dec 28Happiness is a muscle.

This is the thought that woke me at 5:22 this morning. The unintended wake -up call that made me jolt out of my slumber and sit up straight in bed. The message from the universe that seemed to shoot through the very darkness and point me back towards the light.

Happiness is a muscle.

So like any muscle, when you use it, it’s strength increases.

According to positive psychologist Miriam Akhtar, 40% of our happiness is under voluntary control – and that’s a lot to play for.

It means that the choices we make about our bodies, our spirits, our pursuits, and even the thoughts we focus on, have a monumental impact on our happiness levels.

It means, that in every single moment, I have a choice.

I can focus on the sources of my unhappiness, or I can flex my happiness muscles.

This is not news to me, it’s just that lately, I’ve been forgetting to work out.

No, I don’t mean I haven’t been hitting the gym enough (although I haven’t and that would probably be helpful), I’m referring to the fact that I’ve been forgetting to savour the moment, express my gratitude and practice the natural self-defense against depression, relentless optimism.

In the wake of some uncertainty surrounding my life’s meaning and purpose, instead of focusing on how much opportunity I have, I’ve only been able to see how lost I am.

And focusing on all that anxiety and fear has made me kind of miserable.

Thank goodness for 5:22am wake-up calls.