GATEWAY TO HAPPINESS
You constantly choose whether you will focus on the positive or negative.
Happiness can be learned. While we probably will never have complete control
over our emotions, we have much more control than many people realize. Our thoughts control our emotions and we have the ability to control out thoughts to a great degree. Regardless of how a person has thought in the past, if he is willing to be flexible, he can learn to think in ways that bring happiness.
2. We ourselves choose to think those thoughts which promote our happiness or those with which we make ourselves miserable. This is a most important principle. You choose your thoughts. If you let your mind dwell on whatever thoughts happen to pop in, that too is a choice.
3. To live a happier life, you need to minimize the amount of time spent on negative thoughts and to maximize the time you spend thinking thoughts conducive to happiness.
4. We are constantly repeating messages in our minds. If they are negative, “I’m a failure,” “The world is an awful place,” “Nothing ever goes right,” we make our lives miserable. We have the ability to consciously make an effort to repeat to ourselves positive messages: “I have the ability to keep improving,” “The world contains many wonderful opportunities,” “Everything that happens to me can be used for growth.”
Rabbi Yisroel Salanter stressed the importance of memorizing inspirational aphorisms and passages and repeating them constantly. Little by little they will have a positive effect on your personality and emotions. (see Tnuas Hamussar, vol. 1, pp. 252-5)
6. When negative thoughts arise, you don’t need to fight them. Make an effort to think positive thoughts, and the negative thoughts will disappear. (Likutai Aitzos; machshovos, no.11)
7. Regardless of where a person actually is physically, he is really where his thoughts are. A person constantly has a choice to think elevated and uplifting thoughts or negative, self-destructive thoughts. How old you feel is greatly dependent on your attitude about yourself. Elderly people can increase their vitality and vigor by considering themselves young. (Toras Yitzchok, p.53)
HAPPINESS IS DEPENDENT ON YOUR THOUGHTS