I found myself enjoying each day more and more.  I still can’t wait to go to Brazil but I have stopped myself wishing my life away.  On this occasion, choosing to change and steer my mood to one of positivity, was ultimately quite easy in the end.   What right do I have to feel so negative when loved ones are facing a far bigger challenge?  However, it’s not always that easy.

Practicing the Choosing

Being positive is not always so easy and straightforward.  Nobody can sustain 100% positivity all the time.  What we can do though, is practice it so that it becomes the norm rather than the exception.  As it becomes more natural, the easier it is to spot the signs of negativity before they manifest themselves and take a hold.  There are many tools out there; you just have to find what works for you.  The reward of making the right choices are there for the taking.  So, over to you. Angry or happy?  You decide!

About the author: Stuart Dickson’s passion for personal development began in September 2013, when he joined a Network Marketing Company.  Part of his development is increasing his spirituality and the many ways of doing this.  His first blog, Happy Monday People was born from a project that came about from his personal development journey


‘We Are The Positive Psychology People’



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