Have you ever heard of a “Happiness Account?” It’s the kind email subject that gets forwarded on and on like an old worn out chain letter. One that you may easily delete because you feel it’s not worth your time, however, this one has an interesting and relevant twist. Upon attempting to de-clutter some old files I came across this story about an old man and his happiness account. I am glad I made the good choice to read it rather than sending it to trash. I’d like to share it with you and perhaps you’d like to pass this along to someone who might need a gentle reminder to focus on what is really important.
Subject: Happiness account
A 92-year-old, petite, well-poised and proud man, who is fully dressed each morning by eight o'clock, with his hair fashionably combed and shaved perfectly, even though he is legally blind, moved to a nursing home today.
His wife of 70 years recently passed away, making the move necessary. After many hours of waiting patiently in the lobby of the nursing home, he smiled sweetly when told his room was ready.
As he maneuvered his walker to the elevator, I provided a visual description of his tiny room, including the eyelet sheets that had been hung on his window.
'I love it,' he stated with the enthusiasm of an eight-year-old having just been presented with a new puppy.
'Mr. Jones, you haven't seen the room; just wait.'
'That doesn’t' have anything to do with it,' he replied.
'Happiness is something you decide on ahead of time. Whether I like my room or not doesn't depend on how the furniture is arranged, it's how I arrange my mind. I already decided to love it.’
'It's a decision I make every morning when I wake up. I have a choice; I can spend the day in bed recounting the difficulty I have with the parts of my body that no longer work, or I can choose to get out of bed and be thankful for the ones that do.’
‘Each day is a gift, and as long as my eyes open, I'll focus on the new day and all the happy memories I've stored away. Just for this time in my life.’
Old age is really like a bank account. You withdraw from what you've put in.
If you follow the old man’s advise you would be wise to deposit a lot of happiness in your bank account. So, how is your Happiness Account? Is it full of fond recollections of your life experiences or are you emotionally bankrupt? I’d like to think we all need to make more deposits into our own, so that when we need to make withdrawals in the future, there will be a bounty for you to enjoy.
“Happiness is not ready made, it comes from your own actions.” – Dalai
I invite your comments.