As a father, one of my favorite movies is Disney Pixar’s Finding Nemo. I know what it is to be a single father, and I know the great lengths my heart would take me if something were to happen to my children.
If you’ve never seen the movie, the main character Marlin is on a search through the ocean to find his son Nemo, who was taken by some divers. Along the way we meet Dory. Dory is what my wife would say is “somewhat touched.” She is a fish with short-term memory loss, and after she meets you or gains new information, she forgets it rather quickly.
Flash forward a bit, and Marlin and Dory are over a deep trench that stretches into the darkness. The only clue as to where Nemo may be had just sank into that trench. Marlin is beside himself as to what to do. He feels like his entire world just collapsed with that sinking clue.
Dory, in her serendipitous way, sees no problem. Her thought is to swim down into the abyss and retrieve what they need. Marlin cannot fathom(see what I did there?..fathom) even the possibility of retrieving the clue. Then Dory asks the question we all are frozen with fear to answer. “What do you do when life gets you down?”
Most of us think of a thousand scenarios of catastrophe and just give up. Dory’s answer is not high on our preference, nor does it remotely seem logical. As a matter, it’s downright giddy irresponsibility! (I stole that from George Banks in Mary Poppins)
Dory simply begins to sing “Just keep swimming, just keep swimming, just keep swimming swimming swimming,…..”
Today as you read what Andy Andrews has written, think of your life. Is squeezing out a smile and singing a song, painfully irritating? Think of your present situation or season of your life, and then take the advice of a little girl locked up in a prison camp. Anne Frank, in spite of all she was experiencing, chose to be happy.
The Joyful Decision*
Today, I Will Choose to be Happy.
Beginning this very moment, I am a happy person, for I now truly understand the concept of
happiness. Few others before me have been able to grasp the truth of the physical law that
enables one to live happily every day. I know now that happiness is not an emotional phantom
floating in and out of my life. Happiness is a choice. Happiness is the end result of certain
thoughts and activities, which actually bring about a chemical reaction in my body. This reaction
results in a euphoria, which, while elusive to some, is totally under my control.
Today I will choose to be happy. I will greet each day with laughter. Within moments of awakening,
I will laugh for seven seconds. After even such a small period of time, excitement has begun
to flow through my bloodstream. I feel different. I am different! I am enthusiastic about the day.
I am alert to its possibilities. I am happy! Laughter is an outward expression of enthusiasm, and
I know that enthusiasm is the fuel that moves the world. I laugh throughout the day. I laugh while
I am alone, and I laugh in conversation with others. People are drawn to me because I have laughter
in my heart. The world belongs to the enthusiastic for people will follow them anywhere!
Today I will choose to be happy. I will smile at every person I meet. My smile has become my
calling card. It is, after all, the most potent weapon I possess. My smile has the strength to forge
bonds, break ice, and calm storms. I will use my smile constantly. Because of my smile, the people
with whom I come in contact on a daily basis will choose to further my causes and follow my
leadership. I will always smile first. That particular display of a good attitude will tell others what
I expect in return. My smile is the key to my emotional make up. A wise man once said, “I do not
sing because I am happy; I am happy because I sing!” When I choose to smile, I become the master
of my emotions. Discouragement, despair, frustration, and fear will always wither when confronted
by my smile. The power of who I am is displayed when I smile.
Today I will choose to be happy. I am the possessor of a grateful spirit. In the past, I have found
discouragement in particular situations, until I compared the condition of my life to others less
fortunate. Just as a fresh breeze cleans smoke from the air, so does a grateful spirit remove the
cloud of despair. It is impossible for the seeds of depression to take root in a thankful heart. My
God has bestowed upon me many gifts, and for these I will remember to be grateful. Too many
times I have offered up the prayers of a beggar, always asking for more and forgetting my thanks.
I do not wish to be seen as a greedy child, unappreciative, and disrespectful. I am grateful for
sight and sound and breath. If ever in my life there is a pouring out of blessings beyond that, then
I will be grateful for the miracle of abundance.
I will greet each day with laughter. I will smile at every person I meet. I am the possessor of a
Today, I will choose to be happy.
*Traveler’s Gift by Andy Andrews