A long time ago…well about 15 years…a friend of mine whom I met while backpacking in Canada gave me a great gift…it was a book called “The Four Agreements”. This book has a great, yet simple, guide to help you be happy (however you define that of course)…because it clearly lays out that happiness can be a choice, and so can suffering.
It is by Don Miguel Ruiz and is a Toltec Wisdom book.
The four agreements (which you make with yourself and require work to make them habitual) are shown in the picture below. I have encountered a number of people during my life so far who have a tendency towards negativity – maybe through putting too much pressure on themselves at work or school, saying bad things about others, assuming something instead of finding out (it makes an ASS out of U and ME remember) or just feeling that things are personal when they really aren’t. Once you start on these paths of focussing on the bad side it can be tough to get off them.
While we all have our down-times, it can be a real challenge if someone is dragging you into a negative reality on an ongoing basis, especially if it goes against these “rules” because they often won’t realise they are doing it and would rather try to bring you into their reality than try and see the good in their life or situation. Seeing the good side can sometimes be tough…
There is a lot to be said about speaking with integrity (including not spreading gossip), not taking things personally, not making assumptions (i.e. communicate!) and always doing your best. While I certainly can’t profess to always doing all of these, it certainly helps to try. And if you have a tendency towards being unhappy, maybe it is worth looking at how you respond to and interact with the world around you because the chances are that just maybe, with a little work and time, you could choose to react differently and reap the rewards. Choose happiness.