I often find myself contemplating on my life and what it means to be happy. So often times I wonder, will I be satisfied with how I lived my life when I leave this Earth. Our time on this Earth is limited, we should be spending time with the people that matter most to us. I believe being happy is a choice, not a response. Because in the end, we can choose how we behave and react to situations.


Being happy with your life boils down to being content with what you have. Our society focuses heavily on self-improvement, whether it be beauty products, dieting, working out. While sometimes this is good, more often than not it makes us discontent with our lives and ungrateful for the things that we have. I read an article on happiness and satisfaction of life. The author of the article states, “So I’ve come to the conclusion — and it’s proven true time and again — that it’s not the conditions that make me unhappy, but my choice of thoughts, of attitude, of behavior.”(ZenHabits, 2016) I think that this way of thinking about life is very powerful. Our perception of our world and the blessings that we have can have a huge impact on our happiness and contentment with life.


Another important way to be happy with our lives is to build and strengthen relationships with other people. Studies have shown that having many close friends can increase overall satisfaction in life by almost 20%. Richberg stated in his research, “Having more close friendships was associated with a 19 percent greater life satisfaction and a 23 percent greater sense of optimism.” (Richburg, 1998) Humans are social beings, so it makes sense that the more social a person is, the happier they will be.


In conclusion, we may have more control over our own happiness than we may expect. The next time we are in a slump or feel like we are losing control of our lives, it may help to take a step back. We take too many things for granted, especially our family and close friends. We need to learn to appreciate the relationships that we have and those who care for us. Not only will it make our friends and family feel appreciated, in return it will help us become happier people.


Works Cited:

  • ZenHabits, Leo Babauta, https://zenhabits.net/the-incredible-power-of-contentment/
  • Time, How to be more satisfiedwith your life, http://time.com/25208/how-to-be-more-satisfied-with-your-life-5-steps-proven-by-research/
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October 20, 2017 5:30 am

Koji, this was a very interesting post, and I think its holds true in many aspects. I definitely agree with that statement of how our society focuses heavily on self improvement. Everywhere you go there is some book, or article or accessory you can buy to “change your life”, and how friends can impact your lives in ways that materialistic things cannot. I remember in Thailand where people were more happy and content with the people they had in their lives, instead of the “stuff” they owned. I read in this huffpost article, that those who considered friendship very important were more satisfied in every category from their health, their personal achievements, their safety, their relationships and their lives as a whole. https://www.huffingtonpost.com/mary-quigley/friendships-make-your-hap_b_8238262.html. I find it interesting that friendships correlates so closely with happiness, and I urge you to find more information and studies on this. Thanks for sharing

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