Wrap your laughing gear around this, and let’s dissect this whole ‘ageing and happiness’ business.
“You don’t stop laughing when you grow old; you grow old when you stop laughing”George Bernard Shaw
Who Wants To Grow Old Before Their Time!?
Retiring from a long, stressful career in Education has given me the freedom to kick back and enjoy life. And one of the best decisions I made before hanging up the chalk for the last time, was to buy a unit at Aveo Mountain View Retirement Village.
Living in Paradise!
I meet people every day who have ‘happiness’ written all over their face. Their smile brightens even the dreariest winter’s day. Life, love and laughter emanate from their every word and motion. Even those who have the least to smile about, find something in their day to be happy about.
Those who have mobility challenges, or are wracked with pain, still smile. Perhaps they are thankful for waking up each day to the beautiful sounds of nature that abound in our twenty-eight acres of Paradise.
You can spend the whole day crying about it, or you can learn to love the cold…
I recently read an interesting story about a father and son in Norway. When the boy was about four years old, the father took him ice-fishing. The son was not happy because ice-fishing means standing around on a big block of ice for a very long time, and it was seriously cold. He soon made his feelings known in no uncertain terms, as a four year old would, and he cried.
The response from his father gave the son a life-lesson that he never forgot.
“Look, you’re here now. You can either spend the whole day crying about it, or you can learn to love the cold. You’ve got a choice. You can either choose to be miserable, or choose to love the cold.’ And so that’s what we did. We just learned to love the cold.”Jon Giaan
We All Have Choices
We can either cry about a situation, or learn to love it. The choice is ours.
That doesn’t mean we have to blindly accept every situation we find ourselves in. It means we have the choice to accept the situation or change it. If we can’t change it, then accepting it – learning to love it – is the best option.
Changing the weather in a cold Norwegian winter isn’t an option. The father’s advice to learn to love the cold made a life-long difference to the way his son viewed life.
If you can’t change a situation, then embrace it and learn to love it.
If you can change it – change it.
You even have a choice in how you change a situation.
- Grumble about it and make everyone else miserable as well
- Rant and rave and get people offside – often it’s the people you need to have on-side that you upset the most
- Blame everyone else for the situation – when often the challenging situation reflects a choice you have made and now regret
- Hold on to a grudge – some people seem to like being unhappy
- Ignore genuine help to solve a problem – as above, some people don’t really want a solution, even if it is handed to them on a silver platter – they seem to prefer to grumble and complain
- Acknowledge those who offer solutions – and work with them to bring about the change you want to make
And that’s what puts the smile on the faces of the people I meet every day.
They are happy to work with those who are striving for positive changes in their own life, and the lives of others.
And if it can’t be changed?
By learning to accept situations – learning to love the ‘cold’, we become, or remain, happier people.
Getting back to the wisdom of George Bernard Shaw – we grow old when we stop laughing.
And Who Wants To Grow Old Before Their Time?
… and obviously not the majority of people who live in Mountain View Retirement Village.
As for the few unhappy people in the village – who knows? Maybe the infectious laughter of the rest of us will show them that growing old (and grumpy) is a choice.
So wrap your laughing gear around all the fun things on offer in the Village, and stay as young as you are!
Life can be tough – but how you handle it is your choice. You can laugh or you can cry. Both probably take the same amount of effort – so why not laugh?
“Laugh, and the world laughs with you…”Ella Wheeler Wilcox
Stay young folks – the choice is yours!
And It beats the heck out of being old – and grumpy!
Disclaimer: This post does not intend to diminish Mental Health issues, especially Anxiety and/or Depression. The post simply aims to highlight the choice for individuals to focus on happiness rather than sadness. Unless otherwise stated, all information contained herein is the opinion of the author. The post does not constitute a diagnosis or specific treatment of any physiological or mental disorder. If this post has raised questions concerning long-term anxiety, sadness or depression, please seek advice from a professional.The Author: Maureen Durney