However, it’s crucial to emphasize that happiness is not solely a result of wealth or abundance; “Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.”-Herman Cain
If happiness really is a thing of choice, it then suggests that people who find themselves in sad depressed shape deliberately chose to be that way. Personally, I don’t think anyone would deliberately opt to live a sad depressed life, sometimes these things just befall us and we find it difficult to break free. When this happens a lot of people go chasing fading shadows rather than solution.
People don’t necessarily choose to live sad depressed lives, they only fail to do what is necessary to be happy and stay happy. “Being happy doesn't mean that everything is perfect. It means that you've decided to look beyond the imperfections.”
Anybody can be happy despite the situation. It only requires understanding and a little bit of self control. There are steps one must take to keep happy despite the state of affairs:
Get to understand: many sad depressing situations we encounter result from poor and negative response to the problems we face. Therefore we have to understand that external problems we encounter should not engulf and control other areas of our lives. Though it’s quite difficult, we must learn how not to shift problems from one aspect of our lives to other unrelated aspects. Happy is the man who…understands Prov 3:13
Recognize that happiness is not necessarily the absence of sadness or problems neither is it ensuing from riches. It is not how much we have, but how much we enjoy, that makes happiness. -Spurgeon
Use yourself as a yard stick: if you want to keep happy, don’t use the achievement of others to measure your own improvement. It is wisdom to understand that life is a race and your opponent is you. Work and grow at your pace. However this doesn’t suggest you should compromise hard work, timing and diligence. You might never get to be that happy fellow you want to be if you measure your progress by the achievement of others, because whether you like it or not, you will always see things that will challenge you and meet people with better advantages than you. Happy is the soul that has something to look backward to with pride, and something to look forward to with hope. -Wilson
Choose to hear right: after her observations at the royal palace of King Solomon, queen Sheba stated; ‘Happy are your men, happy are your servants, which stand continually before you, and that hear your wisdom’. Happiness doesn’t just fall from I don’t know where; you have a role to play. Get to hear words that stir your being towards happiness. Say things that make people happy; your words at this point are very important.
Be happy when corrected: one interesting thing about humans is that we tend to detest anything that will oppose our intention. Someone once corrected me in a harsh manner, to his amazement rather than be angry at his tone and manner of correction I responded quite cheerfully. That singular act changed his countenance and the general impression in the room…. happy is the man whom God corrects: therefore despise not the chastening of the Almighty Job 5:17.
Help bring happiness to others: joy doesn’t only come by sharing it also comes by caring and helping. Be humane enough to help someone in need, be a light for someone in the darkness of her confusion, give little comfort to the one who is in despair… he that hath mercy on the poor, happy is he. Prov 14:21
Avoid frustration: anger comes before frustration and it doesn’t take long before it turns into sadness. Frustration can mean that you are expecting too much or that you know you should be doing more.
If money or power can buy happiness then the author of the book of Ecclesiastes should have been overjoyed. He tried at one point to make a test of pleasure by seeking happiness in his in riches. And his conclusion went this way ‘So my mind was turned to grief for all the trouble I had taken…’ Eccl 2:20’
Happiness depends on a lot of factors but most importantly it depends on you, first chose to be happy irrespective of circumstance. Life tends to smile back at those who smile at it.